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Lev Eidelman Nagar
Lev Eidelman Nagar

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The New Kids on the Block

As I have written before my preferred code editor is Sublime Text. I chose it over the more popular VSCode for its' speed and performance (and a bit out of being a cranky old programmer if we're being honest).

However, some recent arrivals on the scene made me reconsider my choice. While they're not all there yet in terms of maturity and ecosystem I've been very impressed with all of them and can't wait to see what these projects evolve into in the future.

Also, I think the many similar choices these projects made are noteworthy. But, I'm getting a bit ahead of myself, so without further ado, these are the new kids on the block:


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Like the legendary phoenix, Zed rose from the ashes of another revolutionary code editor - Atom.
Zed's team is comprised of Github and Microsoft alumni who've previously worked on Atom and VSCode, so these folks know what they're doing.

Like Atom in its' day, Zed focuses on collaboration. It implements the LSP protocol for code completion and intellisense and uses Treesitter for syntax highlighting.

Unlike Atom however, Zed is written in Rust so it is practically guaranteed to be fast and efficient.

It has a built in terminal emulator based on Alacritty.

Currently it is mostly geared toward developing in Rust, as it is used to write Zed itself, but a small handful of other languages is supported as well.

Out of the three editors on this list Zed is the most like sublime text in terms of look and feel. It's minimalist, clean and fast. With additional functionality just a keystroke away if you need it.

Zed is currently only available on MacOS.


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If Zed is the spiritual successor of Sublime Text, Lapce (pronounced like Lapse) feels like bizarro VSCode but in a good way. Everything is at once familiar and different.

A bit more mature than Zed, it is also written in Rust and implements LSP, has a built in terminal and even has basic git support.

It also has the beginnings of a plugin ecosystem. Interestingly, a plugin can be written in any language that compiles to WASI.

Lapce looks incredibly advanced for a project that's in pre-alpha and I am curious to see where it goes next.

Lastly, I'd like to show you something a little different:


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Unlike the other editor on this list, Helix is a text based code editor written in Rust and is more of an alternative to Vim or Neovim than VSCode.

Like the other editors here it implements LSP and uses Treesitter and is the only one on this list so far that implements DAP for debugging.

All in all it feels like a more modern version of Neovim with many built-in features NVim delegates to plugins.

Although text-based editors aren't my thing I was very impressed with how efficient and ergonomic Helix feels.


  1. The future looks bright. In the coming years we will have a greater variety of tools to choose from, each focusing on different aspects and preferences, while delivering many of the same capabilities.

  2. Rust is here to stay and seems to be the go-to language for anyone working projects where performance is critical.

  3. So is VSCode, or at least LSP and DAP as none of these projects bothered with developing their own auto completion engine or debugging protocol.

I hope you've enjoyed this brief overview and I hope you will give these editor a try.

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