re: The Unix way... or why you actually want to use Vim VIEW POST


Vim is great because it's everywhere - if you know Vim/vi then you've got an editor on most Unix systems you can use.

Yes, this is like saying that Javascript is the best programming language that runs in the browser. While it's true, it tells us nothing about the quality of Javascript's design (or lack thereof in many aspects).

I would argue against using Vim to preach the Unix philosophy for non-believers. It could backfire, and rightly so.

Vim gets a special pass because it's a fascinating part of computer history. But if it was invented today, nobody would be insane enough to use it.

Really, users should not have to try hard to understand a piece of software. We understand today that it's the software that has to try hard to understand its users.

The Unix philosophy is great though! But it is about having simple core concepts that you can combine ad nauseam. Your paragraphs on pipes is a much better illustration of it!


Not a bad point, but I think you're a little mean to call the most popular editor for sysadmins/devops a 'part of computer history'. It's still pretty popular for web developers.

So... I lay down a challenge to you: can you name another editor which has a similar command to call out to the shell and replace the current buffer/file with the contents? i.e. I can extend the editor using external programs.


I have various ways to do that in Jetbrains IntelliJ, like this one

Reading again my comment, it's true that my tone was a bit mean. I used vim a lot and found it fascinating. I think we have better tools now, but that's not vim's fault, that's progress.

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