Emacs vs Vim vs None Of The Above

BBEdit for years. Then Vim for years. Then Emacs for years. In between I’ve used just about every editor there is. I love them all.

Emacs is everything anyone could ever want in an editor, and more. It’s the “more” part that gets you. At some point this weekend I realized I had spent nearly two hours trying to dial in Emacs window behavior and failed. Even if I had succeeded, it was still two hours I could have been doing something else.

Something else like play with NeoVim, maybe? πŸ™‚

Oh for crying out loud. I had almost forgotten that I was actually using NeoVim instead of Vim but never completely finished getting things set up. Spent the morning working on it before realizing that I was doing the “just a few more tweaks and it’ll be perfect” thing again. I also wanted to see what the NeoVim GUI landscape was looking like these days so I tried Oni, and VimR and…

By about 10:00am this morning I had gotten so frustrated with myself that I gave up and decided to use neither Vim nor Emacs for a while. I need a break from myself.

I don’t edit code much, so what I really want is a place for writing and taking notes. If I keep everything in Markdown I can use any number of apps interchangeably. Right now it’s looking like some combination of iA Writer for writing, BBEdit for text/code editing, The Archive for research and miscellaneous notes, and Agenda for project notes.

Everything changes.

My Org-mode TODO keywords are all the same length

It pleases me that all my tasks line up nicely in org-mode. I used to use keywords like “TODO”, “WAITING”, “CANCELED” etc. but that made for a jaggy, harder-to-scan list. Now I use “TODO”, “WAIT”, “CANC”, “NEXT”, and “DONE”. Aah, much prettier.

Emacs from scratch –Β Huy Tran

Huy Tran

Spacemacs is the first Emacs version I used, so I’m kind of attached to the evil-mode and SPC mnemonic key binding.But I always have a feeling that something is not right, Spacemacs hides a lot of things under the hood, and it loads a lot of stuff that I do not need during the startup.

This is so tempting.

Xah Lee on Frames vs. Window in Emacs – Irreal

Xah Lee on Frames vs. Window in Emacs – Irreal:

Lee’s argument, as I understand it, is that switching between windows in a single frame is suboptimal because various Emacs operations will destroy your windows configuration and using something like winner-mode to restore your window configuration is too much trouble.

I’ve been using a single maximized frame, split into several windows, and I’m frequently frustrated when I trigger some action which fouls up my carefully constructed layout. I’ve tried “layouts” and “winner-mode” and still never feel like I can predict window behavior. Lee’s suggestion to use two frames, side-by-side, has greatly improved the way I feel using Emacs. He’s right, it’s better this way.

Sometimes when I feel like using something other than Emacs I just change themes and that tricks me into thinking I’ve actually done it.