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Vim 7 Released 665

houseofmore writes "After many years of development, Bram Moolenaar, creator of Vim, today announced version 7 of the widely used editor. New features included spell checking in up to 50 languages, intelligent completion, tab pages, extended undo branches and much more. Downloads available here for Unix, Windows, Mac and more."
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Vim 7 Released

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  • Cut and Paste? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hey ( 83763 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:20PM (#15286426) Journal
    I wonder if it has a nicer way to cut and paste.
    I have always been unhappy with yank-number of lines
    or marking, etc.
  • by AnonymousKev ( 754127 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:28PM (#15286515)
    I was forcefully introduced to vi in 1989. It was in a two-week "Introduction to C" class from Cray. The instructor (I am not making this up: his name was Kermit) had made sure that vi was the only editor on the class computer. I'll never forget his words:
    vi is the most efficient editor ever written. You will hate it intensely for the first two weeks, after that you will discover you can't live without it.
    He was absolutely right.
  • Re:waiting (Score:3, Insightful)

    by grazzy ( 56382 ) <> on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:29PM (#15286523) Homepage Journal
    I find it easier to remember keyword shortcuts in Vim's way. Honestly, ctrl-random-char just doesnt cut it for me. Esc for command mode, and then one key. Thats all it takes. Works better with strange terminal emulations too.
  • Re:waiting (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:29PM (#15286528)
    It's all about the ePenis, son. If you have a small ePenis you need to be a Real Man. The problem is that no self-respecting Geek with a big ePenis would use something that's actually easy to use! To be a real Geek you have to memorise three thousands different cryptic and totally arbitary single character commands. How can you have any self respect if you don't know what ^:s/foo/bar/ does, or that ^:d5 deletes five lines.

    Now, do you want to be a real Geek with a big ePenis, or do you want to actually get stuff done?!?!
  • Re:Vim mean... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by h4rm0ny ( 722443 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:30PM (#15286545) Journal

    Typing with two fingers is simpler than trying to remember which of the "correct" fingers go on which keys. But take the time to learn it properly and you can type far faster than you ever did before, even if there's a temporary drop in speed while you learn.

    It's the same with Vi. Even if you don't learn everything that it can do, the simple fact that I can do all the major operations without having to use a bloody mouse is a plus for a touch-typist like myself. Vi is very small, very quick and very powerful. The learning curve is worth it.

  • Re:waiting (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jsveiga ( 465473 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:48PM (#15286725)
    For me, it became the most used editor when I was an AIX customer support, and vi was what I could expect to find in any default installation (and most clients had only serial terminals).

    So either remotely accessing a client's system, or doing on-site support, I could always count on vi to be there. That's why when I took the holy decision between diving into vi or emacs, I picked vi.

    Now, I agree it has the most user-unfriendly interface, but once you know how to use it, it is very powerful. I still use it a LOT today, on Linux and Windows - certainlly not for making the company's catalog, but for configuration files, perl programming, html writing, comparing text files, etc.

    Learning to ride a motorcycle is (arguably) harder than learning to drive a car, but for certain jobs, the bike is better.

  • by rasper99 ( 247555 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:49PM (#15286734)
    The best reason to know vi is that it is unsually installed on every UNIX box. It is a hoot to see someone who doesn't know vi working on a system that doesn't have emacs do cat >file
  • Re:waiting (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hackstraw ( 262471 ) * on Monday May 08, 2006 @01:51PM (#15286749)
    So why is Vim so popular?

    For me, I don't want a GUI editor. I do to much (almost 100%) of my work over a terminal connection, and the GUI overhead is not worth anything to me. In fact, I have vi aliased to vim -X which turns off some X support. I don't remember what, but it gave me grief for some reason years ago enough to turn it off.

    Vim is way above vi. One thing I use all the time is "visual" mode, which is like selecting areas of text with a mouse and I can pipe that data through a filter, do a search and replace on that data, etc. Its a feature that came out in version 3 or maybe earlier, and I find it invaluable.

    I like a moded editor. I like infinite levels of undo. I like :q!. AFAIK, no other editor has an explicit option to "get me the hell out of here, I'm done, don't bother me about it. Thank you."

    Its hard to verbalize why I like vim because I've been using it for over 10 years now. All of my emails are composed in vim. All of my code is written in vim.

    Oh, color syntax highlighting. When I reopen a file that I opened last week, it goes exactly to the line that I left the file from last time. I can scoot from the top of the file, to the bottom, to the first comma, to the end of a line, I can do "cw", and it erases the current word and then allows me to start typing. I many times wish vi[m] keybindings were available in GUIs. It took me a couple of years to "get over it", but I still wish it exists.

    Vim is here to stay. Its one of the least buggy (I don't remember the last time I've had a bug in it actually) complex applications that I use on a daily basis.

    Its quick, dirty, and powerful. Just like me :)

  • by hackstraw ( 262471 ) * on Monday May 08, 2006 @02:10PM (#15286919)
    You can't beat the simplicity of c-x, c-c, or c-v for editing and the cursor keys for moving about. I don't care if vim has 10,000 other features, I use only those ones I mentioned for perhaps 99.9% of everything I do.

    Cut, copying, and pasting others' code :) What a job!

    Sure, ^S is simple. But then you are in "the mercy of the editor" mode. Then your editor is going to ask you, "Do you want to save your changes?" "Do you really want to overwrite the file?" "Are you really, really sure you want to save this file?" "What filename do you want?"

    In vim, I can do ":w newfilename". ":q!" ":w!" ":wq!" or what have you. I'm in control, not my editor.

    Moded editing is "strange", but all editors have it. When you're doing finds or search and replaces, like it or not, you're in a different mode. Emacs has "^" mode, and a certain "^" sequence to get out of it.

    Its just that vi[m]s modes are more powerful and discrete.

    I guess I am religious about my editor, because its my editor and I know how to use it, and it gets the job done. But I don't push my religion on anybody. I tell new *NIX people, you have to learn a editor. Its imperative. I don't care if its pico or sed. You have to know an editor. It kills me when people get all "emacsy" on me and they only use it because they know 3 or 4 features, and the arrow buttons work. I work with an emacs guy that uses vim for macros because they are so easy to do, and then goes back into emacs for typing.

    I have _never_ met an emacs user that knew how to use it. Its sad.

  • Re:I 3 VIM (Score:3, Insightful)

    by lawpoop ( 604919 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @03:02PM (#15287374) Homepage Journal
    I got fed up with nano's lack of a search-and-replace feature

    Are you talking about ctrl+backslash functionality, or something else?

    ^\ (F14) (M-R) Replace text within the editor

    Though it doesn't say so, you first enter a search string and then a replace string. You then get a confirmation on each instance.
  • Re:I 3 VIM (Score:3, Insightful)

    by pjt33 ( 739471 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @03:06PM (#15287406)
    I got fed up with nano's lack of a search-and-replace feature
    Which version of nano? I use Debian so I don't even have the most recent version (I'm at 1.2.4), but it does have search-and-replace, including regex support.
  • Re:Ahhhhh.... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Monday May 08, 2006 @03:17PM (#15287499) Homepage Journal

    At this rate why not just use emacs with gnuclient (for fast access) and viper mode (for your basic vi keybindings)?

    Because firing up emacs in order to edit a text file is like using a backhoe to dig a post hole. Sure, you can do it with the right attachments (the auger) but you could get it done just as quickly and a lot more cheaply by just using a post hole digger. Emacs probably uses at least twice the system resources vim does (I'm not doing a comparison so I'm sticking with small statements) and most people will never want to use any of emacs' features besides text editing.

    So basically, for the average user, emacs is either the slowest-loading editor ever, or an extremely bloating text editing service (if used in daemon mode.) Loading it every time is for retards. Keeping it in memory if the only thing you're using it for is editing text files is only marginally less stupid, especially since it will periodically decide to swap itself out, and then you have to page it back in before you can edit.

    The reason that any vi-clone is "better" than emacs is the lower overhead, and the ability to do everything using typewriter keys, which are present (and typically in the same location) on every terminal. Also, you don't have these bizarre key combos that destroy your hands. I have an ex-boss who blames his carpal on emacs, now he has to use one of those kinesys keyboards that don't require wrist movement during typing, and he still can only type for about three or four hours a day total - pretty crap for a programmer. Of course, that's purely anecdotal, but it's pretty funny, if you're not him.

  • Re:waiting (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fbjon ( 692006 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @03:37PM (#15287676) Homepage Journal
    Since when has ctrl not travelled well over telnet/ssh? Typing e.g. Ctrl-X means you send a control code of the low-ascii kind.
  • Re:waiting (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 08, 2006 @04:07PM (#15287882)
    for editor in "$editors"; do

    echo "Once you've learned ${editor}, it becomes probably the fastest editor to use. Never having to use the mouse. Being able to quickly move around a document. Complex (regex) searching/replacing. It has a steep learning curve, but it a very powerful and arguably intuitive editor. I first started using it ${some_time_ago} when I first got onto ${some_machines} at ${some_place}. Since then, I continually find myself trying to use ${editor} syntax in different editors. Its not uncommon to see ${popular_sequence} at the end of some of my emails or other documents."


    Personally I use a number of editors depending on the machine I'm using and whatever it is I need to edit at some particular moment. The list goes something like emacs, vim, gedit, nano, and then whatever editing mode is available in IDEs I have to use, such as MonoDevelop.

    I understand that people might feel compelled to promote the use of their favourite editor(s), but in all honesty it never ceases to amuse me how some people have the charming naiveness to confidently declare to the world things like "once you learn it, $my_editor is probably the fastest editor to use". It reminds me of a nice interview with Rob Pike [] where, presented with the stupid question "Emacs or Vi?", he replied:

    [..] I don't expect any Slashdot readers to switch editors after reading these papers [..], but I think it's worth reading about them to see that there are ways of editing - and working - that span a much larger gamut than is captured by the question, 'Emacs or vi?'
  • Re:waiting (Score:2, Insightful)

    by kfg ( 145172 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @05:49PM (#15288674)
    I might add the caveat that you have be a "real" touch typist to appreciate and be able to fully "unlock" the power of vim.

    Hunt and Peckers and "half and halfers" may not be able to utilize vim to it's full potential, and thus not actually realize any benefit from using it.

    Please forgive me, however, if I suggest to these people that the solution is to "learn to type." :)

  • Re:waiting (Score:2, Insightful)

    by kfg ( 145172 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @06:10PM (#15288791)
    >>Never having to use the mouse.
    >Sounds like every other editor in the world.
    >>Being able to quickly move around a document.
    >Again, how is this unique?

    It isn't, but, as per my other post in this thread, it is unique in that its keyboard command sequences are optimzed for true touch typists, so once you learn them you can work at whatever your typing speed is, assuming that you think that fast (or type that slowly I guess).

    Isn't "intuitive" the *opposite* of "steep learning curve"? (Peopleware calls this "lying by repeated assertion.")

    Well, yes, but bearing in mind that calling anything but the nipple an "intuitive" interface is lying by repeated assertion. You even had to learn that your hands were good for something other than grabbing the tit. You just did it so long ago that it feels intuitive to pick something up.

    The only way software can be "intuitive" is by mimicing some already learned skill. Sometimes, however, this already learned skill can be inappropriate for a piece of software, like "knobs" that have to be "turned" with the mouse pointer.

    vi/m is "intuitive" (even though the commands themselves are not) to a trained touch typist, because it is, as per above, optimized for that already learned skill. The command sequences, although needing to be learned, are not entirely arbitrary.

    However, to a nontouch typist they are, because such a typist does not share the same skill set and reference plane. For vi/m to be "intutive" touch typing has to first be "intuitive."

    Which means you have to first spend a lot of time learning to touch type.

  • Re:waiting (Score:2, Insightful)

    by chud67 ( 690322 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @06:12PM (#15288802) Homepage Journal
    Once you've learned vim, it becomes probably the fastest editor to use. Never having to use the mouse. Being able to quickly move around a document.

    Agreed. If you ever want to see a thing of beauty, look over the shoulder of a very experienced Vim user and watch how they unconsciously use the key combinations and edit files at near light speed; it will inspire you to learn Vim in earnest.

  • by zerosignal ( 222614 ) on Monday May 08, 2006 @06:50PM (#15288992) Homepage Journal
    I've never used vim or emacs, but would like to learn. However, I'm concerned that I'd be losing out on a lot of Eclipse's functionality when it comes to writing Java, e.g. refactoring, object-sensitive method name autocompletion, etc. Would vim or emacs really be better?

Nondeterminism means never having to say you are wrong.