Choosing Vim: Why

It's the hip new thing to do: Start using vim.


I've played with a number of text editors in my brief programming experience. First it was Gedit, which I actually like quite a bit. Then I played around with SublimeText for a while. My time at Turing started out with me using Atom, at the time barely out of beta. I even downloaded Textmate. Now I'm trying to move over to Vim.

Let's back up just a little. Text editors are pretty straight-forward, and I feel like they should mostly just get out of the way. That's what Gedit did: it was already there on my Ubuntu box and it was pretty easu to just type gedit [file]. That worked well at the time.

Then I started doing a little more serious programming. SublimeText is fast. I liked installing a plugin that let me run ruby right in the editor. The black background looked so legit.

For most of my time at Turing I have used Atom. It breaks sometimes. I'm upset that I can't use seeing is believing because it keeps breaking for me. But I'm getting better at programming and demanding more from my editor. I can now move around the editor in ways that are meaningful to my productivity. It's little more than a glimpse right now, but that's what made me decide to jump to Vim.

I tried vim-mode in Atom for a while, but it mostly served to mess up my undo commands and annoy people pairing with me. Then I started spending a decent amount of time ssh-ing around the VPS that is hosting my current project, and working in Vim was, surprisingly, not that bad. That was a turning point.

I've seen the way an accomplished Vim user flies around the environment. I'm jealous and I want in. So I've taken the plunge. From here on out, I'm making a conscious effort to use Vim close-to-exclusively. I'll let you know how it goes.

For the meat of how I switched, head over to that post.