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Author Topic: Return of the Son of the best *free* Windows Text Editor  (Read 22383 times)
Tuxman
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OMG not him again!

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« Reply #75 on: November 16, 2010, 04:43:19 AM »

http://www.zdnetasia.com/...dings-in-vim-62056578.htm  Cool
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Jibz
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« Reply #76 on: November 16, 2010, 05:10:15 AM »


Quote
To hit ESC, then $, and then i to get to the end of a line is, to me, a ridiculous waste of time.

I've never used Vim much, but doesn't A do the same as $ then i?

Edit: Ah, someone replied saying that there as well, sorry.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2010, 05:12:52 AM by Jibz » Logged

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Tuxman
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« Reply #77 on: November 16, 2010, 05:19:29 AM »

It was just an unobtrusive hint for the mapping abilities... so when it comes to WordStar bindings, Vim does that well, too.  smiley
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rjbull
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« Reply #78 on: November 16, 2010, 03:02:39 PM »

Actually, the WS emulation is pretty full-featured (including the Ctrl+C, Ctrl+X, Ctrl+S etc). From the EPP6 help file...

Wow, that looks pretty good!  Thanks for the heads-up!  I'll have to check it some time - but I assume that's a only a feature of Pro rather than Lite.  Hope we'll see a discount somewhere.
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rjbull
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« Reply #79 on: November 16, 2010, 03:09:00 PM »

I don't mean to sound rude, but what is the big deal about Wordstar?

This article, WordStar: A Writer's Word Processor by SF author Robert J. Sawyer is the the best explanation I've seen.
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superboyac
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« Reply #80 on: November 16, 2010, 03:18:38 PM »

I don't mean to sound rude, but what is the big deal about Wordstar?

This article, WordStar: A Writer's Word Processor by SF author Robert J. Sawyer is the the best explanation I've seen.
Interesting.  I'm always a little fascinated and puzzled by how these old programs are held in such high esteem even long after the technology has advanced so much that the interface is very unfamiliar.  The article makes some great points about how it's difficult to write freely on a computer vs. a sheet of paper (which I prefer when I'm really sketching things out).  but I'm not convinced that Wordstar really offers something to the new user.  For people used to it, I get it...it's efficient.  But for a new user, what would they use?  I plan on writing more soon, so I purchased Liquid Story Binder, which I've always like the idea, but never really used yet.  I find nothing comes close to paper yet, for me.  But if a program can bridge that gap between what the author calls "serialness" of computer word processors and the freedom of paper.  I still can't even imagine something as good as paper, and I've looked, believe me.  Just recently, i even bought a spiral-bound notebook to jot my ideas down.  But even that was too restrictive.  I've settled on just loose leaf paper.  Nothing beats loose leaf paper for me.  My friend doesn't even know why I even bother looking for alternatives.  He might be right.
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widgewunner
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« Reply #81 on: November 17, 2010, 09:41:44 AM »

... I assume that's a only a feature of Pro rather than Lite. ...

Good assumption. I just checked and the Lite version of EditPad does NOT support the WS keyboard emulation. However, the new EPP7 beta version does continue to support this feature.
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rjbull
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« Reply #82 on: November 18, 2010, 05:41:53 AM »

I'm always a little fascinated and puzzled by how these old programs are held in such high esteem even long after the technology has advanced so much that the interface is very unfamiliar.

Even back in the DOS days, the WordStar interface took work to learn.  You had to be at least a reasonably competent typist to start with, too.  Once you learnt WordStar, it genuinely became second nature and everything else seemed unbearably clumsy and slow.  If you needed to churn out and edit lots of text, nothing else came close.  The familiarity became grooved into your muscles and you no longer had to think about it or watch what your fingers were doing - which, I think, is not really true of Windows or any GUI.

Quote
  The article makes some great points about how it's difficult to write freely on a computer vs. a sheet of paper (which I prefer when I'm really sketching things out).

Unless something is really short, I usually sketch it out using a soft-lead mechanical pencil and a notebook.  You might like to read author Garth Nix's short article How I Write: The Process of Creating a Book, where he starts with pen and notebook.  When he types out the first chapter, that's the first revision.  But, once I get to the computer, I prefer WordStar editors/word-processors for handling text.  And I'd rather have plain text, so I'm not constantly bothered by formatting considerations when it's the ideas I'm trying to get straight.

Quote
I'm not convinced that Wordstar really offers something to the new user.  For people used to it, I get it...it's efficient.  But for a new user, what would they use?

As I said, WordStar takes effort to learn, and as we're in an age of instant gratification I doubt if many new users will appear - but the world will be the poorer if it's most efficient text-processing engine disappears.

Quote
I find nothing comes close to paper yet, for me.  [...]  Just recently, i even bought a spiral-bound notebook to jot my ideas down.  But even that was too restrictive.  I've settled on just loose leaf paper.

Careful - you'll be starting on the whole new world of Moleskine vs. Rhodia vs. Clairefontaine vs. Filofax etc. notebooks and the whole vast realm of which are the "best" pens and pencils!  smiley
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rjbull
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« Reply #83 on: November 18, 2010, 05:43:45 AM »

I just checked and the Lite version of EditPad does NOT support the WS keyboard emulation. However, the new EPP7 beta version does continue to support this feature.

I just suggested EditPad Pro as a desirable future deal on Bits du Jour   Cool
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superboyac
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« Reply #84 on: November 18, 2010, 09:18:16 AM »

rjbull, thanks for that information.  That article is good, I'm reading it right now.  I'm still not convinced about the whole wordstar thing.  Like, I don't get what's so great about using Ctrl-<letter> instead of the arrow keys to navigate through a document...other than Wordstar users who prefer it because they are used to it.  I get that there may be an elegance to it that combines simplicity, speed, workflow in a particularly useful way.  That's the part I'm not convinced of.  It's the same thing I don't get about people who love VIM, or the old Norton Commander.  I'm like, "Man, there are way better things nowadays.  If it's just a matter of assigning different keyboard shortcuts, just take another program and redefine the keys.  Wouldn't that be better?"  Anyway....
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mwb1100
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« Reply #85 on: November 18, 2010, 10:02:35 AM »

Like, I don't get what's so great about using Ctrl-<letter> instead of the arrow keys to navigate through a document

The idea is that you don't have to move a hand away from the main keyboard to navigate (similar to the argument vi users make).
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f0dder
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[Well, THAT escalated quickly!]

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« Reply #86 on: November 18, 2010, 10:44:55 AM »

Like, I don't get what's so great about using Ctrl-<letter> instead of the arrow keys to navigate through a document
The idea is that you don't have to move a hand away from the main keyboard to navigate (similar to the argument vi users make).
And on some laptop keyboards, this becomes extremely important - perhaps not so much for arrow keys, but often pgup/pgdown and home/end are located at fscked up places, or require pressing a function-modifier key. I can definitely see why WordStar keybindings has appeal - and they're logically placed.
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tomos
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« Reply #87 on: November 18, 2010, 10:58:53 AM »

Like, I don't get what's so great about using Ctrl-<letter> instead of the arrow keys to navigate through a document
The idea is that you don't have to move a hand away from the main keyboard to navigate (similar to the argument vi users make).
And on some laptop keyboards, this becomes extremely important - perhaps not so much for arrow keys, but often pgup/pgdown and home/end are located at fscked up places, or require pressing a function-modifier key. I can definitely see why WordStar keybindings has appeal - and they're logically placed.

Add to that, (according to the article linked to by rjbull above), the Control key used to be where the CapsLock key now is - this would probably have made it even quicker if you were fluent with the shortcuts.
Quote
Because of this, WordStar comes with a utility called SWITCH.COM to optionally swap the functions of the CapsLock and Control keys.
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Tom
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« Reply #88 on: November 18, 2010, 12:22:01 PM »

Maybe all of you need one of those programmable keyboards that gamers always like!  Then you can do all sorts of funky things with that based on your preferred hand position, workflow, etc.  I can totally see myself doing that sometime.
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Edvard
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« Reply #89 on: November 20, 2010, 11:58:12 PM »

I live in Linux-land and I still haven't got used to either Emacs or Vi (Vim, GVim, ad nauseum).
My editor of choice is Nano because it does what it says on the tin with a minimum of BS.
Needing to perform a tutorial before being able to use a program is not my idea of user-friendly.
I'm trying to compose a grocery list, not fly an Airbus...

I'm still looking for a graphical text editor that'll do everything I need.
Geany was ok, at least it let me USE vi without the training wheels, and there's a Windows version too.
Editra is close, but it still doesn't "feel" right...

What I'm REALLY looking for is a Linux equivalent of TextPad.  Kiss
We LIVE in TextPad at work, and it's pretty awesome.
If there were a free version, I'd recommend that over any other Windows text editor.
I've heard Kate is very close, but it depends on a healthy portion of KDE (which I loathe...) so that's a no-go.

Thanks for starting this topic, Widge.
I think simple text editing is more important a topic than most folks give credit for, and certainly needs more attention paid to it.
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Jussi Jumppanen
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« Reply #90 on: November 22, 2010, 10:35:59 PM »

Zeus Lite is a free editor for Windows:

    http://www.zeusedit.com/lite

It has configurable syntax highlighting, column marking, regexp, proper macro scripting (ie editable), ftp editing, user defined keyboard mappings etc.
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widgewunner
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« Reply #91 on: November 23, 2010, 10:01:55 AM »

Zeus Lite is a free editor for Windows:

    http://www.zeusedit.com/lite

It has configurable syntax highlighting, column marking, regexp, proper macro scripting (ie editable), ftp editing, user defined keyboard mappings etc.
I looked at Zeus a while back but as I recall it did not support the more advanced Perl-style regex syntax. What regex engine does it use?
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oversky
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« Reply #92 on: November 27, 2010, 12:59:39 PM »

Vim doesn't have good support for different language encoding.
In UTF-8, I can't print document in Chinese.
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widgewunner
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« Reply #93 on: July 04, 2011, 12:46:48 AM »

Just Great Software's EditPadLite 7 is now out and this new version has added full support for regular expression search and replace (using JGSoft's powerful engine). This is my new favorite free (for non-commercial use) Windows text editor.

Just thought some of you might like to know...
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Jibz
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« Reply #94 on: July 04, 2011, 02:38:18 AM »

It seems nice, but the lack of syntax highlighting makes the light version useless for anything but plain text imho.
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"A problem, properly stated, is a problem on it's way to being solved" -Buckminster Fuller
"Multithreading is just one damn thing after, before, or simultaneous with another" -Andrei Alexandrescu
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