IDE Question

jdd jeremiah.dodds at
Wed Oct 15 22:45:28 CEST 2008

On Oct 15, 3:47 pm, "Fabio Zadrozny" <fabi... at> wrote:
> You should be able to have it.... having multiple views for the same
> file: although it does that by doing a new editor, and then you can
> place that new editor as you want -- below some existing, to the
> right, etc -- or you can use an external plugin for something more
> closer to what emacs has:
> -- note: I don't personally use that -- usually I try to keep the
> modules small ;-)

Nah, I don't mean having multiple views for the same file, I mean
having multiple files open where I can see them all at once easily,
without tabs. I also keep modules small, but a lot of times I want to
be able to edit multiple files really quickly. When I'm doing web-dev
stuff (with cherrypy), I'll generally have my python source, css,
javascript, and html templates open at once, so I can quickly add a
feature and tweak stuff. I like emacs' buffer/window/frame paradigm a

> Depends on what you want: that's
> just one of lots of ways to customize it)

Yeah, I'm the type of user that like to be able to totally gut and
customize everything about the tool I'm using, and in emacs, the
underlying behavior is a keystroke away if you want it to be.

> I must say that I'm totally the other way around... even being
> productive in emacs, there's really no comparison there for me
> (disclaimer: I'm the author of Pydev, so, that's expected, but I know
> many people that changed to it and say the same thing)

Hey, you did an awesome job with Pydev - I got a lot of really good
use out of it when I still used Eclipse, and I'm sure that a lot of
people are really grateful for your work. It's a seriously awesome
tool for Python development with Eclipse, and I have fond memories of
it even though I don't use Eclipse anymore.

> The one thing I miss in Eclipse (for which I use notepad++) is the
> macros, but that's about it... Everything else is highly customizable
> for me in Eclipse / Pydev... everything else is there (templates,
> keybindings, jumping through code: going fast to any file/definition
> you want in your project, hyperlinking in console, etc)

I make very heavy use of keyboard macros, and although they're
difficult to master in emacs, once I got the hang of them I got the
ability to really make large-scale modifications of a codebase
quickly. I have sets of macros for specific languages, and specific
projects. I'm sure that there are equivalent ways to have as much
editing power in Eclipse (or any other competent editor).

> Also, I don't think outside of Eclipse there's anything close to what
> Mylyn gives you in terms of knowing what code is really important when
> working on a task (

I hadn't heard of mylyn, and it looks like a pretty powerful, nice

> Eclipse also has that -- And I'm pretty sure that the more you use a
> tool the more you get productive in it.

Yes, absolutely. Tools like text/code editors always have a lot to
learn, and you can be hugely productive with just about any of them.

> Also, as I said in the other post, choosing where you'll develop it's
> a highly subjective thing, so, the right thing to do is look the
> options, try them and decide for yourself.

This really is the crux of the "which editor should I use" issue -
there's no one correct answer for everybody. People who think
otherwise are wrong, IMO.

> > I do think that people should try a variety of styles of editors to
> > find what works best for them though - although it does take a lot of
> > time to learn your way around 3 or 4 different editors, once you find
> > what fits with you, you will probably get a huge boost in productivity.
> Totally agree with that.
> Cheers,
> Fabio

Absolutely. We are, I think, on the same page as far as the choice of
editor problem goes. It's somewhat analogous to the choice of
programming language issue, although not quite. I guess the lesson
here is to give each of the major editors a chance, and see what works
out for you. When I started using emacs, once I went through the
tutorial and read through some of the docs, it "clicked" for me. It's
certainly not an editor for everybody - for one, it's made in a way
where you are expected to customize it's behavior. The default
behavior in emacs is not suitable to most people - the defaults are
something of a bare-bones "yeah you can get some stuff done" mode of
editing, and it can be very frustrating until you get used to
modifying it. Eclipse is much closer to what (I imagine) most coders
are used to, especially if they come from a windows-centric
background. I personally used Eclipse while I was still learning my
way around a linux environment, and now my workflow and setup is so
different than what it was in windows that I feel utterly lost /
crippled when I'm on a windows box. Emacs fits my style of computer
use / coding - but it's far from a working solution for everybody (and
oh man, some of the editor flamewars I've seen are just ridiculous).
It sounds like Eclipse has become powerful enough that if I had to use
it (say, in a work environment), that I would not be constantly
cringing, although it would probably take me a few weeks to get up to
speed with it.

As an aside, one of the things that I like about the python community
is that the people in it are generally sane about keeping their cool
in discussions.

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