A holy war has been raging since the 80’s between nerds all over the word about which command line editor is better to use. Command line editors are necessary when the only means of using a computer is via the terminal or command line, for example while remotely accessing a server or any computer that does not have a gui installed. The “editor wars” is waged between Vim, and Emacs. Both have their pros and cons, but the connecting thread is that beginners attempting to use either will be utterly lost. In an average text editor, one expects to be able to press letter keys and have those letters appear in the document being edited. Not so for Vim (henceforth vi) and emacs. Letter keys are used to issue commands, and to enter text one must first press the correct keys in the correct order. Complicated? Yes. Efficient? Surprisingly yes. When you’re forced to use the command line and you need to delete a few thousand lines of text, holding down the delete key is not practical. I encourage readers who intend on doing a lot of work in the command line to learn how to use both vi and emacs. Today however I am re-learning vi (for the 5th time) and want to share some resources. For the fastest learning experience, install it, open it, and use a cheat-sheet to figure out what on earth is going on. For a slightly longer, more graceful introduction, YouTube has got you covered.
Editors note: Vim and emacs are both available for all platforms