Forum Overview :: Tansin A. Darcos's Alter Ego
 
Software Recommendation: Atom text editor by Commander Tansin A. Darcos 11/14/2019, 11:23pm PST
If you do programming, your primary tool is your text editor, just as a professional writer's primary tool is a word processor, If you're using a popular or well-supported language there are powerful support tools like Eclipse for Java and Lazarus for Object Pascal/Free Pascal. Other programming languages have to do with whatever is available.

One I have found that I find works well is the Open Source text editor Atom. I've found this editor is very good, plus it's reconfigurable using the Less dialect of Cascading Style Sheets. It calls itself "the hackable text editor for the 21st Century," and even "out of the box" it is very useful. It supports plug-ins to add functionality, color syntax highlighting, and, very usefully, spell check, so if you're entering text such as help screens it will point out by redlining words which are misspelled. It also has predictive text in which, after you type the third character of a word or identifier it shows suggestions on what the word might be based on usage by the files in your project. Press more characters and it updates the suggestion. Hit space, escape or a right or left arrow key and it dismisses the suggestion. Press the up or fown key to move along suggestions, press enter or left click on a suggestion and it corrects and completes the word.

Atom supports tabbed editing, with multiple files open. Each tab has an"x to close" button to remove the file from display or to dismiss mistaken, unintentional or unwanted changes to a file, and will ask for confirmation before closing a tab where the file has had changes made. Also, additionally, when the file in a tab is changed, the close button changes from an x to a blue dot.

Atom supports the Git source code management tool natively. You can either create a local Git repository on disk or connect to one on Github.com (and, presumably, to a remote Git server of your own.) I like this feature; I can create a "known good" collection of source files that complete the app and thus be able, if I make a mistake on a file and can't figure out what's wrong, to "rollback" to one that has no errors. Plus it shows a tree view of the project (if you do what I do and use a dedicated directory for each project.) File names which are not committed to the repository are gray. Files in the repository and unchanged are green. Files saved to disk with changes not committed are yellow.

Git integration is seamless. There is a button on the bottom right which opens a Git tab. This shows in the upper pane all your files (or as many as will fit in the top half of the screen, you can scroll down for the rest.) Below this is the "commit" window. Files listed in the upper window never committed are gray; committed, unchanged files don't show. Changed but uncommitted files are orange. Click on a file name and a "diff" window opens showing where the new file differs from the latest commit. Double click and it moves the file down to the commit window. Below this is a comment box allowing you to explain why this commit was made. Below this is a large commit button, and a list of the last few commits. Click the submit button and about a second later it comes back, clearing the commit window and the comment box. Very slick.

I didn't care for the default settings but I was able to select a different template with different color settings. Next I'll check out some of the plug-ins to see what they can do.

The program is available free on Sourceforge at here. The program's website is https://atom.io.
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Software Recommendation: Atom text editor by Commander Tansin A. Darcos 11/14/2019, 11:23pm PST NEW
 
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