I've been searching for the most efficient text editor/IDE combo, well, forever. I started with Visual Studio years ago (okay, well, I started with MPW, and even before that some random Pascal compiler on an Apple IIe, and BASIC on a Commodore before that, but professionally I started with Visual Studio) with classic ASP, moved to, well, a heck of a lot of others, but for the web it's been...

  • Visual Studio
  • Some random freeware ASP specific editor I can't recall
  • Some flavor of BBEdit
  • Ultra-Edit
  • VIm
  • PhpStorm
  • Recent flirtation with Coda 2
  • Current flirtation with Sublime Text 2

PhpStorm is actually the best I've used so far, Sublime Text 2 excepted from the comparison. PhpStorm has tons of great features that, once you've had them, you can't leave behind -- Go To Declaration in javascript, javascript error identification in editor, identification of unused javascript variables, and a fairly robust VIm emulator (except for this serious bug I reported about 14 months ago, apparently).

Its only weakness? Slow performance and huge memory reqs. Why? I cringe when I say it, but it's in Java. I like Java. I've championed Java on the desktop. Maybe I shouldn't've.

Coda 2 is native. But it's not a great editor/IDE. It's slick for what it is, but it's not great. And it's decidedly not cross platform.

Sublime Text is native. It is crossplatform. It's fast and has good VIm keymap support.

And it has the groovy code overview on the left of this post. Beside your scrollbar is that mini-version of how your whole code file (give or take) looks. How cool is that?

Which brings me to my point: I like to have whitespace and flowerboxes, which makes my code easy to eyeball. Now, that neurosis is paying off again, as I can use Sublime Text to skip right to where I know I want to be in my files. Even before Sublime Text, I'd started using ASCII art headings to find pieces of commonly used code. Check this out:

That's pretty cool.

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