Hi, Vim! Bye, TextMate! Nov 30

I’ve finally moved back to Vim (MacVim) successfully. I’ve even removed TextMate from my dock! It’s quite liberating.

For the past several months, I’ve switched between TextMate and Vim throughout the day, using TextMate the majority of the time. I decided a few days ago to use Vim for the entire day to see if I can live without TextMate.

And, I did it!

I switched because I couldn’t live without split screen editing, and in Vim, it’s a breeze. Editing a file with hundreds of lines of code is great when you can see different parts of it on your screen. Editing a Rails project with 30,000+ lines of code and ~200 models is a breeze in Vim.

Initially, my main concern was moving around Vim, but, after some plugin installations and muscle memory training, I’m now faster navigating projects with Vim than TextMate. To achieve this, I use rails.vim, NERDTree, FuzzyFinder_TextMate, and Vim’s ctags. A simple gf on any class name, association, or partial name, and the file is opened. A simple CTRL + ] on a method, and I’m editing the source code for it. rails.vim’s :R and :A are great when moving between controller, tests, models, and views.

The more I use Vim, the more I come across awesome functionality that puts TextMate to shame. I recently learned of the preview window (:help preview-window). Basically, if I come across a method that I want to find out more about, just hit CTRL + W } and it’ll open up the method in a preview buffer, while keeping the cursor in the same buffer. When I’m done reading, i hit CTRL + W CTRL + Z and it goes away. I love this!

If you want to try Vim out, you can check out my vim-config on github.com. Follow the simple install instructions, and have a go!