To all the hardcore Vim users:

Why do you prefer Vim over IDEs ?
Are you faster/more efficient using Vim ?
What are it's main benefits/drawbacks in your view ?

I'm familiar with it, but nothing more than that. Usually use it just for quick and dirty edits, but that's all.
I'm seriously considering making the change to Vim and I can't explain why. Read an article once why Vim is still relevant and some features as to why that is, but I'd like to get more opinions on it.

  • 7
    The navigation and plugins are incredible. I just haven't had the patience to switch over.

    It's similar to why use CLI git over a GUI — once CLI is configured correctly, it will always be faster. For any "macros" a GUI might do, the same can be done in bash where your hands never need to leave the keyboard.
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    Take a look at the different modes, you have shortcuts to delete words and perform operations that would require massive switching between a mouse and keyboard in traditional IDEs.
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    1. Best keyboard intergration you're going to find in any ide
    2. Yes faster typing and movement do to not having to move your hands from the keyboard at all, but i do suggest using the tmux+vim combo since with the right plugins you can run a bash command in a second and go back to writing code
    3. The benifits is its plugins and keybindings, plugins allow you to do just about anything, keybindings can be used to run anything in vim or outside vim. Another benifit is that the config is sharable where you can pick pieces from others. The only disadvantages i know of is its learning curve to use it at its "fullest" and the initial setup time to build your workflow
  • 0
    @Neotelos Good points. However not entirely convincing since it seems you only use vim as your go-to editor. I'd love to hear from people who have used something like Atom/Sublime for example (I currently use Sublime and I really can't complain) who made the switch, that would be really interesting.
  • 0
    @jckimble Wow thanks, yes I assume there is quite a learning curve to it, that's why I wanted to make sure that it's actually superior to my current editor.
    I think I'll dive into it.
    Any particular commands/keybindings/plugins you two particularly like ?
  • 0
    @thecritic what? I said I couldn't make the transition. I don't use vim for anything other than the default git message editor. I use Notepad++, like Atom, but would argue Webstorm is the best for JavaScript. I also used to be big on Aptana. And... I do like the tools in Visual Studio but can't stand how heavy it is.
  • 1
    Did forget to mention, Sublime is most often the best "lightweight/fast" editor. Atom has good balance. And Notepad++ is pretty much strictly an editor, not an IDE.
  • 0
    @runfrodorun Thanks appreciate your Input. However, switching files is supported in Sublime without having to use a mouse. CMD/CTRL - P opens a field where you can search for files pretty much instantaneously. It also shows recent files so a cmd/ctrl - P followed by enter will get you back to the previous file you had open.
  • 0
    @Neotelos Dang, sorry, misunderstood you. i thought you meant you couldn't make the switch away from vim (after praising it).
  • 1
    @thecritic vundle to install plugins easily, nerdtree as a file browser i have it keybinded as ,k to open and close it, vimux to use vim with tmux with the keybind ,vo to run commands and ,vo to close the command "window", vim-autoclose to close (){}[]""'' automaticly. Theres others i have for specific languages i use.

    This is my vimrc if you want to look at it, it automatically installs everything on first load
  • 1
    After working with NetBeans, I moved to vim. With the plugins, I can have features I want, and don't have to worry about other features I won't ever need.
  • 0
    @jckimble Thanks a lot! Going to check it out!
  • 1
    @thecritic no problem, if you want to look at others you can search github for .vimrc and it will pull up a million or so more. I just like mine cause i have pianobar setup with a few basic keybindings to control it
  • 1
    @thecritic also lookup tmux+vim by nicknisi on youtube its a really good tutorial to learn the combination, its what i started from
  • 2
    I started using vim at the start of this year and will hopefully stop using it soon, can't quite figure out how to do that though.

    But seriously it's pretty good so far, took a couple days to be confident and now I'm quicker with vim than sublime although I miss syntax jump links and other quirks but there's probably a plugin for that.
  • 3
    False dichotomy. I use vim emulation plugin within my IDE. I prefer the code sense feature from beasts like the Jetbrains flavored IDE and the mode-driven interface of vim. And for those you can install ideaVim.

    Oder editors and IDE support such plugins as well, e.g. atom.

    I for one would not touch a big project just with vim. And I am a vim fanboy.

    In the end it's about what making you more productive. Try it out, see if you want to invest the time to learn it.
  • 0
    @k0pernikus I couldn't agree more. I love VIM, but it takes a lot of pain to set it up to behave as well as a modern IDE.

    I find using IdeaVim in Jet Brains IDEs or VsVim in Visual Studio is the best of both worlds.
  • 0
    I do most of my projects on fresh cloud based VMs. I tried messing with sshfs to use IDEs locally but it was very problematic.

    I started to learn vim/tmux near the end of last year and invested the time in automating setting up all the tools/configs I need.

    It's not without trade-offs but I'm much happier using vim.
  • 0
    @thecritic look into a vim plugin, command t. Then look into selecta for the CLI.
  • 0
    @runfrodorun well that and it loads instantly on big projects cause it doesn't scan every damn file like intellij
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  • 0
    @norman70688 yep time fixes everything with opensource, but even then a few years ago sublime was the only one that had it cause it was specificly made for sublime and nobody had it
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