Vim is your new IDE

Kill all the GUIs. Mouse is your enemy. Keyboard is your only friend.

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What happens when you combine Vim with the terminal multiplexer Tmux? You have the perfect coding environment. Here are some recommendations I've collected in the past years. Now I can happily fire up my working environment running Vim, some local servers and tests, in no time.

Programming Tmux

  • Tmux Crash Course is nice introduction on how to start using Tmux.

  • My tmux.conf dotfile has a customized statusbar and an improved color scheme to optimize readability. And a must have: remap the prefix from Ctrl+b to Ctrl+a.

  • Bootstrap your IDE is as easy as writing a simple bash script. This is an example on how you can write a .sh file to run own environment programmatically.

Vim Plugins

  • Vundle, the plugin manager for Vim, allows you to keep track of all your plugins in your .vimrc. Install, update and delete all your script with a single keystroke. Uh, did I tell you that you can also search for plugins directly from VIM? This extension is a must have.

  • Syntastic checks that your syntax is correct. It's an indispensable tool to avoid stupid errors while writing code. It really speeds up your coding.

  • Supertab Supertab is a vim plugin which allows you to use <Tab> for all your insert completion needs. It searches for all the strings in the current context, and suggests to the user all the matching ones. Speed is not the only benefit from the plugin, it helps avoiding a lot of misspelled names when writing code. Check out the section User contribution in this list for an alternative to Supertab.

  • Ack is a replacement for 99% of the uses of grep. It's nicely integrated with Vim so the user can search through his/her project files, and the results are shown in a split window. Check out the section User contribution in this list for an alternative to Ack.

  • CtrlP is an extremely fast full path fuzzy file, buffer, mru, tag... finder for Vim. Written in VimL.

  • NERDTree allows you to explore your filesystem and to open files and directories. It presents the filesystem to you in the form of a tree which you manipulate with the keyboard. It also allows you to perform simple filesystem operations.

  • Sparkup lets you write HTML code faster.¬†Write HTML in a CSS-like syntax, and let Sparkup handle the expansion to full HTML code. Check out the section User contribution in this list for an alternative to Sparkup.

Extra tips

  • Vimux allows you to interact with Tmux from Vim. Run tests, build scripts and tasks without leaving Vim.

  • Auto installing Vundle adding some lines of VimL to .vimrc config file. Every time you run Vim from a new environment, it will install Vundle and all the related Bundles. This is extremely useful when you are copying your Vim config file to a fresh installation, or to a new server.

  • A success story of a developer who said goodbye to his trusty MacBook Pro and started coding on an iPad + Linode, in da cloud.

Users contribution

  • YouCompleteMe, suggested by the nice redditor hnasarat. It take some extra effort to install, but provides an incredibly powerful semantic completions for many language (C, Ruby, Python, PHP and more).

  • Ag, suggested by gckjk (Reddit knows it better!). It's ack on steroids. 3 to 5 times faster, it ignores file patterns from your .gitignore and .hgignore (even .agignore if you have special needs).

  • Emmet, suggested by damnated, another nice redditor. An alternative to Sparkup, but with a nice plus, it's super easy and fast to wrap strings with tags. Check out the video for an example.

  • Unite, suggested by basetta, is an alternative to some of the plugins I listed. You can do file searching (like CtrlP), content searching (using ack or ag), move around the yank history and switch between buffers. All integrated in a single plugin.

Kudos! Thanks! 200

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