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Re: Editor wars considered harmful

> On Mon, 23 Jun 1997, Bruce Perens wrote:
> yes, there should be a veritable plethora of editors available for
> installation AFTER the base system is up and running. The more the
> better.
> The base system should have ae (or similar newbie editor like pico) and
> the smallest possible implementation of vi that works.
> If something has to go to make room for it on the disks, then so be it.

I think it is more important to support all reasonable install methods 
on the base disks (including dpkg-ftp via ppp) than to include vi.  
Personally, I prefer vi to pico or ae, but I can deal with either one 
for as long as it takes for me to get the system up to the point where 
I can install vi or Emacs.

> The reason for installing vi is that it is THE standard editor for all
> unixes. It is the one editor which is guarranteed to be on ANY unix
> system.

Learning vi was handy the day I had to do some work on an old Xenix 
installation on a TRS-80 Model III (with a 5MB hard drive).  I was able 
to do the work I needed to do in ed, since vi -wasn't- available.  If 
any editor had a claim as the one editor which is guaranteed to be on 
ANY Unix system, it would be ed.

> Having a version of vi (no matter how primitive) available for initial
> system config and install is essential.

Having some editor (no matter how primitive) available for initial 
system config and install is essential.  Having that editor be vi 
isn't.  Ae is nice in that it tells the basic editing commands on the 
top portion of the screen.  Someone who isn't used to -any- Unix editor 
would like that much more than the initial "beep" mode of vi (where you 
press any key, and it beeps at you).  -I- would prefer vi, but I know 
vi.  If I didn't know vi, I'd prefer ae or pine.
> craig
> --
> craig sanders
> networking consultant                  Available for casual or contract
> temporary autonomous zone              system administration tasks.

     Buddha Buck                      bmbuck@acsu.buffalo.edu
"Just as the strength of the Internet is chaos, so the strength of our
liberty depends upon the chaos and cacaphony of the unfettered speech
the First Amendment protects."  -- A.L.A. v. U.S. Dept. of Justice

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