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Encyclopedia > Text editor
Notepad is the standard text editor for Microsoft Windows
Notepad is the standard text editor for Microsoft Windows

A text editor is a piece of computer software for editing plain text. It is distinguished from a word processor in that it does not manage document formatting or other features commonly used in desktop publishing. Download high resolution version (864x609, 24 KB) This is a screenshot of a copyrighted website, video game graphic, computer program graphic, television broadcast, or film. ... Download high resolution version (864x609, 24 KB) This is a screenshot of a copyrighted website, video game graphic, computer program graphic, television broadcast, or film. ... Notepad is a simple text editor included with Microsoft Windows since version 1. ... Microsoft Windows is a series of popular proprietary operating environments and operating systems created by Microsoft for use on personal computers and servers. ... A screenshot of computer software in action. ... Computer files can be divided into two broad categories: binary and text. ... A word processor (also more formally known as a document preparation system) is a computer application used for the production (including composition, editing, formatting, and possibly printing) of any sort of viewable or printed material. ... Desktop publishing (also known as DTP) combines a personal computer, page layout software and a printer to create publications on a small economic scale. ...


Text editors are often provided with operating systems or software development packages, and can be used to change configuration files and programming language source code. An operating system (OS) is an essential software program that manages the hardware and software resources of a computer. ... Computer code (HTML with JavaScript) in a tool that uses syntax highlighting (colors) to help the developer see the purpose of each piece of code. ... Source code (commonly just source or code) is any series of statements written in some human-readable computer programming language. ...


Some text editors are small and simple, while others offer a broad and complex range of functionality. For example, Unix and Unix-like operating systems have the vi editor (or a variant), but many also include the Emacs editor. Microsoft Windows systems come with the very simple Notepad, though many people (especially programmers) use a more complete program. Under Apple Macintosh's classic Mac OS, there was the native SimpleText, which was replaced or supplemented by WorldText. Some editors, such as TextEdit and WordStar, have dual operating modes, allowing them to be either a text editor or a word processor. Wikibooks has more about this subject: Guide to Unix Unix or UNIX is a computer operating system originally developed in the 1960s and 1970s by a group of AT&T Bell Labs employees including Ken Thompson, Dennis Ritchie, and Douglas McIlroy. ... The correct title of this article is vi. ... This article is about the text editor. ... Microsoft Windows is a series of popular proprietary operating environments and operating systems created by Microsoft for use on personal computers and servers. ... Notepad is a simple text editor included with Microsoft Windows since version 1. ... The first Macintosh computer, introduced in 1984, upgraded to a 512K Fat Mac. The Macintosh, or Mac, line of personal computers is designed, developed, manufactured, and marketed by Apple Computer. ... Mac OS, which stands for Macintosh Operating System, is a series of graphical user interface-based operating systems developed by Apple Computer for their Macintosh line of computer systems. ... SimpleText is the native text editor for classic Macintosh Operating System. ... A screenshot of Apples TextEdit. ... WordStar was a word processor application, published by MicroPro, originally written for the CP/M operating system but later ported to DOS, that enjoyed a dominant market share during the early-to-mid-1980s. ...

Contents


History

Before text editors existed, computer text was punched into Hollerith cards with keypunch machines. The text was carried as a physical box of these thin cardboard cards, and read into a card-reader. The punch card (or Hollerith card) is a recording medium for holding information for use by automated data processing machines. ... Manual card punches (not keypunches) A key punch is a machine for manually entering data onto punch cards. ...


The first text editors were line editors oriented on typewriter style terminals and they did not provide a window or screen-oriented display. They usually had very short commands (typewriters were not very reliable) that reproduced the current line. Among them were a command to print a selected section(s) of the file on the typewriter (or printer) in case of necessity. An "edit cursor", an imaginary insertion point, can be moved by special commands that operated with line numbers of specific text strings (context). Later, the context strings were extended to regular expressions. To see the changes, the file needed to be printed on the printer. These "line-based text editors" were considered revolutionary improvements over keypunch machines. In cases typewriter-based terminals were not available, they were adapted to keypunch equipment. In this case the user needed to punch the commands into the separate deck of cards and feed them into the computer in order to edit the file. This Smith Premier typewriter, purchased around the end of the 19th century, was found abandoned in the Bodie ghost town. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... In computer programming and some branches of mathematics, strings are sequences of various simple objects. ... A regular expression (abbreviated as regexp or regex, with plural forms regexps, regexes, or regexen) is a string that describes or matches a set of strings, according to certain syntax rules. ...


When computer terminals with video screens became inexpensive, screen-based text editors became common. One of the earliest "full screen" editors is vi, which is still a standard editor for Unix and Linux operating systems. The productivity of editing using these editors (compared to the line-based editors) motivated many of the early purchases of video terminals. A computer terminal is an electronic or electromechanical hardware device that is used for entering data into, and displaying data from, a computer or a computing system. ... The correct title of this article is vi. ... Wikibooks has more about this subject: Guide to Unix Unix or UNIX is a computer operating system originally developed in the 1960s and 1970s by a group of AT&T Bell Labs employees including Ken Thompson, Dennis Ritchie, and Douglas McIlroy. ... Linux (also known as GNU/Linux) is a computer operating system. ...


Types of text editors

Text editors geared for professional computer users place no limit on the size of the file being opened. In particular, they start quickly even when editing large files, and can edit files that are too large to fit the computer's main memory. Simpler text editors often just read files in an array in RAM. On larger files, this is slow, and very large files often do not fit. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


The ability to read and write very large files is needed by many professional computer users. For example, system administrators may need to read long log files. Programmers may need to change large source code, or examine naturally large texts, such as an entire dictionary placed in a single file. Source code (commonly just source or code) is any series of statements written in some human-readable computer programming language. ...


Some text editors include specialized computer languages to customize the editor (programmable editors). For example, Emacs can be customized by programming in Lisp. These usually permit the editor to simulate the keystroke combinations and features of other editors, so that users don't have to learn the native command combinations. Lisp is a family of computer programming languages with a long history and a distinctive fully-parenthesized syntax. ...


Another important class of programmable editors uses REXX as its scripting language. These editors permit entering both commands and REXX statements directly in the command line at the bottom of the screen (can be hidden and activated by a keystroke). This class of editors is usually called "orthodox editors", and most of represenatatives of this class are derivatives of Xedit, IBM's editor for VM/CMS. Among them we can note THE (a high quality open source editor), Kedit, Slickedit, X2, Uni-edit and Sedit. Some vi derivatives like vim also support folding as well as macro language and has a command line at the bottom for entering the commands. They can be considered as another branch of orthodox editors family. REXX (REstructured eXtended eXecutor) is an interpreted programming language which was developed at IBM. It is a structured high-level programming language which was designed to be both easy to learn and easy to read. ... A visual editor for VM/CMS using block mode IBM 3270 terminals. ... VM/CMS (Virtual Machine/Conversational Monitor System, originally called CP/CMS when it first appeared) is a bundled pair of operating systems used on IBM System/360, System/370, System/390, zSeries, and System z9 mainframes (and compatible systems). ... In computing, THE is an acronym for The Hessling Editor, or a completely different program that was called The Humane Environment now renamed Archy. ... // Modal editing As a descendant of vi, Vim is modal - an unusual feature which tends to confuse new users. ...


Many text editors for software developers include source code syntax highlighting and automatic completion to make programs easier to read and write. Programming editors often permit one to select the name of a subprogram or variable, and then jump to its definition and back. Often an auxiliary utility, like ctags is used to locate the definitions. Syntax highlighting is a feature of some text editors that displays text—especially source code—in different colors and fonts according to the category of terms. ... Ctags is a program that generates an index (or tag) file of objects found in source and header files of various programming languages. ...


Some editors include special features and extra functions, for instance,

are packages with text editors included, usually with extra functionality. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... A folding editor is a text editor which allows the user to hide and reveal blocks of text. ... An integrated development environment (IDE), also known as integrated design environment and integrated debugging environment, is a type of computer software that assists computer programmers to develop software. ... An HTML editor is a software application for creating web pages. ... An outliner is a special text editor that allows the grouping of text in sections that are organized in a tree data structure (hierarchy) of concepts, an outline. ...


See also

This article or section seems not to be written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia entry. ... The following is a list of text editors. ... The following tables compare general and technical information for a number of text editors. ... Quote from WP:NOT There is nothing wrong with adding a list of content-relevant links to an article; however, excessive lists can dwarf articles and detract from the purpose of Wikipedia. Therefore please link to internal articles where they exist, and only to external articles where there are not...

External links

  • The text editor wiki
  • Text Editors at sourceforge.net
  • Orthodox Editors as a Special Class of Advanced Editors Discusses Xedit and its clones with an emphasis of folding capabilities and programmability.

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