Thursday, 19 April 2012

So you think you can Vim?

I love vim. After giving it my best for about a week I was getting more productive than in previous editors for writing code like javascript, python or bash. Unfortunately, I also love statistics. Have I really improved my editing speed? If yes, how much? It's difficult to tell really, because I have not kept statistics.

I've been using it full time for over half a year by now and I keep picking up new things. Today for example, I added a mapping to F2 to let python run the current file!

nnoremap <F2> :w<CR>:!python %<CR>

I am absolutely sure that this saves me quite some time when developing python. However, it makes me wonder: how much more functions are there that I am not using? I use macro's, tabs, buffers, replacing, searching, jumping, the . key. What am I still missing out on? What do the real vim masters use that I don't?

What would be great is when apps like have something like a statistics plugin that keeps track of which functions and keystrokes you use. If you would compare your current usage to that of a true vim master, you would see what you are missing in one glimpse.

Vim with Achievements might not be as bad as it sounds!


--- Update:
I found this patch of VIM 7.2 that logs every command: https://bitbucket.org/wolever/vim72-logging/
Unfortunately it was a branch of an old version of VIM which crashes on Ubuntu whenever there is a .vimrc present, and the logging functionality is turned on by an option in .vimrc, so I can't test it.

I guess I'll apply the same patch to a more recent version of VIM.