A couple of weeks ago Martin Gräßlin noted that I use vim and not Kate in a G+ discussion. Suitable shown up, II decided to give Kate another serious run. I do this every couple years, and it has indeed gotten better every time I've used it, but ... you have to understand that I'm fighting a long term addiction to vim here ;)
So I checked myself into editor rehab and forced myself to use Kate on two projects recently. I have to admit that I'm a convert. A lot of the keyboard controls I'm used to from vim translate over to Kate; if I turn on the vi mode in Kate it gets even better.
What really sold me though were two things: sessions, and the built in command lines (plural).
Kate lets you give am editing session a name. You can open and close sessions, and Kate tracks the files you have open, etc. There is also a Plasma widget and krunner integration, so I can now hit alt+f2 and type "kate" to see all my saved sessions. With autocompletion, of course! So: alt+f2, "kate mpl",
, bam! right directory, 30+ files open. Beauty.
The other must-have for me are the command lines. I live and die by the terminal, so having one around is crucial. Kate allows having a Konsole session right in the editor window. This is collapsable, so it doesn't waste space when i don't need it, but is always right there when I do. The killer feature is that it follows me around as I move between files in the GUI. I can do all my git foo, scp'ing, grep/find'ing, etc. in that window, of course, but perhaps the best thing is that `kate
` opens the file in the kate window, adding it to the session. My workflow is preserved!
There is also another command line in Kate: the Kate command line. This lets you tell Kate to do things with nifty little commands. As a vimmer, this feels so very, very natural. :)
A lot of things I'm used to doing quickly in vim can be done quickly in Kate. It's not 100%, but then Kate is better at some things compared to the default vim, too. For instance, Kate has the filebrowser sidebar with all the usual KDE goodness such as breadcrumbs, autocomplete, etc etc. Kate is fast, scriptable, detects files changed behind its back, autorecovers if your X session dies (not that that ever happens to me when working on things like the lock screen with X screensavers *cough* *cough*). It also has those nifty over scrollbars and various gewgadgetry that is just little sprinkles on the cake.
Not that I won't use vim from time to time still ... (he writes, looking at his various ssh sessions in various konsole tabs...)