[Kc] editors and IDEs (was: May Meeting)

Sterling Hanenkamp sterling at hanenkamp.com
Wed May 7 13:53:34 PDT 2008

On Wed, May 7, 2008 at 2:57 PM, Andrew Moore <amoore at mooresystems.com>

> On Wed, May 07, 2008 at 02:35:04PM -0500, Sterling Hanenkamp wrote:
> > I guess I don't understand what's limited about either vim or emacs.
> Both
> They don't understand perl, so it is limited in its ability to help me
> write it better. It can't make completion suggestions based on my
> current context. It can't help me refactor my code very well. It can't
> do a lot of things that an active editor for other languages can do.
> For instance, if I have a CGI object, which is an object with a
> "param" method, I should be able to type:
> $cgi->par

This is what ctags are for in vim and I believe emacs as well. Here's a perl
module for helping out in Vim:


Also for Vim there's the Perl-support module which does a number of things.
I don't use it since I didn't like it when I last tried it a year or two
ago, but here's another helpful Perl plugin for vim:


These features do exist in vim and I'm pretty certain similar ones exist in
emacs. You do have to go through the additional effort of installing and
configuring the modules.

I should also point out that I don't use ctags or this kind of
autocompletion on purpose because I find it encourages me to be too lazy and
I start forgetting things. (I'm not suggesting that's the case for everyone,
but it is my problem. I also have a tendency to write code that is generated
on the fly, which makes such completion even more difficult.) I am not sure
how well these things parse and work, but from past experience, I do know
they work somewhat. I believe Komodo and EPIC for Eclipse also provide
autocompletion for Perl where it can.

So, such things do exist, but they may not work as well as one would want
(seriously, what does?). If you have an idea for improving them, go hack! :)

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