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[Bug-zile] Progress report on Zi

From: Gary V. Vaughan
Subject: [Bug-zile] Progress report on Zi
Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2012 17:15:10 +0700

I'm currently working on the rewindable zi branch at a more lua-centric
emacs-like editor.  The main differences between Zi and Lua Zile are
that the Lisp Evaluator in Lua Zile has been ripped out and replaced
with a Lua Evaluator.

Now that those changes are in good shape, I've begun to put work on
adding features that will make me want to use Zi as my main text

The first of those is syntax highlighting:

Recent (and future!) speed improvements in the Lua Zile branch have
made it possible to add a working syntax highlighter that works better
than the one in Emacs (IMHO) because it will allow and highlight
multiple syntaxes in a single file: HTML with embedded CSS, Javascript
and PHP?  No problem! ;)

Lua and diff/patch are already 100% complete, and I need just a few
more features in the syntax highlighting engine to support C and
Shell, which are much more complex to parse. Multiple syntaxes in one
file will follow soon after.

The syntax files for new languages are very straight forward to add,
by mechanically converting TextMate grammar files into valid Lua, so
after C and Shell are supported fully another 30-odd languages will be
following very soon after.

Getting it to run is a bit painful right now, as it uses newer releases
of luaposix and std that luarocks has available, and requires compilation
of the rex_onig module.  I'll write up an installation guide if anyone
is interested.

In parallel, Lua Zile and Zi have several tiny but annoying bugs that
make using them less pleasant than it could be, so I'm cataloging those
for fixing shortly.

The next feature I'll need to make me want to use Zi as my main text
editor after that is paren matching.  Watch this space!

Gary V. Vaughan (gary AT gnu DOT org)

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