[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: What editor to use in combination with octave?

From: Sergei Steshenko
Subject: Re: What editor to use in combination with octave?
Date: Mon, 30 Aug 2010 11:23:05 -0700 (PDT)

--- On Mon, 8/30/10, pathematica <address@hidden> wrote:

> From: pathematica <address@hidden>
> Subject: Re: What editor to use in combination with octave?
> To: address@hidden
> Date: Monday, August 30, 2010, 9:55 AM
> Please excuse a long post. I have experimented with a
> variety of editors and
> I find this question interesting. 
> I also mainly use Gnome under Ubuntu (also OpenSuSE and
> other distros
> including the disappointingly named "Scientific Linux"). I
> have also used
> KDE but I have the prejudice that Gnome consumes fewer
> resources (and other
> desktops consume less but Gnome is a reasonable
> compromise).
> There is a certain tension in selecting a suitable editor.
> Some are
> extremely powerful but, unfortunately, we live in a world
> in which those who
> do *not* work primarily in software development have, in
> general, (I would
> say "for better or for worse" but I am convinced it is "for
> worse"!)
> absorbed certain conventions of the editors that went on to
> become class
> leading word processors. That leaves a burden of
> expectation of how an
> editor will work that conflicts with how the most powerful
> editors actually
> *do* work. 
> So, the question arises whether to unlearn the expectations
> that represent
> the pollution of the common word processors and to relearn
> the conventions
> of one of the powerful editors, or whether to find an
> editor that
> accommodates those expectations. It is a difficult choice.
> I do not work in
> IT and, whilst I would like to become proficient in a
> "proper" editor, I
> cannot justify the time that it would take. My
> understanding of the powerful
> "proper" editors is therefore made from a position of
> dabbling rather than
> becoming proficient. 
> It is worth noting that the Octave handbook (authors: JWE,
> DB, SH) includes
> an appendix that explains how to set up emacs to edit
> Octave. In a sense,
> that appears to make it the "official" choice of
> development environment (I
> would be interested in others comments on this). I
> understand that it was
> written largely by the great Richard Stallman as the first
> stage for writing
> GNU (so that he wrote most of the code underlying GNU using
> it). As noted by
> a previous poster, emacs may become a "way of life". It may
> be used for many
> things including, for example, a LaTeX editor. It is also
> possible to use it
> as a front end for R. I don't know enough about emacs to
> set up a single
> version that will do all of these things so that for
> example I have tried
> TeXmacs for LaTeX and a version modified by someone else
> for R called "ESS"
> ("emacs speaks statistics). With regard to Octave, it does
> allow the
> development of several scripts simultaneously (that will
> interact with each
> other).
> >From the outside (of software development) looking in,
> I understand that
> there is great (friendly) rivalry in the software
> development world between
> those that use Emacs and those that use Vi (and its
> successor, Vim). I
> understand those that use Vim consider it superior to Emacs
> and also use it
> for "everything" (including, for example, coding LaTeX). 
> I have tried Emacs and I learned how to "pipe" code in
> development to a
> terminal. I am not sure whether that is a real terminal or
> a virtual one
> controlled (as a daughter process) by Emacs - I note that
> some other editors
> I have used are careful to make this distinction. I expect
> those proficient
> in Emacs will know merely because of their background. I
> experimented with
> Vim (and I downloaded "Imperator" for Firefox to practise
> its use) but I
> never learned how to have several windows open or how to
> "pipe" code to the
> terminal. 
> On to the less "macho" options that behave as expected by
> non-experts!
> I have used QtOctave and I admire those trying to develop
> it but I
> encountered many bugs (I have posted here before to explore
> whether the bugs
> lay with QtOctave or Octave). Personally, I would not
> recommend it at its
> current stage of development. 
> As I used gnome, I have tried "Gedit" and "Geany". These
> have the more
> familiar conventions for editing (marking, cutting, copying
> etc) text which
> means that they are quicker to learn but I know that users
> of Emacs and Vim
> note that they are less flexible. I never worked out how to
> "pipe" scripts
> to the terminal from Gedit but I was able to do this from
> Geany. There was
> an annoying problem with the interpretation of the last
> line in the program
> - I required two returns (I expect that this was something
> to do with
> different conventions in Unix and the other thing which
> shall not be named,
> concerning the distinction between line feed and carriage
> return - I expect
> I would have sorted it out eventually if I had stuck with
> it). 
> However, under the advice of a friend, I have installed
> "Kate" (available
> through Ubuntu repositories - it is necessary to install a
> couple of other
> things to make it work in Gnome rather than KDE but it was
> straightforward).
> Of the "conventional" editors I have tried, I found Kate
> the most useful. I
> can "pipe" the scripts easily to a virtual terminal (which
> is explicitly
> identified as a virtual under the default settings - I
> understand that I
> could pipe it to a separate terminal but then I would not
> be able to
> interrupt a script if it wandered off course). Kate does
> not appear to cause
> problems with the last line of the script (I presume
> because it has
> different default conventions for line ends). 
> All of the "conventional" (non macho) editors appear to
> have an upper limit
> on the size of block of script that may be submitted in one
> go to the
> terminal (I had to split some scripts into two to make them
> work). This
> problem did not appear to exist in Emacs (and I expect this
> also applies to
> Vim). It is possible that I can resize some buffer
> somewhere but I can't
> find a way to do this using the manuals supplied with the
> various editors).
> Anyway, I think the answer is, if you aspire to become a
> serious coder, and
> you have the time, then it would  be worth becoming
> proficient in Emacs or
> Vim (particularly if you will be writing very long scripts
> that would not be
> easily split into smaller chunks). It is probably worth
> making a choice and
> learning one in detail rather than trying to master both.
> If, like me, you
> are an occasional coder that does not have time to unlearn
> old conventions
> and relearn new ones, I personally feel that Kate is the
> best one of this
> type and I can confirm that it runs under Gnome. I have
> encountered one
> minor problem - I installed a couple of octave add-on
> packages ("statistics"
> and "miscellaneous" - which is required by statistics) and
> this yielded
> error messages that suggest that the help file did not
> properly integrate (I
> presume that would be a KDE/Gnome thing rather than an
> Octave thing).
> Best wishes. 
> Sorry for the long post but I hope it provokes discussion
> from which I might
> benefit myself. 
> -- 

I don't understand the fuss about piping scripts into a terminal.

I.e. copy-paste between windows works, and WRT Octave the latter has
'source' command, so just edit a file with your favorite editor and in
a different window have an Octave session open in which you


whenever you feel the file is ready for trying.

kate/kwrite are quite nice editors; I am still using NEdit.



reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]