Text Editors for IF

I thought for a second that column mode meant you could auto-reformat your code into columns. That would be freaky.

I’ve been using JIF for Inform 6 development. It has syntax highlighting and it keeps track of all the functions, object declarations, etc. to make it easier to jump around. You can also launch the compiler and interpreter from within the program. So, more or less a full-featured IDE.


JIF has its quirks but most of the time they don’t get in the way. I’m going to give the above-mentioned Implementor a shot for the sake of comparison.

I’m also curious, does anyone have experience writing Eclipse plugins? I’m wondering what would be involved to set one up for I6 with syntax highlighting and compilation, and whether it would also be able to support object references, renaming/refactoring, etc.

vim > emacs :grin:

I strongly recommend avoiding Emacs. It’s a ridiculous time sink and it creates problems at a much faster rate than it solves them. It’s too late for those of us who are already addicted to its features, but for everyone else: save yourself, I beg you!

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Can we argue about something less inflammatory, like electoral politics?


@FriendOfFred vim -c ‘term emacs’ :thinking: Lately I use vim more than emacs because I found the plugin architecture easier to develop for. Emacs is amazing as well!

I actually really like Atom. I’ve been using it for a year or so now. I really like its ease of customization.

However, lately I’ve been having two 3,000 line each files open inside it for most of my usage time and it’s been really dogging. I’ve been thinking of switching to VS Code just because of that, even though I didn’t like it as much as Atom when I used it.

Sublime Text isn’t too bad either, but a lot of the default settings are very “What were they thinking?” verging on unusable, even though you can fix most of them if you dig deep enough into the settings.

…necroposting a 10-year old thread with an editor war troll? Seems like something that a shifty low-down dirty no-good vim lover might do. :wink:

TextMate actually has some nice IF editing support options. Syntax highlighting and feature bundles for Inform 6, TADS 3, and also Twine, ink, and others. Many of the bundles aren’t available through the installer, however – you have to look them up on e.g. github.


Next we’ll discuss tabs versus spaces. :fire:

To be fair though (not that this was the necroposter’s intention :P), text editors have come a really long way in 10 years, so it’s probably not a horrible thing to update this thread with more modern options.


I’ve been enjoying WordWrangler on Mac because I have ONE THING I have to use it for. I have to open up a giant generated HTML that reads in with no line breaks, and change the browser title name.

I was using some default thing and doing it with an 8 second lag between keypresses. I opened it in WW one day by accident and went “oh, that doesn’t have to happen…”

Notepad++ is a favorite for planning, but I similarly find the Inform IDE editor and AXMAs text editor, both with inherent syntax highlighting, work just fine.

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In the interests of completeness (although I stand by my warning above), I’ll drop this link to a nascent Inform 7 Emacs mode:

(I have no connection with the person who made this, despite their GitHub username.)

This basically just has syntax highlighting, no other features, and IMO even some of the syntax highlighting is misguided. Comments, strings, text substitutions, and headings are all the syntax highlighting we need for I7 - function keyword highlighting is more distracting than helpful. Still, it might be something to build on.

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Hi Everyone, I pulled together an integrated Vim environment for Inform7 using the Vim plugin architecture. Full documentation, installer, etc. is linked below:

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