Favorite Programming Editors

I’m just getting into programming, and wrote my first VB program last night. I loved the interface. I am a student, and really can’t aford a nice GUI to program in. Does anybody know a free/ extremely low cost GUI program to program in. I know a bit of Basic and Java, but am willing to learn other languages, if they have a good free editor.

Thanks in advance,

GUI is not the word you’re looking for. A GUI is a graphical user interface, and applies to pretty much anything other than a command line.

What you’re looking for is an IDE, which stands for integrated development environment. And what IDE you use depends a lot on what language you’re programming in. As far as VB goes, is there anything other than Microsoft’s editor out there?

Take your language of choice, and go to google, and type in “free IDE <your language here>”. You should find something that way.

IDEs tend to be all-in-one programs that allow you to write, edit, compile and run programs. These are good for things like Visual C++, VB etc. In my last job I was a shell script / perl programmer, and I used vi exclusively. It is a superb programmers editor, and in fact you can get a version for the PC, if you google around a bit.

I’ve been using the free JEdit for a while now. It isn’t an IDE, but handles many different lanuages and is platform neutral.


Much better to use emacs. There’s a version of that for Windows, too. Unlike vi, it’s not modeful, so you don’t have to prepend all your commands with ‘esc-esc-:’. If you’re using a Unix environment, jed is also good, and not quite as much of a resource hog.

We’d better call in the UN, I smell a vi/emacs perl/python holy war about to erupt!

Yeah, Ctrl-X Ctrl-C is much more intuitive. :slight_smile:

If you are a full-time college student and can swing US$85, you can get Microsoft’s Visual Studio .NET Academic here.
This includes Visual Basic, Visual C#, Visual C++ and other stuff. Keep in mind that the non-academic version of this goes for around US$1000, so it’s quite a deal.

For microsoft stuff, visual studio is prolly best.
For web stuff and scripting, I find that NoteTabPro is best.
If you’re using unix then my fave is vi, but it’s hard to master!

More shuddering OK, I do most everything in pico - no real ‘features’ but so intuitive that you just type. Standard text. I have been known to use jed but not often.

Try eclipse.org for a free Java IDE.

I use vi when working on the unix machines around here. I do some VB programming so I use the VB IDE for that, but all other editting tasks I use Multi-Edit. It’s great for all text/binary file editting needs. And I just use about 1/100th of its capabilites.

Yes, but the downside of this is that Microsoft’s IDE does not have what anyone would consider a good programming editor. Its navigation abilites are rudimentary compared to an editor like vi, it has no ability to build macros for repetitive tasks, I don’t think it has multiple copy/paste buffers, and it is non-extensible. I was using more powerful editors in 1980.

  • Notepad
  • Pico
  • Kate text editor

Real men use ed. :smiley: j/k

emacs is very nice, probably unbeatable.


Edlin (just kidding)

I prefer TextPad, and have even done away with NotePad on the Windows machines I use in favor of TextPad.

Of course, real programmers use punch cards, or crack open the front panel.

Nah real programmers use pico - and code in binary :smiley:

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I’m definitely much happier in Emacs on *nix. :slight_smile:

However, looking at the .NET version, which I have:
[li] Macros appear to be available. According to the link you could only do this previously with Visual C++. There is even an IDE for developing them within VS .NET.[/li][li] There is a clipboard ring, looks analogous to Emacs’ kill-ring.[/li][li] I think it’s very extensible though add-ins (although again, I must admit I’ve never used this feature) and /or macros[/li][li] There is an open-source add-in, VisEmacs, which makes Emacs the default text editor.[/li][li] You can use vim in Visual Studio[/li][/ul]

And for GUI development in Windows-land, which seems to be the gist of the OP’s request, I would have to say the IDE in Visual Studio is probably the gold standard.

YM, of course, MV :slight_smile:

For my job, I use Visual Studio.NET and Visual Studio 6. I like some features of both, and dislike some of both. (Like, what the heck happens to my class view when I debug C#?) I also use JBuilder 6. Not a heck of a difference between them. However, if I was programming in Java on a windows platform, and someone else wasn’t buying my IDE, I would check out eclipse. It gets rave reviews on some Java message boards.