Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Quest for the Holy PHP Editor

In my never ending quest to find the best PHP editor, or code editor in general, I have downloaded numerous trials and demos. I was using Zend Studio for a bit, and really liked the feature set, but found it a bit slow due to the fact that it's written in Java.

Now I am testing two other editors, each with their own strengths and weaknesses.

  • ActiveState Komodo - So far top of my list! Includes the following features:

    • Code folding
    • Key binding
    • Code insight
    • Source Control integration (Perforce, CVS, Subversion)
    • Code completion
    • Project management
    • Brace matching
    • PHP Debugging
    • Syntax checking
    • Syntax highlighting
    • Auto indent
    • Indentation guides
    • Tab grouping
    • ...much more
  • SlickEdit

    • Code folding
    • Key binding
    • Code insight
    • Source Control integration (Perforce, CVS, Subversion)
    • Code completion
    • Project management
    • Brace matching
    • Syntax checking
    • Syntax highlighting
    • Auto indent
    • Tab grouping
    • Excellent visual diff tool
    • ...TONS more...

So I am liking Komodo way better now because it has a much cleaner user interface, and is more targetted to PHP and web development than SlickEdit. SlickEdit is heavily C/C++ focused.

SlickEdit does seem to have WAY more features, but it takes a rocket scientist to figure out how to use it all and set it all up. But I do have the feeling that if I took the time to set it up exactly how I wanted, that it could become the "do all" editor I need. It's a daunting task, however.

Komodo, on the other hand, has a very friendly interface and is very simple to configure to your liking. Unfortunately, I can't seem to get Komodo's Subversion integration to work on Windows, but I did manage to get it to work in SlickEdit. Komodo's Perforce integration works very well, however.

I'll keep messing around...who knows, maybe I'll find ANOTHER editor to play with!

1 comment:

Scott Westfall said...

Hi Ed,

I'm the Director of Development at SlickEdit, so I'm always interested in feedback on our products.

We have worked hard to build a lot of capabilities into SlickEdit. I'm sure it can be daunting trying to figure it all out. We try to present a reasonable set of baseline capabilities in the default configuration to prevent it from becoming overwhelming. But it sounds like we need to do more.

Can you provide additional information about what specific areas you find difficult? Is it the screen layout, the user preferences, the menus? We're very eager to make SlickEdit more accessible to new users.

Please feel free to email me at swestfall@slickedit.com or call me at 919-473-0070 so we can talk (or send me your number so I can call you).

Regards,
Scott