Distributions: keep your hands off vi

August 14, 2006

Dear Linux distributions: if I want to use a freaky super-intelligent editor I am perfectly able to fire up emacs myself, or even type 'vim' instead of 'vi' (honest, the extra letter is not too much for me to type). I want vi. You know, the simple and predictable thing that system administrators like because it behaves.

As an aid to your planning, here is a minimum feature for any editor called vi:

When I paste things into an alleged vi in insert mode in a terminal window in X, you put them in exactly as they are. No more, no less.

If your 'vi' does anything else, you are not being helpful, you are causing me to violently throw your distribution at the wall because you have just screwed up what I was trying to do.

(I would prefer that you not mangle my typing either, but not mangling my copy and pastes in X is a minimum standard.)

(I do not mind whatever distributions choose to do with things called 'vim' and the like. They can be as freaky super-intelligent as they want. My objections are strictly for what happens when I innocently type 'vi'.)

Written on 14 August 2006.
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Last modified: Mon Aug 14 17:47:27 2006
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