Trying out learning more Vim on demand
These days, I have a reasonably active interest in learning more
Vim. Mostly I've done it by reading articles about Vim (eg,
and I'm keeping an index). Sadly, a lot of
the time this reading doesn't really stick. Recently I have been
trying another approach, one that feels really obvious. When I want
to do something, such as
capitalize uppercase a number
of words, I'll go do an Internet search for the answer (here [vim
capitalize uppercase word], which immediately leads
to a stackoverflow answer that's
actually summarized right on the results page of the dominant search
(I don't search for everything. Some things I want to do strike me as either too infrequent or too complex.)
The advantage of this is that it is what you could call highly
motivated learning (I want to do this) and I reinforce it right
away by using what I just read. If it doesn't entirely stick and
this is something I do frequently enough, I'll soon re-do the search,
re-read what I already read, and reinforce my memories. Perhaps
sooner or later it will stick. If it's not something I do regularly
it'll probably fade away, and I haven't wasted too much time on the
search instead of doing whatever operation by hand (such as
the word and retyping it in CAPS).
There are two drawbacks to this approach that I can see (and probably
some that I don't). The first is that this works much better on
operators (such as
gU to uppercase something) than on motions (in
common vim jargon I believe these are called 'verbs' and 'nouns'
respectively). It's natural to want to do an operation while not
knowing how to; it feels less natural to want to move around or
select in a new and unusual way. Second (and relatedly), this only
works for things that I think are likely to be within Vim's
capabilities. If I have no idea that Vim might even do something,
I'm not going to try to look for it.
(An example of both at once is my stumbling over visual mode. I'm pretty sure it would never have struck me to do an Internet search for it.)
The second issue suggests that I should keep reading about general Vim features, so I have a broad idea of what Vim is capable of. Then I have a better chance of realizing that Vim probably has a way of doing the specific thing I care about right now, and looking it up.
Comments on this page:Written on 19 April 2021.