Nils Sommer

For the standard set of languages and frameworks I like to use for web development (HTML, Sass, Ruby, Rails, ...) I usually prefer a solid text editor accompanied by the terminal over complex IDEs. Over the past few months, I tried quite a few text editors and I've settled with TextMate. Here's why.

TextMate makes the right decisions. It has a native user interface, it's responsive, fast and doesn't consume vast amounts of resources. You immediately feel that it is a native macOS app. Compare this to the other text editors I have tried: Sublime Text and Atom. They use platform independent technologies and visually integrate miserably into macOS.


Equally important are the choices for typography, code style and syntax theme. The text is perfectly readable, font size and color contrast are carefully chosen. My experience with other code editors was a lot worse. Especially Atom has terrible default choices for font size (too big) and color themes (poor contrast of text on the background). Sure you can change it, but why not doing it right from the start?

These things deserve attention, after all it's reading code what I do most in an editor. What's a lot less interesting to me is IDE-like functionality like integration of version control systems and alike. Sure, most code editors (including TextMate) do offer things like that. However, I tend to use the terminal for accompanying tasks like git, build tools or running tests. Therefore the possibility to interact with development tools from the editor's user interface is not on my personal priority list.

I absolutely recommend TextMate as a code editor.

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