Is Padre really better than vi, emacs or Eclipse + EPIC?
I am using Google Alert to get notifications on blogs news about various subjects. Today I got a link to the archive of the mailing list of the Boston Perl Mongers where they discussed a presentation and demo of Padre.
I am really happy that people talk about the project but there were two questions asked that often come up. Let me address them.
Is Padre better than vi or emacs?
I don't think the Padre developers ever hoped to replace either vi or emacs. Those two have a totally different mind-set than Padre. We hope that Padre will have some advanced features that will make it worth to switch to it once in a while or that those features will be stolen and integrated into vi or emacs as already happened in the past.
We also hope that the vi and emacs user will understand that vi and emacs do not fit the mind-set of many people. Especially beginners, people who are used to live in their IDE and people who live in a mostly Windows world. If they accept this then they will see that Padre is not a competition to their tool-set but complementary tool.
Is Padre better than Eclipse + EPIC?
Short answer: Not yet, but we are getting there.
Long answer: If you are already familiar with Eclipse then probably it will make more sense to use EPIC and stick to those two. If you are not yet familiar then Padre will be a better choice for Perl programming as it is faster and knows more about Perl than EPIC does.
The editing part and the generic feature of Eclipse are still way ahead of Padre but in the Perl specific features Padre is already head to head with EPIC. In some fields it is still behind but in other fields it is already more advanced.
Most importantly, Padre has a much better potential in the Perl world as it is written in Perl so every user can also easily improve it or extend it.