5 best text editors for web developers
“What is the best text editor for web developers?” — this questions bothers not only beginners but experienced developers as well. New software is launched regularly, client requirements are growing, your own skills are improving and you want to automate routine procedures for large projects and get as much as possible out of the box. In this article we talk about best text editors for web developers that currently exist out there.
Sublime Text (Windows, Linux, Mac)
This text editor for web developers is written in C++ and Python. It looks the same on all supported platforms thanks to using its own UI framework. Developers provide free trial version but for continuous usage you have to buy a license. The good thing is that a license is provided per user and not per device. Corporate discounts for buying several licenses are also available.
Main advantages of Sublime Text:
- Ease of use. You can start working almost immediately after opening the program.
- Quick and flexible search with fuzzy matches.
- Multiple selection for entering identical text in several lines at once. For positioning cursor you use Ctrl + left mouse button or Ctrl + triple click with left mouse button for selecting the whole paragraph. You can also use keyboard for doing it, if you like.
- Visual mini-map of your code. It can be useful for finding certain parts of code when working with large files.
- Snippets for increasing work speed and a large amount of plugins for performing various tasks. The main of them is Package Control which is used for searching and installing all the necessary plugins from the editor itself.
Here’re few handy Sublime Text plugins:
Emmet allows you to use shortcuts for entering certain tags, for example:
Emmet transforms the shortcut above into a list with three elements:
SublimeLinter is used for syntax verification. It allows you to minimize the amount of errors by checking your code on the fly. You just need to install few packages, such as: SublimeLinter-html-tidy, SublimeLinter-csslint, SublimeLinter-jshint and SublimeLinter-php.
CSScomb helps to place CSS selectors in the right order for ease of future reading and editing.
As for the drawbacks, Sublime Text is sort of expensive ($70) and you can’t set it up via GUI (JSON configuration files are used for this purpose).
WebStorm (Windows, Linux, Mac)
WebStorm is not a simple editor, it’s an integrated development environment (IDE) written in Java. But since the difference between IDEs and editors with whole lot of plugins can be insignificant, we decided to include it too.
WebStorm has the following advantages:
- Effective work with projects of any size thanks to the integration with version control systems including Git, Mercurial and Subversion.
- JsTestDriver from Google that allows developers to improve code quality and follow TDD principles.
- LiveEdit for immediate preview of changes without reloading the page.
- Built-in features for checking code quality: JSHint, JSLint and Google Closure Linter.
- Support of various technologies: TypeScript, CoffeeScript, Less, Sass, Stylus, Compass, EJS, Handlebars, Mustache, Web Components, Jade, Emmet, etc.