Epsilon is a programmer 's text editor modelled after Emacs. Epsilon is a commercial product sold by Lugaru Software. It was first released in , long before Emacs was available on personal computers, and modestly priced, so it provided an attractive alternative to the usual DOS editors for those accustomed to Emacs. It was also the first DOS based editor to allow editing of files that were larger than available RAM, and one of the first to allow running programs such as compilers in the background while allowing editing to proceed concurrently on DOS. Epsilon supports Unicode but does not display characters outside the BMP and cannot presently handle right-to-left scripts. It can convert among dozens of character encodings.

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The GNU Emacs website does a better sales job When looking through the website I see Windows ish screenshots, pages that say they have not been updated in over five years, and little description of what it does beyond saying it's like EMACS.

No clue at all about why I should use this rather than one of the other free-beer editors out there. Sorry, but that's just nonsense. If you want to actually sell something, I would expect to have at least a summary of main selling points right there, at the front page.

Expecting the potential buyer to dig through the manual to even learn what the software actually is beyond the "emacs like editor" is ridiculous. The product could be technically superior than everything else and the best thing since sliced bread, but it means little if you don't tell people about it. That's marketing Compare with e. SublimeText website - the key stuff is right there, even animated! There's certainly the possibility that they aren't really sure how selling things on the Internet works.

However, I'm willing to entertain the possibility that the guys who've been selling this for 32 years know what works for them better than someone who just found out about their editor. And frankly, design aside, I like Epsilon's website a lot more than SublimeText's. The front page doesn't offer any useful information about the "key stuff" for a programmer's editor is it properly extensible, through an extension language? Besides, it's entirely devoid of any useful information besides these 7 features and 6 animations.

There seems to be no way for me to find out if ST has any features for e. Where's the manual? Where's at least a longer list of supported features? I equally don't understand the fixation for animation. It takes less time to find the Epsilon manual on their website and skim it than it takes to watch the six confusing, since there's no on-screen keyboard! I understand its value as an enhanced form of illustration, but I'd appreciate it more if it would enhance the written, precise information, rather than replace it.

I wonder who would that be. Mind you, programmers who shop for an editor are usually very knowledgeable about what they want. It's a beautiful piece of software and I've really enjoyed using it. No regrets on the purchase. For some reason, I find it gratifying that this operation has been in business more or less for 32 years. I can feel a strong sense of pride in the application he's built and still seeing it out there.

Whatever few orders he gets is essentially keeping the site running and providing online support to those few still using his wares. Must be fun to have a long-standing project that you can go to that keeps you in touch with both newer and older OSes too. If you need a CD please email us for estimated availability. Sometimes programmers need to look at unusual files: binary files, very big files, odd data files. Epsilon was designed without the limits of other editors, so it can handle these kinds of jobs, as well as ordinary files.

For example, with Epsilon, lines can be as long as you like. This text editor gets it. Such a contrast to some of the editors we have today where anything over a few megabytes is an edge case not worth fixing. PeCaN on Aug 27, I loaded a 1. At least it worked though, cough Atom cough. ComodoHacker on Aug 27, And what you expect here? Other editors usually take 2x to 3x of file size.

NuSkooler on Aug 27, Wouldn't a hex editor be a better choice for binary files and odd data files? Are there benefits besides the ability to handle large files and long lines?

I'll stick with Emacs for now. In addition, I fail to see the advantage of this over Emacs: Emacs already has pretty much all of Epsilon's features, and a larger community.

Furthermore, I highly doubt that its extensibility features are as extensive. It's kinda cool, though. Sidenote: why do I always see the HN headlines up to a day ahead in the previous headlines?

Is this just thing everybody sees? Or am I just really lucky picking my threads? Epsilon is very fast, like coming up in a second. Emacs takes tens of seconds up to a minute. You start Emacs and hope to never shut it down. With epsilon you can start it on a file quickly and move on.

I need to seriously rethink my Emacs configuration. I thought I had a lot of packages and elisp scripts loaded at startup, but I don't think I ever hit the 5-second mark. Emacs starting up a whole minute? What great packages am I missing? Me neither, and you'll most often run through emacsclient anyways, so It's not hope for me. I start emacs when the machine starts and quite literally never shut it down. Not because I don't want to start it up, but because without it running, I don't get work done.

I even generally have a copy running in an again always-on tmux session, for when I login to a box via ssh. An always on tmux session? That seems kinda hacky, given emacsclient exists for exactly this reason How does emacsclient protect me from ssh disconnects? I thought all it did was use an existing emacs instance. IIRC, that's exactly how it protects you: if your ssh drops, your buffer won't close. What are you running it on? Tens of seconds Only use emacs, not epsilon, but someone above mentioned that it can handle long lines.

Emacs, despite being a good editor, is not performant in such cases. You can do some optmizations to Emacs line handling. But by the time you've really hit Emacs' limit, you should have split your line anyway.

And there is always nano, for the truly desparate. How does "-nw" help with long lines? Apparently, one of the scans is for glyph height. In -nw, your font's monospaced. If emacs is smart enough to drop the check, it should be slightly faster.

I don't know, but I Emacs Like really close to vim. It depends on how much you've got loaded. Most serious emacs users have a vast corpus of elisp loading on boot. Nowadays, some people will load the elisp lazily, so the files are only evaluated of you use their functions. This is also why emacsclient exists: To try to amortize the startup cost.

In Epsilon 2. This was a miracle! DOS could barely run a single process, with certainly no preemptive scheduling; and even if you dreamed of multi-tasking, there was a maximum of k of memory, with nothing virtual about it. It was so much better than nearly all of the alternatives, even though I didn't use its IDE features. Some of the basic keybindings like exiting and changing windows were different enough to be an obstacle. And then I never looked back. COM, not to write programs on.

Emacs is an entire universe. Since then I've also programmed in vim, IDEA, Eclipse, some prototype editors I've written, Arduino, XCode, Notepad, OpenSCAD, and browsers, mostly in order to collaborate with other people and occasionally because they are better integrated with one or another more or less shitty system than Emacs is.

But Emacs is pretty much the most convenient way to program for me. Our volume is zero, but we make up for it with large margins. Been using Epsilon daily since I've been disillusioned lately that it's not been updated for quite some time.


Lugaru Software, Ltd.



Epsilon (text editor)






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