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A GUI For Neovim

Posted on 2 mins read

Even though my primary use of Vim comes via a terminal, I can’t deny the allure of a solid GUI. Most modern choices suffer from an Electron base, leading to sub-par performance. But, one recent option breaks the mold. Non-electron, stable and a few nifty built-in bells and whistles. VimR is definitely worth a look.

VimR is the brainchild of Tae Won Ha. The project’s aim, as explained by Ha, is to, “build an editor that uses Neovim inside with many of the convenience GUI features similar to those present in modern editors.” VimR UI + File Browser

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While young, VimR already has a lot to offer:

  • Multiple windows
  • Markdown preview
  • Generic HTML preview
  • Basic mouse support: Left button actions and scrolling
  • Fuzzy file finder a la Xcode’s “Open Quickly…”
  • Basic trackpad support: Pinching for zooming and two-finger scrolling.
  • Ligature support
  • Emoji support
  • Basic File and Edit menu items
  • Command line tool
  • (Simple) File browser
  • Buffer browser
  • Flexible workspace model a la JetBrain’s IDEs

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Currently, the project is about 75% swift and 20% objective-c. I haven’t had any issues using it as my daily driver over the past week. Another cool trait is the adaptive themes. When you change your colorscheme, VimR will alter the UI to match. A small detail, but one that I quite enjoy.

As mentioned in the feature list, VimR borrows from Jetbrain’s flexible work space. The four side options (Files, Buffers, HTML and Markdown) can be moved to your liking. This allows for vertical or horizontal viewing.

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Is VimR the be all end all solution? No. But, is it worth a spin? Absolutely! The markdown and html preview features are enough of a reason to give it a shot. Plus, a PR for touch bar support is looming. Try it out and leave me a comment with your thoughts below.