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TextMate parking lot
Merlin Mann | Oct 6 2004
I can tell I’ll be spending a lot of the next few days exploring TextMate. In the interest of efficiency, I’ll park all my preliminary notes and “gee whiz” stuff in this post. I may do a fuller review/intro later, but I want to share what I’m learning since there’s so much interest in this app.
[A plea: Let’s please keep the Hatfield and McCoy stuff over in the Google Group. I know, I know. “Vim is better” and “emacs is better” and “cuneiform scales better” and “BBEdit saved my baby from a man with a big knife,” but please don’t carp here. If you (don’t care about|hate|want to destroy all traces of) TextMate, just move to another post or start your own thread on your site, cool? Cool.]
On with the motley!
update: added links to other folks’ interesting TextMate posts.
Pipe web previews through a script of your choice
As with many other text editors you can preview how text will look as a web page from within the app. TextMate allows you to optionally choose a script on your Mac through which the content is piped before visual preview. I’m thrilled that the default is Markdown—I maintain all my text files in Markdown and now I don’t have to do a lot of keyboard gymnastics to see what it will like when it’s parsed to HTML
Create powerful snippets with tab-able variables
TextMate allows you to create “snippets,” which are abbreviated strings of text that can be triggered to “explode” into much longer strings of text with a simple
I like how you can define variables in the exploded string and then hit
When I want to create a link to a book on Amazon, I type
What you can’t see is that there are are three variables in that string, as expressed in the source for the snippet:
Those dollar signs and numbers are telling TextMate that these are the three spots where I’ll want to add or edit text each time this snippet gets exploded.
The smart part is that TextMate automatically places the cursor at the point of the first variable (“$1”) so I can just start typing (or paste in) the ASIN for the book. Then, I hit
I will use the crap out of snippets.
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