GSoC is over: The state of Kate's Vi input mode

The Google summer of code programme’s coding part officially ended this Monday. That won’t be the last you will hear from me, though. Kate’s vi input mode has turned out to be quite nice, and there are lots of improvements I want to do in the coming months. The biggest news are a visual mode + visual line wise mode. Visual mode is one of those things that really make vim stand out from all of the vi clones, and having support for it makes Kate’s vi input mode it much more usable for me.

There are also lots of new commands and support for setting and jumping to marks. These are not saved between sessions yet, though. Overall, it’s already quite usable, even if it still has its small quirks and bugs here and there. This will definitely better quite soon as I use it quite extensively myself, and fix bugs as I find them.

A really nice feature is that one can quickly toggle the vi input mode on and off by using the view menu or a short cut (default is ctrl+meta+v).

The big thing left to do is to enchance Kate’s built-in command line. I want to add support for the most command vi commands and make it support ranges, setting of options, etc. The current command line implementation isn’t really suited for this, so it probably needs to be modified quite a bit. Hopefully it will eventually be possible to send commands to the app hosting the katepart too. Asking it to quit, close a buffer, etc. Right now the only command supported is :w. ;-)

I am very satified with what I accomplished during GSoC. I had to change some of my plans underway, mostly due to actually using my work, and seeing which features I missed the most. GSoC was a nice start, but there are still lots of things I want to do. :-)