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Emacs vs Micro: What are the differences?

Introduction: Emacs and Micro are both popular text editors used for coding and programming tasks. While they have similarities in their functionalities, there are key differences that set them apart.

  1. Customization: Emacs is known for its extensive customization options. Users can modify almost every aspect of Emacs, from keybindings to user interface elements. On the other hand, Micro focuses on simplicity and has fewer customization options compared to Emacs. It provides a minimalistic approach, making it easier for beginners to get started without overwhelming them with too many choices.

  2. Size and Performance: Emacs is a feature-rich editor known for its size and relatively high memory requirements. It offers a wide range of functionalities, including an integrated development environment, which makes it a powerful tool for advanced users. Micro, on the other hand, is designed to be lightweight and optimized for speed. It prioritizes fast startup times and minimal memory usage, making it a suitable choice for resource-constrained systems or users looking for a snappy editor.

  3. Plugin Ecosystem: Emacs has a vast and mature ecosystem of plugins, packages, and extensions. These plugins enhance Emacs' capabilities, providing additional functionality for various programming languages, version control systems, and more. In contrast, Micro has a more limited plugin ecosystem. Although it supports plugins, the available options are relatively less extensive compared to Emacs.

  4. User Interface: Emacs has a text-based user interface that can be fully customized and extended. It can run in a terminal or as a graphical application with additional features. On the other hand, Micro has a more traditional graphical user interface (GUI) by default, which may be more familiar for users transitioning from other text editors or word processors.

  5. Learning Curve: Emacs is known for its steep learning curve, especially for beginners. It offers a vast array of features and commands, making it a powerful but complex tool to master. Micro, on the other hand, aims to be more user-friendly, with a simpler and more intuitive interface that can help users get started quickly without requiring extensive customization or learning complex commands.

In summary, Emacs is a highly customizable and feature-rich text editor with a steep learning curve, suitable for advanced users who need extensive customization and a powerful integrated development environment. On the other hand, Micro is a lightweight and user-friendly editor with a focus on simplicity and performance, making it a good choice for beginners or those looking for a more streamlined editing experience.

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Pros of Emacs
Pros of Micro
  • 65
    Vast array of extensions
  • 44
    Have all you can imagine
  • 40
    Everything i need in one place
  • 39
  • 32
    Customer config
  • 16
    Your config works on any platform
  • 13
    Low memory consumption
  • 11
    Perfect for monsters
  • 10
    All life inside one program
  • 8
    Extendable, portable, fast - all at your fingertips
  • 6
    Enables extremely rapid keyboard-only navigation
  • 5
    Widely-used keybindings (e.g. by bash)
  • 5
    Extensible in Lisp
  • 5
    Runs everywhere important
  • 4
    FOSS Software
  • 4
    Powerful multilanguage IDE
  • 4
    Git integration
  • 4
    May be old but always reliable
  • 3
  • 3
    Powerful UI
  • 1
    Huge ecosystem
  • 1
    Great flexibility
  • 1
    Nice tooling

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Cons of Emacs
Cons of Micro
  • 4
    So good and extensible, that one can get sidetracked
  • 4
    Hard to learn for beginners
  • 1
    Not default preinstalled in GNU/linux
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    - No public GitHub repository available -

    What is Emacs?

    GNU Emacs is an extensible, customizable text editor—and more. At its core is an interpreter for Emacs Lisp, a dialect of the Lisp programming language with extensions to support text editing.

    What is Micro?

    Micro is a framework for cloud native development. Micro addresses the key requirements for building cloud native services. It leverages the microservices architecture pattern and provides a set of services which act as the building blocks

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    What companies use Emacs?
    What companies use Micro?
    See which teams inside your own company are using Emacs or Micro.
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    What tools integrate with Emacs?
    What tools integrate with Micro?
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      What are some alternatives to Emacs and Micro?
      At GitHub, we're building the text editor we've always wanted. A tool you can customize to do anything, but also use productively on the first day without ever touching a config file. Atom is modern, approachable, and hackable to the core. We can't wait to see what you build with it.
      Standard Eclipse package suited for Java and plug-in development plus adding new plugins; already includes Git, Marketplace Client, source code and developer documentation. Click here to file a bug against Eclipse Platform.
      Vim is an advanced text editor that seeks to provide the power of the de-facto Unix editor 'Vi', with a more complete feature set. Vim is a highly configurable text editor built to enable efficient text editing. It is an improved version of the vi editor distributed with most UNIX systems. Vim is distributed free as charityware.
      Since version 0.101.0 and later Spacemacs totally abolishes the frontiers between Vim and Emacs. The user can now choose his/her preferred editing style and enjoy all the Spacemacs features. Even better, it is possible to dynamically switch between the two styles seamlessly which makes it possible for programmers with different styles to do seat pair programming using the same editor.
      Neovim is a project that seeks to aggressively refactor Vim in order to: simplify maintenance and encourage contributions, split the work between multiple developers, enable the implementation of new/modern user interfaces without any modifications to the core source, and improve extensibility with a new plugin architecture.
      See all alternatives