Emacs vs Vim: What are the differences?
What is Emacs? The extensible self-documenting text editor. 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 Vim? Highly configurable text editor built to enable efficient text editing. 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.
Emacs and Vim can be primarily classified as "Text Editor" tools.
Some of the features offered by Emacs are:
- Content-sensitive editing modes, including syntax coloring, for a variety of file types including plain text, source code, and HTML.
- Complete built-in documentation, including a tutorial for new users.
- Full Unicode support for nearly all human languages and their scripts.
On the other hand, Vim provides the following key features:
- Vertically Split Windows
"Vast array of extensions" is the top reason why over 57 developers like Emacs, while over 334 developers mention "Comes by default in most unix systems (remote editing)" as the leading cause for choosing Vim.
According to the StackShare community, Vim has a broader approval, being mentioned in 850 company stacks & 890 developers stacks; compared to Emacs, which is listed in 99 company stacks and 73 developer stacks.