Back to VS Code

Not so Sublime.

September 21, 2022

2 minute read

I’ve found myself slowly migrating back to VS Code after over a year using Sublime Text. I keep running into missing syntax highlighting and other niceties, resulting in a lot of time spent searching for comparable solutions. Though to be fair (to be fairrr), the issues are mostly with templating languages, and new ways of sticking HTML and CSS into a blender by the JavaScript community.

Managing expectations

I don’t think the problem is with Sublime Text, I think the problem is that I’m expecting too much.

Sublime Text is a fantastic text editor because that’s the focus. It’s not an integrated development environment like VS Code. I can install packages that turn Sublime Text into an IDE, but it’s like duct-taping a ceiling fan to a car to mow the lawn. Just use a lawn mower.

To take this metaphor even farther, past the other Staten Island and around Cape Horn, it’s not ideal to use your lawn mower to prune your bonsai trees. VS Code has too much going on when you just want to write text, which is what Sublime’s minimal interface is ideal for.

As I learn more JavaScript, it makes sense to use the popular tool with a bigger community. For me this means more extensions, more people contributing improvements to those extensions, and less time fiddling with my editor’s configuration.

I’m not going to stop using Sublime Text, though. It’s still a nice, fast, and low-latency text editor. I’m going to remove most of my installed packages and only use it for quick edits and writing in plain text, while I use VS Code for web development. Dedicated tools for specific tasks.

And Sublime Merge is still leagues better than the cramped and complicated Git client in VS Code. It’s passable for making commits, but don’t try cherry-picking or more advanced things. I’ve learned a lot about how Git works by using Merge and my ongoing experiments with Vim, and I think most of my struggles with Git early on were from trying to use the VS Code integration. The GitHub Pull Requests extension for VS Code is super helpful though.

Tagged with sublime text vs code

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