# [OS X TeX] Wish list for BBEdit

Holger Frauenrath mail at frauenrath.com
Tue Nov 19 08:24:55 EST 2002



On Thursday, November 14, 2002, at 04:19 AM, Jan Erik Moström wrote:

> I've beta tested several versions of BBEdit, including this one.
>
> I've earlier collected comments/requests, from this and other mailing
> lists, for how BBEdit can be improved when it comes to LaTeX/TeX and
> sent it to BBSW. They were quite interested in how BBEdit can be
> improved regarding TeX/LaTex but they have some difficulty in knowing
> what needs to be done ... they are not TeX/LaTeX users themselves.
[snip]
>
> So write down a list, and try to motivate/describe why a certain
> feature
> is needed and perhaps a few ideas for how it should work, and send it
> to
> support.
>

I hope Barebones also forwarded you the emails they have received
themselves regarding this topic. I sent them some wishes I had for
BBEdit as a LaTeX editor about half a year ago. I have never heard back
from them, though (I actually did not expect to). I would like to
present what I think would make BBEdit a good LaTeX editor to this
list, because I hope other people will like some of it. I really think
it would be good if as many people as possible would write to
Barebones. And may be somebody else has a better way of explaining the
things to the folks at Barebones than I do, so that they will better
understand why a certain feature is necessary and how it should be
implemented.

I guess that many of the following features will remind people of
Alpha. This is, of course, not a conincidence, because I have used
Alpha under MacOS 9 for a long time. I must admit that I just cannot
get used to AlphaTk, but I do hope that AlphaX will finally come out
with a compelling interface and features.

So how about BBEdit? I have been using BBEdit as a HTML editor, and I
am very happy with it. Basically, all that a good "LaTeX mode" would
have to do is copy some of the features implemented for HTML editing:

- Better syntax coloring. First of all, I think, a unique place for
setting syntax coloring (right now, it is under the preferences and
under the TeX mode menu). I think this would be good for all other
modes, too, for that matter. As for the coloring itself: coloring of
strings in inline math modes (between \$ and others). I guess that some
people would also like to have other mathematical environments in
general completely colored, I think. Coloring of brackets. Different
coloring of all sectioning commands.

- A menu and a palette to insert TeX Commands similar to their HTML
menu and HTML palette. It would be nice to have some sort of
intelligent insertion (like placing the cursor in the brackets of a
\command{} etc.), and configurable keyboard shortcuts.

- A mechanism similar to "close current tag" that would for example
insert \end{current_environment} to the current environment.

- Syntax checking would be cool.

- Collapsable/expandable sections. This would definitely be a really
cool one. Not only would you have something like tags that you can move
to in a document, but it would also allow you to display only those
sections you are actually working on.

Any more ideas?
Holger

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