BBEdit [was: Re: [OS X TeX] Re: Mac OS X 10.2 permissions/TeXShop]

Holger Frauenrath mail at
Sun Sep 8 23:29:15 EDT 2002

On Sunday, September 8, 2002, at 10:38 PM, Richard Seguin wrote:

> I've downloaded the demo version of BBEdit and have started playing 
> with it. After having been spoiled by the Cocoa character smoothing in 
> TeXShop and iTeXMac,  I'm not enchanted with the way that it renders 
> characters, and find it more difficult to read. However, I also 
> downloaded the BBEdit-TeXTools plugin, and it has a nice syntax 
> coloring feature that allows you to color every math mode string from 
> $ to $. This is a nice feature for me whose most frequent error, by 
> far, is missing closing $ in math mode strings, and I have large 
> numbers of math mode strings in in-line topology and group/semigroup  
> text. I would like to see this in TeXShop. This idea could be improved 
> upon, I think, not by coloring the text itself, but the background of 
> the text—say by a very light color—so that the existing color 
> syntaxing can still be applied. And while I'm at it, I'd like to be 
> able to color brackets separately from everything else, like iTeXMac 
> allows.

It is funny that you mention that. After writing on the LaTeX panel to 
this list, I have also sent feedback to Barebones, because I tried to 
use BBEdit as a TeX editor recently, and it is, let's say, a much 
better HTML editor right now. This is part of what I sent them:

> However, in some aspects, the user experience using BBEdit for writing 
> LaTeX lags behind its use as an HTML editor. I would like to add that 
> I am sure at least some of the requested features could be implemented 
> as a BBEdit plugin, but the current plugins available are limited, 
> and, more importantly, they are out of date and will not run on MaOS X 
> (I think).
> The most important improvements I would like to see are:
> 1) an option to colorize mathematical environments other than $ $ 
> (maybe in a different color), such as \[ \], \( \), and the math, 
> displaymath, equation environments etc.
> 2) an option to colorize brackets { }
> 3) an option to highlight (color, underline) certain commands for the 
> document structure differently, such as \part, \chapter, \section etc.
> 4) an option to highlight (color, underline) certain commands in the 
> preamble differently, such as \usepackage etc.
> 5) a central place to control the syntax coloring in TeX mode (which 
> is currently done in the Preferences *and* with the menu item 
> "Configure TeX Coloring" - it took me very long to discover the > latter)
> Other improvements that would be great are:
> 6) a menu similar to the HTML "Markup" menu for inserting TeX 
> commands, and maybe also for other TeX related tasks
> 7) a palette similar to the HTML palette for the same purposes
> 8) a more intelligently structured display of sections etc. in the 
> function popup menu in TeX mode
> And some general improvements I would like to see in BBEdit are:
> 9) Better font rendering. This is actually the only detail that I find 
> annoying about BBEdit. Everything except 9pt Monaco (which I find too 
> small) looks just horrible!
> 10) A more structured HTML palette (this would also hold true for a 
> similar TeX palette). I find myself searching things on the palette a 
> lot. The palette should visually categorize the commands corresponding 
> to the HTML "Markup" window. It would actually be great to have 
> "collapsable sections" on the palette to display a certain group of 
> commands only (corresponding to the structure of the "Markup" menu). 
> See the "Formatting Palette" in MS Word for an example of what I mean 
> (I apologize for the choice of my example). It should remember the 
> state of the collapsed/expanded sections, when it is closed/reopened, 
> and it should stick to the screen edges.
> And finally, one *really cool* feature would be to have collapsable 
> sections (e.g. parts, chapters, section etc. in TeX).

I guess that feedback from other registered BBEdit users would 
certainly help the cause ...

As for your question on the "tag feature": BBEdit actually has quite 
the same thing. It is hidden in the "function popup menu" (why so ever 
...), which is the "curved f" in the toolbar. You can go to parts, 
chapters, sections etc., but also to certain environments (like center) 
and figures. The choice of environments displayed seems a bit arbitrary 
to me, the list is unstructured, and all figures show up just as 
"figure" ... so there is still some room to improvement.

Best regards

Mac TeX info, resources, and news can be found at:
List archives can be found at:
Threaded list archives can be found at:
See message headers for list info.

More information about the MacOSX-TeX mailing list