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Best 10 text editors for Web Designers and Developers

April 17th, 2017

01. Notepad++

Platform: Windows
Price: Free

We admit there’s a whiff of nostalgia about this entry, given that Notepad++ was one of the earliest text editors we used on Windows. But the app deserves its place on this list, because it can still compete with the best of them. For no money whatsoever, you get a capable (if sometimes workmanlike) editor with plenty of features, and you can also mess about with the interface to make it better suit your requirements.

02. Atom

Platform: OSX 10.8 or later, Windows 7 & 8, Linux
Price: Free

Launched in 2008, GitHub has become the code storage and development site of choice worldwide, and so any tool it releases is going to cause a big stir.

That’s certainly been the case with Atom. Dubbed “a hackable text editor for the 21st Century”, it’s designed to be simple to use out of the box, but also easily expandable using hundreds of packages.

Since launching in invite-only private beta early last year, it’s now fully open source and available to download for free.
03. Brackets

Platform: Windows/OS X/Linux
Price: Free

Adobe’s open-source text editor is created from the code that builds the web, and the developers note that if you can code in Brackets, then you can code on Brackets. In other words, although you initially get a simple, usable editor, seasoned programmers should be able to hack it to their liking.
04. Sublime Text

Platform: Windows/OS X/Linux
Price: $70/about £45

Available across all of the three main desktop platforms, Sublime Text is a great general-purpose text editor that offers plenty of power to anyone working on websites. It’s especially well suited to anyone wedded to the keyboard, providing powerful shortcuts and tools to leap about a document, make (multiple) selections, filter the file, and quickly make edits.

Switching between projects is also lightning fast — perfect for anyone juggling multiple clients. Sublime Text may be downloaded and evaluated for free, but a licence must be purchased for continued use.
05. Vim

Platform: Windows/OS X/Linux/Android/iOS
Price: Free

Vim is essentially the text editor people flock to when they look at the others on this list and consider them toys for newbs. There’s a pretty steep learning curve, due to its overtly techie nature; but if you can cling on or are just looking for something more powerful to work with, you’ll find plenty to like in Vim’s flexible tools, customisation and macros, and efficiency-oriented commands.
06. Emacs

Platform: Windows/OS X/Linux
Price: Free

There are various incarnations of Emacs but one of the most often-used is GNU Emacs; a free, extensible, customisable text editor. It’s one of the most powerful editors out there and as such takes a while to learn your way around, but if you have very particular requirements you may find this is the one for you.
07. Komodo Edit

Komodo Edit
Platform: Windows/OS X/Linux
Price: Free

If you don’t need all the features of a full IDE, you can get the text editor from Komodo IDE for free. Komodo Edit is a multi-language editor that does multiple selections, autocomplete, tracks changes and has a Markdown viewer.
08. Buffer Editor

Buffer editor
Platform: iOS
Price: $3.99

If coding on the go is your thing, this is a great option for iOS devices. It’s designed to make it easy to make quick changes to your website and will sync with Dropbox and SSH/SFTP servers. It’s also a fully-equipped code editor that you can use to develop software on your touch device, should you wish.
09. Webuilder

Platform: Windows
Price: €39.95

Webuilder is designed to be fast, easy-to-use and accessible for beginners, yet powerful enough for advanced coders. There’s syntax highlighting that supports HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, PHP, Ruby, XML and more; it enables you to edit directly on your servers via FTP, SFTP and FTPS; there are auto-quotes and auto-brackets; a CSS prefixer and loads of special functions for JavaScript and PHP. Definitely worth a look.

Categories: Developer ToolsWeb Development