I love keyboard shortcuts. Naturally, VIM would be my best friend but it was really hard to get into. While pair programming at Pivotal with expert VIMists (is that a word?) I got to learn a few tricks. Below I've gathered a subset of vim commands that have converted me. Think of it as “just enough vim” to get very comfortable.
I assume you understand the difference between insert, visual and normal mode.
As a quick summary for complete beginners to VIM, you can enter commands while in normal mode by type
: followed by the command and
enter. Here are some basic ones everyone should know.
:w saves the current file. I remember it as “writes” the file.
:q quits the file.
:wq saves the file and quits the file.
:x is equivalent. Not sure why it exists but I use it often.
:qa quits all the buffers.
When you're pasting blocks of text from outside of vim, you should run
:set paste to prevent vim auto inserting tabs in your text.
So there are a few handy moves that I don't know where to put. They are definitely beyond the basics.
There are tons of plugins available for VIM that does very specific things. The one I suggest as a must have is NERDTree.
If you memorize this subset of commands I'm confident you'll begin to navigate VIM with ease…
And when I step into the building everybody's hands go … on the keyboard