BareBones Software BBEdit 9
Let’s take a quick trip back to 1991.
- Fast and efficient, non-modal search/find makes us grin manically, ability to edit in results windows
- Can be complex to set up and tweak, text-completion is and sluggish, UI feels dated, no Windows version
Overall, BBEdit 9 is an essential update for existing users, but, regretfully, there’s little truly remarkable here to stop Web designers and coders with itchy feet defecting to the likes of TextMate and Coda.
Price$ 198.46 (AUD)
Let’s take a quick trip back to 1991. Photoshop was still on Version 1 and Windows 3.0 had only recently been belched out. In Mac-land, System 6 ruled the roost, and TeachText (SimpleText’s forerunner) was the editor of choice. Rumour has it that BBEdit evolved as a bare-bones editor to usurp TeachText and deal with Apple’s application’s inability to process files larger than 32KB.
Fast-forward 17 years and BBEdit can hardly be classified as bare-bones anymore. The feature-packed editor includes support for a huge array of programming languages, has absurdly long menus, and preferences that make your head swim.
However, in the area where it matters most — working with text — it’s still something of a champion. Eschewing page layout and text formatting, it’s carved a niche in the realms of tech-heavy Web design.
This new update isn’t as radical as those added for BBEdit 8, which ushered in major changes to the application’s interface, among other things. Instead, refinements and evolution are the order of the day. Several changes are likely to make seasoned BBEdit users exclaim, “about bloody time”, not least non-modal search and find windows.
You’re finally no longer forced into Copy/Find/Paste/Don’t Find/Copy/Find/Paste madness to set up multiple Find & Replace pairings. Now, the dialog happily works alongside your documents, meaning you’re never locked out — you can even run a bunch of searches and/or replacements simultaneously.
It’s this thinking that’s kept BBEdit relevant, rather than trying to distract users with gloss and arbitrary interface changes (take note, Adobe), and the workflow smoothing continues into results windows.
Now, rather than continually opening, editing and closing documents from results windows, you can edit and save directly within them. Again, this is a minor change, conceptually at least, but in terms of workflow, it’s almost magical and a huge timesaver.
Other small tweaks also prove handy, making the programme quicker to work with: a live character- and word-count display (which can be toggled between a selection and the entire document) is great, and Find Differences provides more usable results for file comparisons.
Elsewhere, the update is more hit-and-miss. The new Scratchpad provides a constantly saved space for dumping text and notes, and everything’s automatically retained after a relaunch.
That sounds great, but it’s unclear how practical users will find it — we forgot about it pretty quickly. Projects — the revamped File Groups — are somewhat useful for quick access to a project’s files and rifling through them, but it’s too easy to end up with loads of open files. And, sadly, the new text-completion feature feels inferior to that offered by BBEdit’s rivals, rarely offering what you want, but regularly displaying lots of things you don’t.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Acer Swift 7
Huawei Mate 9
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Lexar® Portable SSD
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Google Daydream VR headset
Surface Pro 4
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Google's new AI aims to end abusive online comments using 'Perspective'
- Village Roadshow aims to block 40 pirate sites
- Analysts peer into Microsoft's rumored Windows 10 Cloud
- Google lets users get social with Maps
- Microsoft unveils a bonanza of security capabilities
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- Horizon Zero Dawn review
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Japan's pop culture, anime-friendly, J-Pop shrine, Kanda Myojin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCDevops Consultant - 12 month contractVIC
- FTJava Developer - Fixed Term ContractQLD
- TPMobile DeveloperWA
- CCSolution Architect - Financial applicationsVIC
- FTDeveloper/ ProgrammerSA
- FTSenior Security Sales SpecialistVIC
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- CCIT Infrastructure ArchitectNSW
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- CCApplication Solution Designer (Automation) - Finance - Contract - Sydney CBDNSW
- FTSenior Software EngineerVIC
- FTOnline Solutions AnalystNSW
- FTIt Security and process analystNSW
- FTConsultant Business AnalystQLD
- FTLevel 3 EngineerNSW
- CCFullstack .Net DeveloperNSW
- TPTechnical Support Resource-Skype for BusinessVIC
- FTProject Manager (Software product development)VIC
- TPAnalyst Workplace SupportVIC
- TPBI & Report Developer (SQL Developer)QLD
- FTOracle Forms PL/SQL Analyst ProgrammerQLD
- TPDrupal Developer - Immediate startQLD
- CCSystem EngineerSA
- TPDigital Strategist - Newcastle BasedNSW
- TPIT Project Officer - TMRQLD