Finally: TextMate Updates Just Weeks Away

TextMate 2 is on its way!

TextMate users, rejoice: after years of waiting, TextMate 2 is just around the corner. But is it too late?

The official announcement is here. A public beta will be available before Christmas.

TextMate, for those of you unaware, is a much-loved coder’s text editor for OS X. A few years ago, it was pretty much the coder’s editor, despite being a relative newcomer to the scene.

Time passed, and an update, TextMate 2, was promised. TextMate’s loyal users waited. And waited. Developer Allan Odgaard posted an update in mid-2009 to reassure them:

Progress is steady, it is starting to take shape, and the end is in sight … TextMate 2 is no minor facelift. It’s a major undertaking with a long timeline and its final form isn’t fully settled. I don’t want to hype vaporware, and I don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up before I know I can meet their expectations.

But still, users waited. As the years went by, some started to drift away. A quick glance at this Hacker News thread gives you a good idea of some of the paths TextMate users have trodden in those intervening years.

TextMate’s developers were keen to stress all along that version 2 would be released when it was done, and not before. They were determined to take as long as necessary to reach that point.

The downside of this approach is that fresh newcomers have come along and enticed users away, the cross-platform Sublime Text among them. As one commenter on the Hacker News thread remarks:

It’s good to hear, but it’ll have to be pretty damn impressive to retake the ground lost to Sublime Text 2 and vim.

Who knows? TextMate earned its reputation by being pretty damn impressive first time round.

What do you think? Are you one of those people who moved on to a different editor, or have you stuck with TextMate all these years? What are you hoping to see in the update?

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  • Berend

    It is a public alpha release and not a beta.

    I have stuck with TextMate all these years because I regard it as very good. The bundle system works very well. Many bundles are continuously updated. There are bundles (e.g. the bundles for R and LaTeX) which are a pleasure to use and are worth the price of TextMate.

    What am I hoping for?
    - faster find in project with a few more options
    - split windows
    - I’ll see

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Giles TurnbullGiles Turnbull is a freelance writer in England. He also writes for the Press Association and The Morning News. You can find out more at his website, and follow him on Twitter @gilest.

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