Friday, October 13, 2017

BBEdit 12

Bare Bones Software (tweet):

The setting “Surround selected text when typing matching delimiters” allows you to control whether typing an opening delimiter will surround the selection range. This is independent from whether delimiters are auto-paired when typing an opening delimiter with no text selected.


When performing an Extract operation, you can now use a Grep replacement pattern in the “Replace” field (in Find or Multi-File Search) to transform the extraction results.


Added an “Expert” preferences pane, which provides direction to the Expert Preferences help book. The “Restore Defaults” button in this pane will reset all expert preferences to their factory defaults.


The Live Search command now supports grep pattern matching when the “Grep” option is enabled, and stored patterns are available under the “Saved patterns” (“g”) popup.


The navigation bar now contains an item indicating the current Git branch (for documents that are in a Git working copy).

I’ve been happily using BBEdit for somewhere around 22 years now. As a user, I appreciate that it pretty much never does anything to annoy me. This is rare. With almost every other app, I’m always thinking to myself: if I had the time, I’d write my own version that works the way I want. As a developer, I admire that Bare Bones has been able to keep the product thriving for so many years with a steady stream of free and paid updates. They’ve done a good job of balancing adding new features, modernizing the code (incrementally rewriting in different languages and for different APIs), and keeping it (seemingly) bug-free. The next test will be whether BBEdit completes the transition to Cocoa before macOS 10.14 adds “compromises” for 32-bit apps. I’m optimistic because it looks like much of the app has already been rewritten over the last few major versions.

Jason Snell:

I do a lot of text and data formatting in BBEdit, and one of the great additions in this version is a Columns editing command, that enables quick processing of comma- and tab-delimited text ranges—you can cut, copy, delete, and rearrange columns. You might think that sounds like an esoteric feature, but I’ve probably pasted a tab-delimited text block from BBEdit into Microsoft Excel purely for column management hundreds of times at this point.

Wojtek Pietrusiewicz:

BBEdit also has a wonderful manual which is totally worth reading. It’s probably the first software manual that I have read in my life.

Bare Bones Software:

We’ve officially sunsetted TextWrangler and it’s not compatible with High Sierra. Time to switch! 🙂

Update (2017-10-14): Dr. Drang:

That may seem like damning with faint praise, but if much of your professional time is spent using software (and I suspect that’s true for most of you), you know what a ringing endorsement it really is. And it’s in keeping with the Bare Bones motto: it doesn’t suck.

Adam C. Engst:

As with any product that has been around for 25 years, there was a lot of old code in BBEdit, and one of the primary goals for BBEdit 12 was to modernize its code base. That’s work that users seldom see, but there are a few improvements that you might notice. For instance, BBEdit can now take advantage of intrinsic macOS features like Split View, and some controls now rely on system versions rather than custom implementations. Contextual menus now even include services!


So you can try all of BBEdit 12’s features for 30 days, and if you choose not to purchase a license after that, features that have green stars next to them during the trial will be disabled. The end result is a text editor that has even more features than TextWrangler did — the Preview window, for instance.

Update (2017-10-17): John Gruber:

BBEdit’s longevity and continuing excellence are simply remarkable. I’ve been using it since sometime in 1992 (version 2.2?), and in 1993 I bought the first commercial release, version 2.5. 25 years.

4 Comments RSS · Twitter

It's still 32-bit, why oh why can't they make it 64-bit, it's only been 10 years....

I assume reliance on Carbon libraries prevented the switch?

I purchased BBEdit less than a year ago, but still am outside of the free upgrade window. Situations like this make me wish subscription models were more common for indie software... just start paying when you start using an app, no need to evaluate update histories and strategize when to make a purchase decision.

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