[arch-general] CLI diffing tool other than Vim?

Pedro Alejandro López-Valencia palopezv at gmail.com
Tue Jul 30 17:05:12 EDT 2013

On Tue, Jul 30, 2013 at 3:09 PM, Daniel Micay <danielmicay at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Tue, Jul 30, 2013 at 3:54 PM, P. A. <palopezv at gmail.com> wrote:
> > On Tue, 2013-07-30 at 20:05 +0200, Lukas Jirkovsky wrote:
> >> On 30 July 2013 16:33, Pedro Alejandro López-Valencia
> >> <palopezv at gmail.com> wrote:
> >> > IMnsHO, teach this person to use the tools already available: both
> nano,
> >> > diffutils and less are part of base. Teach person to use "diff  -u"
> > ...
> >
> >> The only diff tool comparable to vimdiff that comes into my mind is
> >> emacs diff mode.
> >
> > You are correct, but both vimdiff and emacs diff mode are sophisticated
> > crutches.
> They're not "crutches", they offer an elegant presentation of the
> differences between the files, and you can merge the changes
> one-by-one without losing context. It only takes a few minutes to
> learn, and you'll be happy you did.
Matter of opinion. I value learning from first principles. From that point
of view:  merging graphical tools are crutches if you don't have the
foggiest idea of what is actually going on underneath. If you arrived at a
later stage of the computer OS evolution game, graphical tools are what you
know and that's the hammer you use to hit all nails. My hammer is vi, btw.
Not vim; plain, old fashioned vi.

> > You should learn the basic tools to be able to understand the
> > sophisticated ones later and make good use of them.
> That's absolutely untrue, there's no secret knowledge you'll gain from
> torturing yourself with an awful tool. It's only useful for generating
> patches, not merging files.

See my answer above. Using CLI UNIX tools is alien to a person who is used
to graphical tools. That doesn't mean they are actually awful, only alien.


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