Thursday, October 8, 2009

Ahhh, that is how you use VI!

So it has always been a mystery of how to use VI, not sure why, but it was always a challange. Well, with the advent of the Android based phones (specifically the T-Mobile G1) and free ssh clients (Thanks to the boys over at ConnectBot) I now can SSH into my web hosting account anywhere and view/edit/add files at will. Well, as you may know when you are SSH'd into the apps the only way to really work with files is using VI. With that new discovery and ability I had to dig deep and finally learn VI.

Before I go on, some people might ask, why in the world would you want to edit files through VI on your G1? My answer is this...Target, Walmart, the Mall or any other place that has clothes or shoes. To me they all look the same and all go together, but with the same fervor I share my excitement about technology my wife shares the same fervor and excitement about shopping. I see endless possibilites with SSH over my G1 and she see the endless possibilities of outfits and accessories. They go hand in hand pretty well, especially when I am thinking, I wonder if I could make this code do this..

So back to VI, the buys over at ConnectBot did an amazing job on making the G1 work flawlessly with the SSH shell and that is what got me past my hang ups with VI. I was able to finally understand how to enter and exit insert mode and master command mode. Don't ask me why it took me so long, but for some reason it clicked outside Ross Dress for Less in the parking lot as I google'd some tutorials. I was able to right a PHP script and an .htaccess file. I even went as far as to wget the ZendFramework and un-tar it and sym link my library folder back to the Zend library and call an .sh script to create the "quickstart" app. The possibilities are endless I tell you!!

At this point I expect to hear from some iPhone user about SSH apps and how this has been around forever..but can you say open and iPhone in the same senteance...

So the simple use of VI,

hit "i" once
type what you want to type
hit "esc" once
type ":wq"

you just did it. you just started the edit, finished the edit and saved. Great tool.

Thanks again to all the teams that make open software work.