Three of the Best Code Editors Around

Laptop on a desk

Alright so you’re wanting to write some real code. You’re tired of using the IDE (Integrated Development Environments) from whereever. Well it’s time to get yourself a proper code editor to make your programming a fun and fast breeze.

That’s what this blog is about. I’ve picked out the three most commonly used code editors out there and wanted to have a quick chat about them. Hopefully by the end you’ll have found the one that best suits you (if not, there are tons more less common code editors out there that may suit you better).

Let’s see what we have:

Screenshot of code in Visual Studio Editor
Screenshot of code in Visual Studio Editor

First, I’ll have to start with Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code, though you commonly see it shortened to VSCode. This is the editor that I personally use all the time, so I’m pretty biased. Though one wouldn’t need to be biased to see what makes VSCode so great.

It has tons of customizability baked in and, because it’s open source, people are constantly making it better. There are tons of user-made plugins to suit whatever you need.

Plus, the fact it has built-in Git functionality puts it a cut above the rest in my opinion.

It’s not all sunshine and daisies though, I personally experience a fairly slow startup and my laptop kind of chugs away when running it (though that could be that I have a kinda crappy computer).

Screenshot of code in Notepad++
Screenshot of code in Notepad++

Notepad++ is a very popular code editor for two big reasons.

The first is obvious. Yes, it’s free, but so are many other Code Editors., but certainly free is a big positive always.

The second and, most important reason, is that Notepad++ is simple. Seriously, it’s just a no nonsense code editor. It’s easy for beginners to get a grasp on, there’s no crazy stuff to set up or learn. You just download it and start writing. Having a no frills code editor like that lowers the burden of entry for newcomers. And Notepad++ is still robust enough that many experienced programmers continue to use it.

One potentially major downside is that it is Windows exclusive software, limiting the amount of people who can access it.

Screenshot of code in Sublime Text
Screenshot of code in Sublime Text

Sublime Text is quickly becoming one of the most used editors in professional settings. It really does have a lot going for it.

You’ll see many people debating VS Code vs Sublime Text, mainly because they have many of the same features, and many people disagree on which one does the common features better.

So right off the bat you’ll know it’s at least similar to VS Code in quality, but one thing is that Sublime Text is not Open Source. To some people this might be a bummer, but to many others this is a good thing. This means the plugins you would be installing to extend your functionality come from a curated source, ensuring compatibility and vetting. There’s arguments to both sides.

One thing about Sublime Text though. It is not free, exactly. At the time of this writing it costs $80. You are able to download a free version, but you will be inundated with ads and prompts to buy the full software.

A person putting their foot up next to a computer set against a brick wall
A person putting their foot up next to a computer set against a brick wall

And there you have it. A general and quick breakdown of three major code editors, all with a great pedigree. It’s up to you to make your choice and I’m sure whatever you choose will suit you great.

Just remember, it’s more about the code than the editor you’re writing it on. That said, a good code editor can make the writing easier/more enjoyable.