Tue, 28. May 2013 – 17:17

It is a while now, that I have been using Geany for a good portion of the code development I am doing. I came across the very nice editor and small-footprint IDE last year at the FrOSCon (Free and Open Source Software Conference).

Geany is a text editor using the GTK2 toolkit with basic features of an integrated development environment. It was developed to provide a small and fast IDE, which has only a few dependencies from other packages. It supports many filetypes and has some nice features.

Always keeping my eyes open for tools to fit into my work-flow and help me get things done, I made a mental note concerning the project. However it took a little bit of time before I actually went to download and install the package – but when finally getting around to do it, I almost immediately liked Geany. The only trouble I had (and sometimes still have) was with the integration into the larger set of applications running on my MacBook pro. It was this integration – or rather the lack thereof – which at some point in time also had me switch from GNU Emacs to Aquamacs. While in many ways I am quite happy with the latter one, there is still the trouble-some process of customizing settings: even though the graphical frontend nicely integrated with the rest of the Aqua-type applications under Mac OS X – probably most important of all: the key shortcuts – the configuration basically is still very much the same as with GNU Emacs. This means that simple adjustments like “Make the indentation level four spaces wide and use white space for tab” is quite hard to do (in fact I am still struggeling with that). Enter Geany: the configuration settings are well organized and easy to navigate and adjust.

Geany ICE preferences

But okay… I am starting to go down a serious rabbit-hole with this. What I actually started out to mention was something else: Ever since updating the Geany version available through MacPorts I am having trouble with cut and paste of text. While marking text is just fine, then inserting it somewhere else simply won’t do. I already have been spending some time searching online for possible resolutions, but as far as I am able to read up on it, this still is a Mac-specific issue in certain configurations. Hence in order to make use of most recent changes (and hopefully fixes), I also have been installing Geany from source manually: simply clone from the project’s Git repository, configure and build. Though this – at least until now – has not resolved the above mentioned problem, at least today I discovered an interesting configuration option, which a) eather is rather new or b) I have been overlooking it until now.

  --enable-the-force      enable if you are Luke Skywalker and the force is
                          with you [default=no]

Since I am not Luke Skywalker disabling this option by default sounds quite reasonable. However now I know such an option exists of course I am tempted to check what it is for anyway and what it will do. Maybe this is worth playing with some time…