Preslav Mihaylov

Speaker, Software Engineer, Technical Trainer. Passionate about computer science, presentations and reading books

tmux – A Terminal Multiplexer

Last time, I wrote about why I think everyone should try using a bare bones text editor like vim at least for a while.

After such an experience, some might give up on it, while others might want to switch to vim full-time.

For the latter – congratulations!

But inevitably, a problem will occur with this approach, especially if you are working on a big project – using bare bones vim for big projects is quite unproductive compared to IDEs.

I used to use vim on my hobby side projects and it did a great job, but once I tried using it on a project with a large code base and several different build variants, things started to get messy and I preferred using the IDE.

Some of you might disagree with me, I have seen people prefer sticking solely to bare bones vim.

But in my experience, apart from the text editing boost it gives you due to its awesome user interface, all the auxiliary tools you need to maintain a big project are invaluable and not easily available from a bare bones vim.

So, determined to amend that, I started exploring many different tools and plugins to enable my vim to challenge the productivity my IDE provides.

In this new series of articles, I will share my favorite tools which help me keep myself productive everyday by using vim.

In the first one, the topic is my all-time favorite vim add-on – tmux.


This article is part of the sequence  Boost Your VIM where I share my favorite vim plugins and tools which can greatly optimize your productivity and make you a better keystroke ninja.

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How can vim make you a better developer

The first time I encountered vim was during a Linux System Administrator course I attended a while ago.

Didn’t really know much about Linux back then. It just sounded quite fancy.

During the course, the lecturer often typed in that 3 word command vim and edited some stuff.

“Gee, that looks cool”, I thought!

So, determined to look cool myself, I got back home, opened a terminal, typed in the magic words and voila! – I was inside vim.

So, with a great wish to write my first Hello World txt file in vim, I started hitting keys on my keyboard. And nothing was happening.

Some strange beeps started coming out of nowhere and I felt utterly frustrated!

So, my goal quickly shifted from typing anything, to exiting vim. Yeah, you probably know what follows.

A key-hitting berserk got me while doing everything I can to exit vim. Finally, after failing my first clash with the editor, I was so thankful to have the X key at the top right of my terminal emulator.

Now, this story should sound pretty familiar if you ever tried using vim. Well, eventually you learn how to exit it, and you learn how to type in symbols.

But there is so much more to it. The endless sets of key-combos can leave you wondering what the heck you did after accidentally hitting a key.

Nowadays, vim is the most popular text editor out there. Even some Windows users tend to use it although being an indigenous Unix utility.

But what’s the point? There are so many IDEs out there. Why would anyone bother poisoning his life with an endless vim frustration, when he can just install the first Javascript IDE google suggests.

Well, although it is probably not suitable for any project, there are some great benefits in sticking with vim at least for a while.

The greatest one being the user interface. However, the focus of this article is not that. Many articles can be found on the subject and perhaps I will make one in the future.

Today, we will explore the much less highlighted merits of the vim editor.

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You can’t succeed by slacking off

Many times in our lives, we are presented with a choice of what route to take. One is the easy route, and the other is the hard one.

For example, I constantly get messages from people in Facebook, trying to convince me to join them in their quest for easy money through multi-level marketing.
They go on saying that they don’t want to be like those poor people destined to work hard all their lives and get nothing in the end.
It’s better to work smart and get to the final destination of being wealthy with a shortcut. That will take you several months, they say.

And then you have the option to grow in your career, advance your skills and become a master in your craft. And that will take great amount of effort, years of consistency and discipline and great endurance.

The first one sounds more preferable, right?

But I recently watched a movie, called “Big Fish”, which had a scene where the main character could choose to get to his destination via two routes – the easy one, which most people prefer, and the hard one, which no one dares to take.

What the character said was “The more difficult something became, the more rewarding it is in the end”.

But isn’t that just some empty talk which is not applicable to life?

In this article, I am going to share with you the lessons I have learnt concerning this issue and my experience with it.

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The Books I Read in 2017

The past year, I was able to read 50 books. Some of which I read more than once.

Today, I will share with you what I think about all these books.

In general, I try to read books which I can directly apply to the things I am interested in – computer science, presenting, personal finance and personal development.

Apart from them, I read some fiction books as well, as I find some of them interesting. They help me sleep better at night.

But by the end of the year, I realized that there are lessons in some classical fiction books. That is why I tried reading some more uncommon books for me, such as “The Picture of Dorian Grey”.

I realized that you can learn all the things you read in self-help books, but they are hidden in the stories from fiction books.

The information is not so obvious, but if you look closely enough, you can see it.

So my goal for next year is to read some of those books as well.

Books from Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Hemingway. Bad thing is, I’m not very good in analyzing texts, so I can’t see the lessons those books show me. But, hopefully, at one point I will be able to grasp the gems from them as well.

Now, let’s look at the list from 2017.

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Hosting an AMA Feed in 2 days!

After my most recent post (How to properly use macros in C) I was invited to host an AMA (Ask Me Anything) session at AMA Feed.

This is a site, where various professionals hold sessions where anyone can ask them questions about their career, specialty and themselves.

If you want to get in touch with me, then feel free  to join and ask me anything!

My session will be on the 23rd December (In 2 days!) 10 AM Eastern Standard Time (7 PM GMT+2, Bulgarian time).

And this is a link to the session itself: https://TechAMA.com/472982

Looking forward to hearing from you there.

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