Hacker News: Neovim

Saw the HN post about this new repo: GitHub - neovim/neovim: Vim-fork focused on extensibility and usability

Does a project like this have any legs? I knew from a cursory skimming of the Vim email list in the past that Bram was mostly responsible for Vim’s development, but didn’t realize that he is the only person maintaining the project (by which I mean he has the commit access and is the sole gatekeeper). Doesn’t this create a terrible “bus factor” for the folks (like me) who depend on Vim for development every day?

Five years ago (in my PM days before I became a developer/entrepreneur) I worked at a company that was doing server-side JavaScript using Tomcat and Rhino in our tech stack. This was before Node.js was a well-known thing, so we always had this fear at the company that if Apache stopped supporting Rhino that we would have to adopt and support the project ourselves just to keep our company in business. If Bram were to cease involvement with Vim (gets bored, fed up, outside interests take over, physically incapable, etc.), is that the impetus for the Vim community trying to figure out what fork becomes the “official” path going forward?

I realize some of this might sound super alarmist since we could probably all survive just fine on Vim 7.4 for the rest of our development careers, but I was curious the opinion of some folks with more Vim history than I have.

I’m looking forward to seeing what comes of neovim. It looks like it has a lot of support behind it. And yes, Bram holds all the keys…which is one of the issues with helping vim evolve. The guys at Floobits ran into this when trying to get some async (well, timeout anyway) patches accepted into core so their tech could work for remote pairing. Bram just hasn’t merged it in for 6 months now. Floobits News: Adding setTimeout to Vim

For a while I custom built their fork to use with tmux in iTerm which had the ‘timers’ functionality built in so that I could remote pair with folks using sublime on a project I was working on. Hopefully neovim can help move the state of the art forward a bit…