Ubercool Mac text editor comes to Windows

The cutting-edge Mac OS X text editor TextMate which won “Best Mac OS X Developer Tool” at this year’s Apple Design Awards has been ported to Windows.

Well almost. A Danish developer has taken his existing text editor written originally as a part of a revision control project and grafted onto it the power of TextMate’s extendable bundles system (with TextMate developer Allan Odgaard’s enthusiastic good wishes).

The end result is the e text editor for Windows which was released in beta form today. This is good news for Mac users who are sometimes forced into a Windows environment and for Windows-only people who can now enjoy the design goodness and power of TextMate.

The developer however is quick to point out the limitation of the beta:

This release is still a very early beta. It supports all the basic bundle features like themes language grammars snippets & commands. There is still no projects or bundle editor and there are many small features missing but all the underpinnings are in place so it will advance rapidly from here.

Visually it looks pretty much the same as TextMate on a Mac. Here it is running happily on Vista RTM:


The bundles system allows users to bolt on support for the programming languages and other functions that they need without the bloat of features they don’t use.

As well as support for C JavaScript Python and Ruby the TextMate bundles for text formating in Markdown HTML and CSS have already been ported over.

This makes TextMate on Macs and e on Windows equally powerful tools for programmers bloggers web developers and writers.

The developer promises that a Linux port is not far away although (obviously) he won’t be bringing it to Macs.

Some of TextMate’s more advanced features such as a system-wide “Edit in TextMate” option which allows you to use TextMate as the editor in many other Cocoa-based apps are also available in e for Windows if you have installed cygwin which provides the Unix environment required to run the necessary shell commands.

For my part I hope that the first extra feature is the ability to set a different default font.

The e for Windows beta is available as a 30 day free trial from the developer’s web site.