[Padre-dev] Syntax highlighting

Leandro Hermida softdev at leandrohermida.com
Sun Feb 7 07:20:06 PST 2010


Hello everyone,

I am a new Padre user and am excited to see such a professional IDE
completely written using Perl and CPAN!

Whenever I look at a new Perl text editor or full-blown IDE one of the first
things I look at and am typically disappointed in is the syntax
highlighting.  I feel that with Perl 5, with it very rich syntax, it is
critical to have a syntax highlighter that is also extremely rich, granular
and makes it easier for the eye to differentiate between various components
of the syntax.

I am sure it has it's deficiencies (one being that it's not really developed
anymore) but I have always used *NEdit* as my Perl text editor of choice,
particularly because it has hands down the best built-in Perl syntax
hightlighter I've ever seen.  It has such granular highlighting of the Perl
5 syntax (like full and subtle regex highlighting, etc.) and seems to use
the right colors for every part of the syntax to make elements very clear to
the programmer.  The highlighter work very fast even with large files.  It
uses highlighting patterns and deferred (pass-2) parsing (see
http://www.nedit.org/help/patterns.php#Highlighting_Patterns)

How can one get such a rich syntax highlighter into Padre?  The different
syntax highlighters available in Padre just don't even compare.  For such an
old text editor that hasn't been really developed further since 2004, how
did NEdit get it so right?

kind regards,
Leandro Hermida
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