Real Programmers use TECO

As you might see (or may not see), I edit my gopher articles with TECO, which stands for Text Editor and COrrector.

To use TECO, you may have to at least know something about how a program is working.

Traditionally, TECO program does not take arguments, you just type:

$ te

in you shell prompt. Then TECO will prompt a starmark (*), indicates it is ready to work.

Now we can just play around with it. Remember, TECO is somewhat dangerous for UNIX, because you can easily erase some data and you may never recover your precious data. When TECO was used in the old days, popular systems like TOPS-10 have a fancy global version control at file system level, so one would hardly ever be worried about deleting some files.

Now we type I:


Underscore(_) represents the place of cursor. TECO's commands are not sensetive, so one might type lower case i instead of I.

Then you just type something. For example:


When finished typing, press Esc(^[) key twice.


You will see TECO display ^[ as a dollar sign($).

Stroke ^[ one time means end a command, and stroke twice execute the commands. If commands succeed, TECO would just emit a newline and a * to prompt for new commands.