Once upon a time, developers all used text editors — supercharged programs that allowed them to write and edit their programs. These text editors seemed simple on the outside, but were designed for developer productivity, and included a huge number of features meant for that purpose. How are text editors different from today’s IDEs (integrated development environments)? More importantly, how are they better than IDEs, and what can they teach us about programming, software design, and the tools that we use? In this talk, Colin Fulton traces through the history of text editing (especially on Unix), and how understanding this history can provide us with a greater appreciation of the power these programs offer developers.