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a2vimode - vi-like line editing at your Apple II prompt!


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Check out this video demonstrating the basic features.
Or this one demonstrating the new AppleSoft features.
You can try it out for yourself in an in-browser emulator.
In which case you should try reading the manual.
And of course you can download disk images from the GitHub releases page.

Introducing a2vimode

Hello, and welcome to a2vimode, which installs vi-inspired prompt-line editing facilities! Created for HackFest 2022, a part of KansasFest 2022 (an annual Apple ][ conference)

Once the HELLO program is run (at startup if you boot from the disk), all text prompts that use the standard firmware prompt routine (DOS, Monitor, BASIC, BASIC Input), will start using vi-mode.

With this software installed, you can:

  • navigate conveniently within the line you are editing
  • insert or delete text in the middle of a line
  • choose between left-arrow/backspace or the DELETE key for erasing characters
  • undo the last change you made to the input line
  • easily jump to lines of an AppleSoft BASIC program, to edit at the prompt (see AppleSoft Integration Features in the user manual)


You will also currently lose this feature from the standard Apple ][ prompt:

  • including other on-screen text as part of your input

The AppleSoft Integration Features (manual), and the "retype last line" command (CONTROL-L) are intended to shore up (and surpass) that feature for some use cases, but you may still find yourself missing it for some other situations. We apologize for the inconvenience.

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  • 2 weeks later...

This is pretty cool. I've only played around with it a little. I'm sure it gets easier once you memorize the commands and usage. In school I always used Emacs so I don't even have faint memories that can help with this. I can definitely see benefit in this though. One thing I did notice was that when I boot the VIMODE-DOS disk then clear memory with NEW, CTRL-A starts the autonumbering at 19 with increments of 10 thereafter. I think it would be better if it defaulted to starting with 10. 19,29,39...just seems very odd to me.


Edited by TheDevil'sCompass
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