I've long wanted to find a lightweight CSV editor that displays CSV data as tabular cells and behaves like a spreadsheet for a few functions (navigation, sorting, moving columns, etc), but saves data reliably in CSV (or TSV, etc.) format with no surprises.
Recently, I've been using the Atom text editor with the tablr plugin for this purpose. Atom is free OSS text editor similar to Sublime Text. It's cross-platform, easier to setup than Sublime and certainly much easier to understand than console-based text editors.
I'm curious what people think of recommending this combination to learners and newish users for data entry, inspection and cleaning. Specifically:
- What are people's opinion of Atom/tablr for functionality? (Download them and try it out, let me know)
- In my experience it's pretty good setup for inspection/cleaning, moderate for data entry.
- What essential functionality may be missing?
- To me, creating a new file from scratch is a little finicky.
- Is new text editor + package a high hurdle for a workshop?
- Would Atom be a good editor to recommend anyway? If so that makes this easier.
- Are there other options and how do they compare? (I've looked a lot and always come up empty)
- What would be a good venue to test this or a similar tool for ease of adoption?
Via twitter, Jason Colditz recommends the TextFX plugin for Notepad++ users. Perhaps it makes sense to recommend appropriate plugins for the text editors people are likely to use.
For the most part, I haven't seen SWC/DC actually recommend text editors for people to actually use day-to-day. (Besides
nano in the workshop). I guess it would ignite a civil war among instructors.
P.S. @tracyteal. I was going to post screen sheenshots but I think
newuser_max_images has to be set to allow this.
I'm an Atom user. Thanks for suggesting tablr. I'm checking it out now.
I really like to concept and the appearance.
- I don't immediately see an obvious way to add rows or columns.
- I renamed a column, but I don't see where that is stored. The new column name doesn't seem to appear in the file.
- I've seen a few refresh glitches where I edited a cell, but the old contents were still displayed.
I should probably check the issues on GitHub and maybe write some of these.
Neat idea, but I think tablr may need to mature a bit before I'd recommend it to novices.