Atom No More?

Yesterday one of my library colleagues at Grinnell College posted an announcement that Atom would be retired (sunset) in December 2022. Ouch, I have a lot of workflows that depend on Atom!

So, today part of my mission is to begin the process of migrating workflows, both work-related and personal/at-home, from Atom to its most logical replacement, Visual Studio Code or VS Code as it’s largely known in the development community. The other part of today’s mission was to update this blog, something I’ve not done in far too long!

What better time to begin using VS Code than right now, to edit this blog post? So, that’s what I did, er, am doing.

This could be a long story, but I’ll keep it short and just share the links, mostly. I’ll begin on my personal Mac Mini, where I’m editing now, so I can test the entire process before repeating it on my other Mac workstations.

Install Using Homebrew

I like to use homebrew whenever possible to manage installations on my Mac. On this Mac Mini I found this Homebrew Formulae and put it to use… All done. Nice!

Adding a Command Line / Terminal Shortcut

I’ve gotten quite used to launching Atom in my working directory with a simple command of the form atom .. Can I do the same with VS Code? Sure! I used the guidance found in How to Open Visual Studio Code From Your Terminal to set that up. Piece of cake. I love finding timely, not stale, advice that just works!

Now I can simply navigate to a project folder on my Mac and type code . to open it all in VS Code. Sweet!

Replacing My Atom Packages

There are quite a few, nothing that I’ve written personally, but lots of published packages/extensions borrowed from others. That’s one of the things I love(d) about Atom. On my Mac Mini, and most other Macs, that list looks something like this:

My Installed Atom Packages

I told you there were quite a few. I’m posting this image of my list just so I have a document as I begin to build the same into VS Code. Oh, when I added the above image to this post, I did so by dragging my screen-capture from my desktop directly into the VS Code EXPLORER panel (left side of my window), just like I used to do with Atom. Nice!

I’ll take my time and start replacing these as-needed. First up…

Replacing ISO 8601 timestamp

This Atom package allows me to add the current date and time, in ISO 8601 format, to the frontmatter of a blog post like the one you are reading now. I found and followed this documentation to set it up in VS Code. In Atom I put my cursor at the point where my timestamp was needed, and went to the Packages menu to insert it. In VS Code there doesn’t appear to be such a menu, but the documentation says I can use command-shift-P to open the “command pallette”, where I can scroll to or search for the command I want to engage. Another piece of cake!

The result of inserting the current timestamp should be reflected in the frontmatter of this blog post. 😀

More Goodies

This morning I updated this entry after adding a Duplicate file or directory command using the Duplicate Action extension from the marketplace. It works very nicely!

What’s could be better? Well, finding a list of 10 “must-have” VSCode extensions and working my way through them!

Luna Paint

I just stumbled across another handy VSCode extension, Luna Paint. I’ve installed it, took all of 2 minutes to update TWO Macs, using the guidance provided in this YouTube video. It rocks! 2022-07-19T10:07:39-05:00

With any luck I’ll be able to use this post to perform much the same configuration on my other Macs, soon. I promised I’d keep this long story short, so, until next time…