Text editors

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With APL code in text files (rather that the traditional workspaces) many source code tools, including editors, can easily be used with APL. This article lists some text editors that are especially well-equipped to deal with APL.

Besides for the listed editors, there is a Language Server available for all editors that use Microsoft's Language Server Protocol (LSP).[1]

In addition, Dyalog's RIDE interface allows using most any external editor instead of its internal editor by setting the RIDE_EDITOR configuration parameter.[2]

Name Platform Features
Atom Windows, Linux, MacOS language-apl Provides syntax highlighting, indentation support.
APL Keys Android A simple notepad that supports APL characters.
Dyalog Editor Windows Basically same editor as the one built into the IDE, providing syntax colouring, auto-formatting, language help, comment handling, and tree-view.
Emacs cross-platform GNU APL mode provides shifting and prefix key input. Integrates with GNU APL to perform completion, function editing, etc.
Dyalog APL mode integrates with the Dyalog IDE so you can use Emacs instead of the built in editor, supports syntax highlighting (including correct highlighting of localized variables), indentation and convenience functions like toggling localization of variables.
Dyalog APL Input provides backtick keyboard support.
The emacs APL tutorial provides easy-to-follow instructions on how to get set up using GNU APL or Dyalog APL.
Kakoune Linux, MacOS, and Cygwin Syntax highlighting.
Mark Text Windows, Linux, macOS Syntax highlighting for code blocks.
Jupyter Notebook Windows, Linux, macOS, AIX Dyalog Jupyter Kernel provides syntax colouring and HTML/SVG rendering.
Scintilla Windows, Linux, macOS Scintillua provides syntax colouring
Sublime Text Windows, Linux, macOS APL Highlighting package enables syntax highlighting for APL, including Dyalog and APL2 dialects.
Typora Windows, Linux, macOS Syntax highlighting for code blocks.
Vim cross-platform vim-apl provides rainbow curly braces with a matching colour for , , , and : in dfns, prefix key input, and completion for quad names, keywords, and system commands.
Vim Notebook runs an interpreter in the background to evaluating code cells.
Vis Linux, macOS Scintillua provides syntax colouring
Visual Studio Code Windows, Linux, macOS APL Language extension provides syntax highlighting and snippets.
APL Language Server Client provides tool tips on primitives, prefix (e.g. backtick) completion.
APL Debug is a debug adapter

See also

  • Fonts — you might need to select an appropriate font before using a new editor


  1. Optima Systems. APL Language Server. GitHub.
  2. Dyalog Ltd. RIDE User Guide: Configuration Parameters. Retrieved 2022-01-11.
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