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    I am in the process of trying out emacs + evil after being a long time vim user. I started with spacemacs but quickly found it to be pretty confusing to setup and switched to just straight emacs + evil and haven’t had any issues. I have the same feeling for all the vim starter kits as well, they do too much and people don’t understand whats going on. I find immense value in setting up my environment from scratch and learning about the different pieces and how they work together. Yes spacemacs adds layers and some other configuration on top but I found it to be way more heavy handed and confusing than I needed.

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      I created the original Starter Kit for Emacs, and I fully agree. Back in the day (before the package manager) it sorta made sense, but these days the effort would is much better spent on creating and documenting individual packages that do one thing well. The Emacs Starter Kit is now fully deprecated, and the readme is just a document explaining why it was a bad idea.

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        I’m also fine with emacs+evil so far. One hangup is that evil-mode interacts badly with some other packages and modes, though. For example, I use mu4e to read mail, and evil-mode breaks its main menu. There are usually workarounds, but if you use a lot of those modes together, an all-in-one setup where someone has already done the configuration to get everything working together might save time and hassle.

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          Yeah thats a good point, to be fair I haven’t gotten far enough into spacemacs or emacs for that matter to experience many weird interactions. I have seem some weird behavior between evil and helm (I think) and some other modes (opening git interactive rebase seems to completely disable evil mode). I was going to give emacs+evil a few weeks and re-evaluate. If I end up switching back I will miss https://github.com/johanvts/emacs-fireplace though :)

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          The most useful thing is that the layers provide consistent evil bindings. They also deal with a lot the quirks when integrating evil modes into holy things. Recreating that would be a lot of work.

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            Yeah I’ve definitely noticed some of those quirks and don’t have a great way to figure out what they are and how to fix them. That’s definitely where spacemacs would come in but honestly it feels like an uphill battle of whack-a-mole.

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            I had the same experience.

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            A post that talks about how beautiful Spacemacs is, should perhaps include some images. After going to spacemacs.org I do have to agree, that it looks good (even though the default color scheme isn’t really my cup of tea, but I guess that can be changed).

            As a vim user, I once tried using emacs for org-mode (after listening to a FLOSS weekly Podcast episode on org-mode), but couldn’t get used to it. Because Spacemacs seems to offer vim bindings through evil-mode and also org-mode, I have been meaning to give Spacemacs a try, but at the moment I’m still to excited about Neovim.

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              I had my own Emacs config, nurtured it for close to 15 years when I came accross Spacemacs. I originally wanted to steal the modeline, but then the mnemonic keybindings started to sound awesome (doubly so as I was switching from QWERTY to Dvorak, and my usual keybindings were scattered all over the place, and had to relearn them anyway). Then I found the layers and liked them. I started to use it, and the way it integrates all the different packages is simply astounding.

              There are a few rough edges here and there, but it is orders of magnitudes more polished and more effective than what I could come up with after 15+ years of maintaining my own system.

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                I switched to Spacemacs a few months ago and don’t disagree with anything in here ♥. For me, the foremost reason was evil-mode: I’d been using default Emacs keybindings for a couple years and they were causing me significant physical discomfort, while vi keybindings simply don’t.