sed: one stream editor to rule them all


I enjoy UNIX, a lot. And A few weeks ago I was reading a book about unix when I stumbled upon one of the oldest editors in unix and that is ed. The more I looked into it the more I realised where a lot of vim featurs come from.

  • well, sed is very much the stream version of ed.


Small list of stuff that sed does:

  • sed will replace in the stream the same way vim does by using s\.


I was looking at converting some simple latex files into markdown. I know pandoc would have done the job but these were pretty simple, and some of them had some errors in them that I did not want to fix. So I sed this :

sed "s\[\]end{document}\ \g" rprt2-methodology.tex | \
sed '1,29d'  |\
sed "s\[\]end{enumerate}\ \g"  |\
sed "s\[\]section{\# \g"  |\
sed "s\[\]subsection{\## \g"  |\
sed "s\}\ \g"
sed "s\[\]section\# \g" rprt1-bugs-and-omissions.tex \
  |sed "s\[\]item \- \g" \
  |sed "s\[\]begin{compactitem}\ \g" \
  |sed "s\[\]end{compactitem}\ \g" \
  |sed "/end/ d" \
  |sed "/^[ ]*$/ d" \
  |sed "/^$/ d" \
  |sed "1,13 d" \
  |sed "8,12 d" \
  |sed "s\[\]verb\ \g" \
  |head -n 50

Ok, it might seem like a lot, but how did I develop this? By simply running each until I had the result I wanted. To repeat and improve i used fc , this way I would run them one by one, and then improve until I got the result I wanted.

Command Description
ā€œ\s\foo\bar\gā€ just like in vim substitutes globally
ā€œ1,50dā€ delete from line 1 to line 50