E8 is an Emacs-like text editor created by Bill Silver for the PDP-8 family of minicomputers. It runs under OS/8 and communicates with the user via character I/O on a console terminal that supports a few basic ANSI escape sequences.
With no graphics engine and five orders of magnitude less memory, E8 is not a modern programmer's text editor. It provides competent WYSIWYG editing with an Emacs-style interface for OS/8. The design tradeoffs make high-value use of limited core and execution time.
Contrast other popular text editors for the PDP-8:
TECO: Possibly the most powerful and popular text editor for the PDP-8,
TECO suffers from a command interface that makes Vi look user-friendly.
EDIT A simple editor for OS/8, the most widely used OS for the PDP-8. Like
TECO, it's a line editor, not an interactive screen editor like E8.
VTEDIT: Adds interactive screen editor features to
TECO. The main virtue of E8 over
VTEDIT is that it provides an Emacs interface, which is more broadly understood than either the one-off
VTEDIT commands or the arcane
TECO commands underpinning it.
You may download the E8 source code in two different Zip forms:
e8-trunk.zip (~30 kB): The tip-of-trunk contents of this repository in Zip form. Contains only true "source" files, nothing generated, so it requires Perl and a "
make" tool to generate the bits missing relative to
e8-dist.zip. (Which is why it's smaller!)
The E8 project is hosted in a Fossil repository, so another way to get E8 is to clone that repository:
$ apt install fossil $ mkdir -p ~/museum ~/src/e8/trunk $ fossil clone https://tangentsoft.com/e8 ~/museum/e8.fossil $ cd ~/src/e8/trunk $ fossil open ~/museum/e8.fossil
Having done this, you now have a complete copy of the E8 project, including all historical versions, its wiki, its forum, its ticket tracker contents, etc. Say
fossil up in the directory you "opened" the repository into to update your local clone. See the Fossil Quick Start Guide for more info.