Tabs vs Spaces Personal Preferences

I’ve always preferred tabs. While binge-watching Silicon Valley, I was totally on Richard’s side … at first.

Then I thought, “But wait, if I used spaces, I might not have that problem of my code getting all ugly and confusing when I switch editors (because I work on three different machines). Just as I finished that thought–while Richard and Winnie were breaking up over it–Winnie says, “because it could look different on other people’s computers.”

So, Facebook … I’m totally smart enough to work there. Call me.

Oh my gosh … of course, someone posted just that scene on YouTube.


I do hope Hubert Applebaum‘s profile pic is actually him:


Anyway, I finally took a look at the Preferences in my various apps and learned a couple things. If, like me, this is fairly new to you, here’s how to changes the relevant prefs in your editor(s).


I was giddy with glee that I also found the settings for Soft Wrap in Atom and Word Wrap in Sublime Text.


Another pleasant surprise was discovering SublimeText’s “use tab stops” setting. It’s been a source of frustration to press tab to insert tabs only to have backspace move one space at a time.

Dreamweaver 2015‘s prefs confused me, however.


Indent and Tab Size appear to be two different things. Are they different in those other editors? If so, can I control them there as well? Because, dude, that would ruin all this new joy if the tabs didn’t match up with wherever the cursor/indenting landed whenever I press Enter/Return. Why would you ever want them to be different?

For the curious, Dreamweaver 2017 has some additional settings:


Speaking of differences between Adobe CC 2015 and 2017 … BEWARE! Prepare yourself by backing up all your prefs and such.

I use 2017 at work. Because when IT installed the updates (this is the strictest organization I’ve ever worked with when it comes to how locked down the computers are), it didn’t just update the apps, it “upgraded” them from 2015 to the all new 2017 … which completely wiped out all my custom settings and preferences in Photoshop. I was not happy. I’m now resetting all my shortcuts, workspaces, etc. as I need them. Dreamweaver remembered all of my custom shizzle but, for the first time in fifteen years, Dreamweaver got some significant changes and those changes make using it a drag so I definitely won’t be updating/upgrading at home.

I think it’s worth mentioning that if Atom would get it’s freezing & crashing under control, I’d never use another editor and none of this would even matter.

On another related note, Google just announced you can no longer email JavaScript files as attachments and suggest we use Google Drive or DropBox. So, these tab/spaces preference settings I’ve just learned may be moot. I may just start working on my laptop even when home or on lunch at work (where we are forbidden to access Google Drive or DropBox).

I find this decision quite irritating. Because of every idiot who ever invited a virus or bit of malware onto their computer or their employer’s network, I have to suffer. This isn’t the first time some browser people have made decisions for me that cause me pain and suffering the likes of which refugees never have to endure.

Chrome has always automatically updated Flash which caused problems at two separate employers. Meanwhile, Firefox makes you approve every flash-based thing … except, of course, any advertising. Ads get through just fine.

I’d love if I could wirelessly connect my laptop to my Mac and work laptop. I’m fairly sure I can do the (Linux) laptop and Mac but, of course, there’s no way for me to get past whatever security nightmare is on my work computer.

Another thing I hate about Adobe CC 2017 apps is a Articulame Stupidline feature they’ve adopted. When I launch an app, I click the icon/shortcut and then go back to whatever app I was using while I wait for the new app to finish launching. Storyline has always refused to stay in the background, however, jumping in front of whatever you’re using, forcing you to stop and send it to the background a time or two. This is in addition to the fact that you never know which monitor it will open on so it’s not like you can prepare. Regardless of the monitor you had it in last time you used it, it’s either random or decides to open where you don’t want it just to be a dick. Oh, and let’s not forget that after you move it, you then have to click the minimize/maximize button (it won’t minimize or maximize the window, it just changes the button to a maximize button), maximize it (which doesn’t maximize it but puts it in full-screen mode), minimize it (which doesn’t minimize it but puts the window back the way it already was, floating above the desktop), and maximize it (this time it actually means maximize) before you can use it. Have I ever mentioned what a piece of junk Storyline is?

Historically, Adobe products stay patiently and obediently in the background while launching. Now, they’re even more persistently obnoxious than Storyline. After a click or two, Storyline stays in the background. Thus far, Photoshop, Illustrator, and Dreamweaver and like self-aware … cats! They’re like cats pacing across the keyboard and in front of the monitor no matter how many times you (gently and lovingly, at first) set them aside.


2 thoughts on “Tabs vs Spaces Personal Preferences

  1. im still not sure what your current preference is now that youve had this revelation. either way, the only way you could get me to use tab is:

    * you couldnt

    * unless maybe it was in an ide or editor that reliably added 4 actual spaces (ascii/unicode 32) and not ascii/unicode 9.

    at least we dont have to break up over it. (let soft wrap take care of that.)


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