A text editor is a program that you run to allow you to create and edit text files by typing in characters from a keyboard.   An editor is very simple-minded version of a word processor like Microsoft Word; but it doesn't allow you to make things bold or italicized and stuff like that. (Who cares what color your program is?) You'll use a text editor to enter your code into source files that can be then compiled later by a  compiler.  

Although I very much admire (and use) the tremendous built in help features of emacs, I still recommend that when you are first starting out you use a web tutorial or get a good book (I used O'Reilly press's Learning GNU Emacs by Cameron, Rosenblatt, and Raymond).  Hard core old timers will tell you to skip the book or web tutorial and learn emacs from within emacs.  (They'll also tell you that real programmers don't use high level languages and never bother with documentation.)  There is also a Google Group taking over from the older Usenet newsgroup devoted to emacs

This page last changed 10 Sept 2018 by Dr. M.S. Jaffe