In the beginning there was the bit, Turing, logic, the difference engine, ada lovelace, and a whole bunch of other important names and ideas...
Later on UNIX and C came on the scene. Life was good. Tech was still high and far out of the reach of the crass comercialism that grabs at it some 30 or so odd years later.
There was ed... I wasn't born. Eh, I wasn't born for any of this first wave stuff.
Then vi emerged. Full screen they said... what a waste. But my goodness, I can see a good chunk of my program all at once. I am understanding things differently...
Then emacs came along. It's strange and bizarre modifier key chords were an entirely different editing paradigm than the mode based editing of vi. But with its embedded interpreted emacs lisp language, emacs stood alone as a highly extensible piece of software.
Free software development put a darwinian twist onto the emacs vi affair, and left us with two prime specimens:
These lean machines have everything (multiple windows, tab completion, syntax highlighting) it would seem, but yet the different starting points have made them utterly different.
For example the concept of yanking something means to yank it from the kill ring in emacs, while it means to copy it from the open file in vim.
Such differences are myriad in nature and in danger.
If you ever his C-x C-s in vi to save something just hit your scroll lock or hit C-q to get your cursor back.
That is all I can say for now, but be warned someday the emacs vi unification will be more than just viper mode.