Using Nano?

Tony Baechler tony at
Wed Jun 24 05:04:00 EDT 2015

On 6/24/2015 12:30 AM, Brandon Keith Biggs wrote:
> Hello,
> Wow, the edit cursor does not move along with the review cursor... That's
> horrible.

No, it's not quite as bad as that.  Yes, Speakup doesn't always follow the
real cursor, but it can be worked around.  Press Enter on the numeric keypad
to reset the Speakup cursor to the real cursor.  Press the 8 on the numeric
keypad to read the current line, 5 to read the current word and 2 for the
current character.  7 and 9 move to the prior and next line, 4 and 6 move by
word and 1 and 3 move by character.  There is a Speakup guide which is a
tutorial of sorts.  I think it's on but I'm not positive.
 You can press keypad plus to read everything on the screen and keypad Enter
to shut up speech and move the Speakup cursor back to the real cursor.
There is also a laptop layout.  You can press Speakup-F1 for help.  The
Speakup key is 0 on the numeric keypad or the caps lock.

> How does one navigate? Is nano not the editor you use?

I actually now use NE, but I used Nano for a long time.  You navigate with
the arrow keys.  You move the Speakup cursor with the commands described above.

> I'm used to having one hand on the arrow keys and the other on the ctrl and
> meta keys. But it seems as if I can't navigate by word at all. Ctrl+up and
> down take me to the top and bottom of the document, ctrl+mod+left and right
> (ctrl+home and ctrl+end) take me to the start and end of the line, but
> ctrl+left and right don't do anything. A guide I read said that ctrl+space
> and meta+space would move me by word, but that didn't work for me.

No, Ctrl-Left and Ctrl-Right usually don't do anything in Linux.  You can
press Ctrl-G within Nano for help.

> What text editor do you guys normally use for config files, writing python
> scripts and whatnot?

There are many choices.  It's not unlike the discussion of which distro to
use.  Several which come to mind are emacs, vi, ed, ne, and joe.  It's
mostly a matter of preference.

> If I don't wish to type the file, is there a way to open the file without
> typing the name? Is there a way to copy and paste lines in the terminal?

Yes to both.  There are several good file managers.  Ranger comes to mind
and it's pretty good.  Nano has tab completion.  That means you can enter
part of a file and press Tab to fill in the rest of the name.  If it beeps
or nothing happens, either there is no file with that prefix or there are
multiple matches.  Pressing Tab a second time will either do nothing if no
files match or pop up a list.  This works at the command line and is very
useful.  For example, to edit a file called myfile, you would type:

nano my (Tab)

Assuming myfile is the only file which starts with "my," "file" would be
inserted automatically.  The Speakup guide goes into copying and pasting text.

> Thanks,
> Brandon Keith Biggs <>
> On 6/24/2015 1:12 AM, Gregory Nowak wrote:
>> On Tue, Jun 23, 2015 at 10:52:26PM +0200, Brandon Keith Biggs wrote:
>>> Hello,
>>> Is there a way to root the editing cursor to the review cursor when
>>> one is in Nano?
>> Not as far as I know.
>>> Is there also a way to open up a text editor while one is on the
>>> commandline?
>> Yes, by typing the editor's name and pressing enter. To bring up nano,
>>> type nano and press enter.
>>> How does one normally edit scripts?
>> Probably the easiest way is to type the script name after the editor
>> name, and pressing enter. To edit a script called myscript in nano, on
>> the command-line you'd type:
>> nano myscript
>> and press enter.
>>> thank you,
>> You're welcome.
>> Greg
>>> -- 
>>> Brandon Keith Biggs <>
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Speakup mailing list
>>> Speakup at
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Have a good day,
Tony Baechler
tony at

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