xaizek / libvle (License: GPLv3+) (since 2019-04-21)
Library for building Vim-like applications.
File Mode Size
compat/ 040000
engine/ 040000
utils/ 040000
KeyDispatcher.cpp 100644 1,526B
KeyDispatcher.hpp 100644 1,800B
Mode.cpp 100644 2,317B
Mode.hpp 100644 3,181B
Modes.cpp 100644 3,312B
Modes.hpp 100644 1,989B
README.md 100644 2,864B
keys.cpp 100644 1,423B
keys.hpp 100644 1,353B


libvle, 2019

This file last updated on 21 April, 2019

Brief Description

This is a C++11 library that provides basic classes for implementing Vim-like behaviour. Although the interface is in C++, core of the implementation is in C.

VLE stands for Vim-Like Engine.


The obvious purpose is to avoid reimplementing Vim-like functionality over and over again and instead do it once in a reusable manner.

Implementation state

It was extracted out of vifm for a couple of projects, has minimally necessary functionality and can change quite a bit in the future. The implementations might diverge as there is currently no synchronization process in place.

Throw-in library state

There is no build system and nothing is getting built for the client. To use it clone the repository (possibly as a submodule) and handle the building with the build system that's used by the main project. Compile C++ files with C++11 enabled.


  • C++11 capable compiler



The API consists of classes in the vle namespace.

What's available

As noted above, API is extended to accomodate use cases and currently includes only:

  • Modes -- handles initialization, deinitialization and switching modes
  • Mode -- contains mode configuration
  • Shortcut -- shortcuts with optional support of count
  • KeyDispatcher -- input processor

How to use

  1. Create Mode objects and populate them with Shortcut objects.
  2. Put Mode objects into Modes.
  3. Feed input to KeyDispatcher, which will trigger shortcut handlers.


Very minimal application:

#include <cstdlib>

#include <iostream>
#include <string>

#include "vle/KeyDispatcher.hpp"
#include "vle/Mode.hpp"
#include "vle/Modes.hpp"

    vle::Mode normalMode("normal");
    normalMode.addShortcut({ L"gg", [&]() {
        std::wcout << L"go to the top\n";
    }, "go to the top" });
    normalMode.addShortcut({ L"j", [&](int i) {
        std::wcout << L"go down " << (i == -1 ? 1 : i) << L" item(s)\n";
    }, "go down" });

    std::vector<vle::Mode> allModes;

    vle::Modes modes;

    vle::KeyDispatcher dispatcher;

    for (std::wstring ws; std::wcout << L"  User input: ",
                          std::getline(std::wcin, ws); ) {
        for (wchar_t wc : ws) {
            std::wcout << L"  > Sending in: " << wc << L'\n';
            std::wcout << L"  > Buffered: " << dispatcher.getPendingInput()
                       << L'\n';
        std::wcout << L"\n";

    return EXIT_SUCCESS;

Before first commit, do not forget to setup your git environment:
git config --global user.name "your_name_here"
git config --global user.email "your@email_here"

Clone this repository using HTTP(S):
git clone https://code.reversed.top/user/xaizek/libvle

Clone this repository using ssh (do not forget to upload a key first):
git clone ssh://rocketgit@code.reversed.top/user/xaizek/libvle

You are allowed to anonymously push to this repository.
This means that your pushed commits will automatically be transformed into a pull request:
... clone the repository ...
... make some changes and some commits ...
git push origin master