QuiEdit Gives You a Distraction-Free Writing Experience in Ubuntu

For a writer, being able to concentrate while doing work is one of the most important things. However, when it comes to writing on a computer, there are usually a lot of distractions such as notifications, reminders, warnings/errors and more – that adversely affect one’s productivity.

If you are looking for a solution to the aforementioned problem, you’ll be glad to know that certain applications exist that offer a distraction-free writing experience with one of them being QuiEdit which we’ll be discussing in this article.

Please note that all the instructions and commands mentioned in this article have been tested on Ubuntu 16.04.

As the name suggests, QuiEdit aims to be your go-to application when you want to write in a quiet, distraction-free environment. It’s a full-screen text editor focused on writing in Markdown. The application supports features such as theming, Markdown syntax highlighting, and spell checking.

Execute the following commands to download and install the QuiEdit application:

sudo sh -c 'echo "deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/smathot/cogscinl/ubuntu trusty main" >> /etc/apt/sources.list'
sudo apt-key adv --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys CEE7C815
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install quiedit

On Ubuntu 16.04 I faced a problem while installing QuiEdit. The last command mentioned above resulted in the following error: “Depends: python-support (>= 0.90.0) but it is not installable.

If you also get the same error, you can easily fix it by downloading and installing the “python-support” package. For example, the following commands did the trick for me:

wget http://launchpadlibrarian.net/109052632/python-support_1.0.15_all.deb
sudo dpkg -i python-support_1.0.15_all.deb

Once you’re done with the download and installation part, you can launch QuiEdit by simply running the following command:


Here’s the QuiEdit’s UI when it’s just launched.


To clarify, the above screenshot isn’t merely from the application, but it represents what the complete desktop screen looked like at that moment. This means QuiEdit offers distraction-free experience by directly opening up in full-screen mode. Of course, you can switch to any other application on your system by pressing “Alt + Tab.”

Sticking to its distraction-free theme, the editor UI doesn’t even contain a menu or buttons, so you can just write without getting distracted.


What’s worth mentioning here is that any spelling mistakes (or words not in the dictionary) spotted by the editor are automatically highlighted with a red underline. Plus, QuiEdit also offers word suggestions (at the bottom of the screen) while you’re correcting a spelling mistake.

Next up, for any help related to the editor, including the list of files and formatting operations that are permissible and how to carry them, just press the “Ctrl + H” keys.


Please note that the help documentation shown above doesn’t explain how you can exit the QuiEdit application. However, after a few hits and misses, I found out that pressing “Ctrl + Q” does the trick here.

Moving on, whenever you save text written in QuiEdit, it’s saved in a .html file.


If the text contains Markdown tags, you can press “Ctrl + Shift + E” to open available export options and select the “Parse Markdown and export to HTML” option.


If you want to convert your Markdown file into some other format like PDF, ODT, or DOCX, the author of the editor app recommends using the Academic Markdown tool.

Note: new to Markdown? Our Markdown Cheatsheet should be of great help.

At best, QuiEdit is a basic text editor. It doesn’t offer many features (doesn’t seem to be actively developed anymore either), but certainly, delivers what it promises – a distraction-free writing experience. If that suits you, you should definitely give this application a try.