I used to be a vi guy who finally made the move to graphical editors. I looked for the simplest, lightest possible solutions, using ConTEXT for quite a while.
Some years ago I was forced into using Eclipse for reasons I can’t quite recall; probably Java development. I didn’t like it - the forced Project concept, the bloat, the general slowness.
Eventually I got comfortable with it, got PyDev installed, and made it my primary development environment. These days most of my development lives in Eclipse.
With the 1.5 release PyDev included quite a few previously pay-only features in the free / open source version. Since then I’ve found I’ve become even more productive in the environment, and now actually enjoy it.
In particular, the code analysis is very useful. I love the fact that it points out unused imports and variables as well as syntax errors. Going through old code I was surprised at how many spurious imports I had, as well as a few actual errors in code that had been in production for several years in rarely exercised branches.
If you’re doing python development I recommend you take a look at Eclipse+PyDev. I was surprised at the level of increased productivity it brought me.