When I started out programming I was using Windows XP and a software named "HTML Editor Phase" or something like it; and later the normal notepad.
That was about 12 years ago and the internet changed a lot in that time, so have I.
Now I am using linux for about 8 years and tried several options from bluefish, kate, gedit, nano to vim (and some others).
When you hear about VIM you always consider it to be geeky or nerdy, and it is in a way because it is different. But as the command line grows on you so does VIM.
VIM does run als gVIM on my system and the window management around helps with some features you dont know the shortcut of yet.
VIM and the plugin NERDtree are wonderful when editing files, auto completion is as easily intregrated as various color themes (as later I use github).
In the picture above you see four different files open, usually I just work with two or three, but sometimes it is awesome to be able to edit them at once and look at the changes in the browser. You even can one file in two or more windows, edit the head and bottom e.g.
And there are so many shortcuts you are able to use (but dont have to), e.g. edit multiple lines at once (great for commenting or HTML/HAML).
And I am just a beginner, and still have to explore registers and all the macro stuff that VIM offers.
As a good beginning you could watch some youtube videos, e.g.:
The above just scratches the surface but gives you a "short" and good start when coming from notepad, gedit, word etc.
After this you might want to print out one of the several cheat sheets on vim commands, and after that buy a book to go deeper, e.g.:
Practival Vim - Edit Text At The Speed Of Thought
On my server I still work with nano rather than vi or vim, and sometimes I just open a file with gedit, but recently I have created an rails app and VIM was my editor of choice, even without the rails plugin.
Try it and enjoy!