well, i have been evaluating some other code editors. free ones, of course. and i really like aptana studio 3. i believe the debugger tools are better than komodoedit. check it out. http://www.aptana.com
i have also been looking very closely at the omega theme and the subtheming aspect of the package. i believe that this is a good direction to head into if you want to learn how to manipulate all the different elements of a theme.