LyX is a ‘document processor’. Not quite a text editor, and not quite a word processor, it puts a more friendly face on LaTeX.
Looks like it really works how Microsoft Word should work when used properly, setting everything strictly by style, never altering formatting manually. I really liked Word when it encouraged working like that. Now, it pushes you away from that style, and makes it too easy to use things like the Format Painter tool to copy formatting around. As soon as the document becomes a few pages long, you’re faced with a huge job when you want to change something simple. Using styles, if you wanted to change all of your ‘quote’ sections, or all of your titles, you’d just change what that style meant, and everything would happen automatically.
Iâ€™m not quite sure where this might fit into the whole text editors and word processors debate, but LaTeX is probably becoming less important as less work is aimed at print publication. Weâ€™re probably a long way from print or LaTeX becoming obsolete yet, but I doubt many new writers will be learning LaTeX now.