When comparing Org mode for Emacs vs Kate, the Slant community recommends Org mode for Emacs for most people. In the question“What are the best knowledge base systems for personal use?” Org mode for Emacs is ranked 5th while Kate is ranked 24th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Libre/open source
Pro Cross platform
Emacs runs on all platforms, Windows, Linux, OSX, even Android and IOS
Pro Can be as simple or as complex as you want
Org mode started out as a simple outlining/note taking app. Then each outline heading can optionally be a TODO list item. And if you desire, you can add SCHEDULE and DEADLINE dates. (Schedule being the date you'd like to start the item.) You can customize the TODO states to add things like DELEGATED, WAITING, BLOCKED, etc.
Pro Exports data to PDF, LaTeX, HMTL and other
You can even build presentation or blog from your data
Pro Supports tables with formules (quite powerful!)
Pro Plain text data storage
Pro Inline image displaying
Pro Free but copyrighted
Pro Fast interaction
Once muscle-memory sets in, can be much faster to use than a point & click program.
Pro Uses Emacs
Pro All apps
Pro Integrated terminal
Has a terminal that can sync to the location of your document, letting you compile or run your program quickly or run quick commands, all without leaving the editor.
Pro Syntax highlighting
Kate supports syntax highlighting for over 180 languages, from Assembler to Zsh.
Pro Edit over FTP, SSH, or other protocols
Kate uses KDE's input and output libraries to read and write files, allowing seamless integration with FTP, SMB, SFTP, and many other protocols.
Pro Fast and minimaistic
Kate is pretty fast and lightweight. This helps it with it's start up speed.
Pro Thriving plugin ecosystem
Lots of plugins allow Kate to expand or shrink based on your needs. It includes GDB integration, XML completion, and symbol viewing to speed up programming.
Pro By far one of the best and lightest text editors.
Notepads alternative (for the Windows users).
Pro Project mode
Kate allows you to make projects to simplify the organisation of your code. This brings in additional organization of an IDE without the overhead.
Pro Vi entry mode
Kate has a vi entry mode.
Con Complicated to get started
Con Obtuse documentation
The documentation assumes a level of understanding of basic Emacs usage that not all users may have.
Con Difficult to use as a database
For example, if you need to quickly populate client details on quotes, unfortunately its easier to find, copy & paste.
Con Not suitable for normal users
Not even a majority of software developers can be bothered to use Emacs (or VI, for that matter).
Con PDF export can be difficult
Latex assumes you're a (compliant) student, have to do a lot of research to get what you want out of it.
Con Uses Emacs (for those who prefer vi, menus, etc.)
Con Hard to install on Windows or OS X
Kate can be a little hard to install and configure, especially for beginners.
On Linux or BSD, it can be easily installed from your distribution's repositories.