It’s default functionality is already much more pleasant than that of it’s Windows equivalence, as it supports syntax highlighting. In addition, there are three basic features that I like very much, but which are not activated from the start: Line numbers, highlighting of the current line and colour schemes.
All three can be switched on by going to “Edit>Preferences”. I have chosen a dark colour scheme (called “Oblivion”, because it spares the eyes when writing for a long time.
To receive even more, just install gedit-plugins from the terminal:
sudo apt-get install gedit-plugins
Now you will find a new tab under “Preferences”. There you can add and remove plug-in functions, such as a color picker, a file browser, case changing or an embedded terminal. The terminal will appear in the bottom pane. Thus you can open and edit files via bash without switching the window.