I am new to blender here. I have a mesh object that is globally transformed (rotate, scale, translate). I want to manipulate the object in a mode such that I can see it in its default form (0 rotation, 0 translation, and 1 scale). I wonder if I can view an object in its default form in edit mode while keeping the global transformation?
The only way that comes to mind is to not transform the object directly, but through another object (eg: an empty), using a "copy transform" constraint.
Disabling/enabling the constraint shows the object in its initial state (disabled), or in the transformed state (enabled)
Can you include a screenshot of what you mean? I am thinking you want to tab into edit mode and have the object back to the origin and editable, but then back to object mode and it be the size/rotation/location you left it in. If this is the case, then I would suggest you try using a single bone armature as a parent (Automatic Weights) while the object is still at 0/0/0 and in original scale. Then you can make actions on the bone in Pose mode and the object will follow and scale to the bone, but once you select the object and tab to edit mode it will be back at the default pose and position/scale.
I added another answer before, and another user too (a good one) but now I think there's another way, perhaps better, depending on your workflow, anyway is always better to know more different ways. So far, using other answers, you are driving the transform through an object which is very different from yours and thus you can't use some useful tool like snapping, while transforming, at its best, I feel.
Well, you could use the "duplicate linked" command, instead, to create a copy of the original object (maybe keep it in another, unused, layer). The linked copy shares the same mesh, but it is an independent object, so it can be transformed an used in any way. (To better separate originals and linked copies you could also use a "linked scene", perhaps, but I'll follow the layers example here, to keep it simpler).
If you need to view the original object, without transforms or modifiers, you simply switch to the "originals" layer, and you base object is there, unaltered.
More, if you wish to alter its mesh (not the object, for that you'll use the linked one), like extruding it, subdividing, etc, you can do that in the "base" object - IN EDIT MODE - and the result will be applied to your linked copy too...
eg: extruding base object0s mesh on Z
..exiting edit mode, the linked object's mesh gets modified too...
As said, in this way you can transform the linked object using also useful tools like snapping, and sometimes this can be really useful.
I think you can pick whatever method works best in any situation...