Web Development Tools of the Trade

When developing sites, coding in general or even support in a community there are quite a few tools that make the job a lot easier on a person. This is a list of tools that I use along with many other developers out there and are invaluable…

Note: Some of these tools can be resource intensive.
I run most of these tools, even all at once, but it is on a 4 Core workstation with 6 Gigs of Ram.
  • Local Host
    You simply can’t develop efficiently without one and you don’t want to be updating some clients site with out testing your code first. That’s where a local host comes in and is extremely faster than using a test site on the web somewhere because there is no uploading or transferring of files.

    • I prefer XAMPP
    • MAMPP for Mac
    • There are many other Local Host options out there, try a few and see what works best for you.
  • Browsers FireFox, IE6 – 8, Safari, Opera, Chrome
    • FireFox, If you don’t all ready have it I should reach out and slap you 🙂
    • IE Tester
    • Opera
    • Safari
    • Chrome
    • Generally speaking, if you develop in FireFox the others will usually be fine with the exception of less than IE8. You still have to browser check to be sure and do your minor tweaks!
      This is assuming your code validates.
  • Browser tools
  • Integrated Development Environment (IDE)
    • NetBeans is currently my IDE of choice.
    • Aptana Aptana Studio 1.5 had a PHP plugin. I will dig that up as well..
    • Eclipse Is just about the root of about 75% of all IDE’s out there as most of them are built off of it..
  • Quick Text Editor
    • NotePad++ My all time favorite quick code editor. Lite Weight and Free!
    • WinMerge is actually a diff tool but also has code highlighting. Used for finding differences between files and directories.
  • Graphics Editor
    • Photoshop You will need to spend some coin on this but nothing compares.
    • Gimp The GNU Image Manipulation Program.
    • Paint.NET – Free Software for Digital Photo Editing
  • Video Recorder for Video Tuts
    • JingPro My favorite and very reasonable price and the only one I could find with true quality..
  • GIT
    • Repo’s
      • Assembla I have a paid package for the private use feature for customer projects.
      • GitHub
  • SVN
    • Repo’s
  • Time Recording for keeping record of times on projects.
    I currently use HourGuard from NCH Software, it seems reliable and has a reasonable price tag (Free) and exports times to their invoicing software. I have tried many others, some that don’t even keep correct time and some that do but have less features or some other issue.
  • Invoicing Same here, I currently use Express Invoice from NCH Software, it seems reliable and has a reasonable price tag (Free – Pro version)
  • Project Management
    • Assembla, I can’t find any other site with more relevant tools for web development projects.
      I give Assembla a 5 star rating.

There are a ton of web based tools for everything from photo manipulation to code editing to invoicing. I don’t use them for one simple reason, you need web access to work with them. Obviously you need web access for this line of business but having the tools on your machine will always be faster and if you have internet down time, you can still work..

On the same note, there are thousands of tools out there for web development, this I know. This is simply the list of the tools I use and the tools that I know do the job.

With that , have fun and happy coding 🙂