David’s Development Tools – 2014 Edition

toolboxWe all have many different tools that we use in our daily software development tasks. They can even change over time as we find better tools. I develop on a Mac and mainly do Drupal development. Here’s a general inventory of the tools I’m currently using. Perhaps you’ll find something useful to you?

phpstorm_iconIDE – PhpStorm


I can’t imagine writing code without it. The auto-completion of an IDE is nice, but I think some of the best features of PhpStorm are…

  1. Project navigation – Being able to click on a function and go to the file where it’s defined is a real time-saver.

  2. Find usages – Great to see if and where code is used.

  3. Zero-configuration debugging with xdebug – Because it can be tedious to use print statements. Another big time-saver.

mamp_pro_iconDevelopment Stack – MAMP Pro


I’ve used this since its first version. Version 3 was recently released and it’s great for developers that don’t want to micromanage all the different servers, virtual hosts, and PHP versions on their local machine. I had tried the vagrant + VM route for about a year, but came back to MAMP’s ease of use and simplicity. I’m a believer.

coda2_iconText Editor – Coda 2


When I need some quick text editing or editing over sftp, I fire up this app. I’m not completely attached to this tool. It has it’s pros and cons, but I had really liked Coda 1 and will keep using Coda 2 until a better lightweight and simple text editor comes along.

sequel_pro_iconDatabase Management – Sequel Pro


Since I mainly work with Drupal, this MySQL-only (for now) db management tool fits the bill nicely. Mac-native and a tabbed ui for connecting to multiple databases.

chrome_iconWeb Browser – Chrome


I used to be a Firefox guy, but when FF 4.0 was released it felt extremely bloated. So I switched to Chrome, which was lighting fast at the time. The developer tools are fantastic and felt better than Firebug (personal preference). Happy to keep using this until something better comes out.

skitch_iconScreenshots – Skitch for Mac 1.0


Great tool for taking quick screenshots of whole windows or just a small section of your screen. Adding annotations and saving those images is a snap. When Evernote bought Skitch, the next version they released was a fiasco and I had to downgrade. I’ll have to re-evaluate newer versions to see if the early Skitch magic was put back into the app.

codebox_iconCode Snippets – CodeBox


More than just saving code snippets, I save commands and other notes that I can quickly find and paste. It’s a simple app and stays out of the way in the menubar.

1password_iconPassword Manager – 1Password


If you’re a developer, you should probably be using a password manager. 1Password is a great Mac-native app and is available for other platforms.

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