Not everything is a nail, so I’m familiar with more tools than just hammers. Often a hand-cut HTML site, backed by PHP and a custom MySQL database, is the best solution but modern CMS systems like Drupal and WordPress combined with frameworks like jQuery and Twitter’s Bootstrap can really produce amazing results in remarkable timeframes with consequentially impressive cost benefits.
I’ve developed a fantastic tool-set over the years which allows me to do a huge amount with very little.
- Sublime Text. Wonderful code editor. Spend most of my day here.
- A great hosting provider. Private servers allows me ssh and root access to do pretty much anything I need to.
- XAMPP. An Apache, MyQSL and PHP stack running on my dev machines allowing me to run local copies of web sites.
- Dropbox. Fantastic for syncing everything across all my machines.
- CrashPlan. Cloud based backup so I can be sure your site isn’t going to disappear on me.
- Git. Version control is pretty much vital. I need to know I can revert any changes so I can experiment freely.
- Illustrator and Photoshop. The usual suspects for web design.
- Sass (Compass) and LESS (SimpLESS) for intelligently writing my CSS style sheets.
- Windows Power Shell, Take Command and Cygwin for command line wizardry. Scripts mean I can automate a lot of work.
- WordPress. Whenever clients need content management, WP is my first port of call.
- Various 3rd party plug-ins and libraries. I don’t have the time and you don’t have the money to reinvent the wheel.
- A simple text based calendar and to do list with time tracking and estimation. Captures everything with no friction and maximum flexibility.
- A MarkDown based ‘memex’ type system for capturing reference and design inspiration material.