My work environment

- 3 mins

Doomed to failure. Context switching. Three different collections of cookies. Sofas, cafes, and external monitors. Communication as a derivative of business needs. And what the heck has cutlery got in common with laziness?

MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015)

As I develop mostly iOS and macOS apps, this is an obvious choice. Processor 2,5 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD is enough for me for the software development process. I don’t use external monitors as I like to change the places where I work (desk, sofa, client’s office, cafe, co-working office etc.). I also worked with a 13.3-inch MacBook Pro a few years ago and while coding on such small display was possible, the 15-inch version is much much better.

Xcode

I can write a lot of bad things about this IDE. Crashes, failing code completion, stupid errors, and even the need to reinstall. Unfortunately, I am doomed to using it. Why? Because it is an industry standard for iOS and MacOS app development. Maybe I should give AppCode a chance someday, but I’m not sure if it will be any better.

Sublime Text

Simple, yet powerful text editor. I open this every time there is no necessity to run Xcode. I use Sublime mostly when working on Shell scripts.

Oh-my-ZSH

It’s a great overlay on Terminal. I can’t even imagine working without this framework.

VMWare Fusion

I’m using virtual machines for testing applications on different versions of OSX. I’m also using VMWare to test beta versions and even fresh releases of OSX before installing them on my Mac.

Fork

I’m using Git on Terminal. I don’t need GUI Git client more than twice a week; I need something really simple, fast, and lightweight. Fork is far from excellent, but I’m too lazy to search for anything better for MacOS. If you are using any good, lightweight GUI Git clients please let me know :-)

Safari, Chrome, Firefox

This might sound a little strange, but I always have a problem with context switching. That’s why I’m using three different browsers. It means three different sets of bookmarks, browsing history, and cookies. Safari is for work, Firefox for writing blog posts, and Google Chrome for private stuff.

Calmly Writer

This is the best text editor for writing blog posts I’ve ever found. Simple, readable, and distraction-free. Dark mode is awesome. I tried Google Docs, Pages, TextEdit, and even writing blog posts in SublimeText. Calmly Writer is the best. I set this editor as my start page on Firefox.

Grammarly

As I’m not a native English speaker, I need to use some form of auto-correction. When using Grammarly, however, you should be aware of privacy and security issues. As everything you wrote is sent to their servers, I recommend using Grammarly only as a plugin on one dedicated browser (texts are stored only for 14 days), and preferably only for texts that could be public anyway. Take a look at this little tip.

Hemingway Editor

The text analyser that I’m using to make my blog posts more readable. It’s helpful, but like Grammarly, it won’t replace a native English human proofreader.

Slack, Teams, Skype, Hangouts

I believe that a client’s business needs should define the communication tools. I’m a big fan of Slack. It’s fast, powerful, and intuitive. On the other hand, I understand it is not the silver bullet, that’s why I leave the communicator choice decision entirely to the client.

Trello

A well-known task management tool. For commercial projects, JIRA is king but for my own stuff, Trello is more than enough. I’m using Trello for my own projects, blog, as a shopping list, every-day to-do list, and even holiday planning.

Timeneye

A time-tracking tool. It’s free unless you want to use it as a team. This solution helps me to measure my programming time, blogging, learning, and private things like workouts. Time is my most valuable asset, so I like to know how much of it I devote to particular activities.

Aleksander Popko

Aleksander Popko

iOS & macOS Software Engineer

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