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About Me and My Work


Being based in PHP, my favourite editors are those that are simple text editors with an FTP clients. My current personal favourite is Coda 2 although Sublime Text is an excellent option and EditPad Pro (with FileZilla) will always have a place in my heart.

For MySQL, nothing is quite as easy as Sequel Pro for playing with databases. I have no idea how anyone survives on MySQL Workbench.

A newcomer to the scene, GitKraken is the best Git client I have found and a perfect companion to Git's command line tools. It also has a nice Cheat Sheet to get to grips with it.

Despite starting out with Lighttpd, I have ended up learning Apache to stay with much of the rest of the world.

Ubuntu is an excellent introduction to Linux however its easy to grow weary of the short update cycle and now I am a Debian user.

I have also been using a combination of VirtualBox and Vagrant to develop websites in an environment identical to the actual servers.

I was introduced to Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo at a young age and it remains my favourite. Obviously Photoshop is a frequent go-to on macs these days.

Statuscake offers excellent monitoring to ensure I am alerted to any downtime and Backblaze is one of the best ways of backing up files to cloud storage and even a whole computer.

Programming Languages

I initially started out with Classic ASP a long time ago before being introduced to PHP and never looking back. VBScript remains a reliable favourite for some more advanced Windows tasks so is never too far away.

I am a big fan of SCSS for managing my CSS, automatically compiling it with PHP wherever possible. I did fall in with the jQuery but have recently been working in vanilla JavaScript to be a bit closer to what the code actually does.

Being a regular Linux user, I am no stranger to Bash scripting to run backups and keep combinations of configurations in check, particularly useful when combined with Git and Ansible.

Hosting and Email

Initially I got involved with Rackspace Cloud however as the complexity and cost of their services increased, I moved to DigitalOcean for a better deal having learned all I needed to.

I typically go with Namecheap for domains for their excellent services and pricing. DigitalOceans DNS hosting is absolutely painless too but sometimes a few different features come in handy from

Whilst I have hosted email servers before, Google Apps, Zoho, and Microsoft Office 365 do a much better job of it than I could on my own.

Password Manager

Whilst I have used LastPass and bitwarden in my work, I am personally a bigger fan of pass. pass-winmenu and pass-extension-tail make it a breeze and owning my own data feels much more comfortable.

Other Favourite Programs

Typically I prefer to use Firefox as my browser most of the time as it clears its cache very effectively. Its built in developer tools have replaced most extensions I used. Other extensions I use are:

Also in about:config, setting browser.tabs.closeWindowWithLastTab to false is a lifesaver.

When I'm using Firefox on Linux, I sometimes have to remember to change doubleClickSelectsAll in about:config too.

Chrome is good for a few things, namely:

Theres also an honourable mention for Gapplin for previewing SVGs, SoundBunny for your volume levels, and AppCleaner for thoroughly uninstalling things.

Stuff to try out

I'm currently looking at using Visual Studio Code with PHP from WAMP to help the autocompletion and Crane for the rest of the magic.

This article has lots of details about customising Visual Studio Code.

Also for visual diff on windows, I'm looking at meld. Mac has a glorious opendiff in XCode