Everyone knows the pressure developers experience daily; you need to keep up with the latest tech, the best software, learn new stuff as soon as it hits the market or even before it hits the market.
The whole point is for any developer to succeed in his field they need to know the latest trend, the newest software every time.
However, it may lead to the use of premature technology according to Greg Bogdan, Software Engineer, Blogger, and a Tech Enthusiast. Taking a step further may lead to using tools that do not match the use case for what developers need or complicate issues as Greg rightly said.
Nonetheless, this article reveals some software or tools that are good and necessary for developers. Some of these tools are specific, as well as generic; they have been in existence for quite some time, and mature enough to use.
In addition, you get to enjoy community support, which is a huge plus on any software or tool.
Table of Contents
- Web Developer Toolkit
- Testing Libraries
- UI Frameworks
- Developer support
- Source control
- Editors & IDEs
- Continuous Integration
- Source Code Merge Tool
Web Developer Toolkit
We are starting by covering general tools, which you will need to use at some point in time, below are some essential tools for web developers.
User Interface Kits
If you are starting a new web project, UI Kit is necessary to speed up the development process. Bootstrap, for example, is one of the favorite UI kits; it also has predefined CSS, with a grid layout, elements, and of course custom buttons.
This is another on the UI Kit list. The Kendo UI Kit and the helper classes are very well aligned and can be used together.
Do not get too excited yet; the Kendo UI Kit is not free, nevertheless, if you are building a project where proper, robust HTML controls like Grids, Calendars, and Search fields are required, then Kendo is highly recommended for you.
This is yet another UI Kit, which you can use instead of Bootstrap. Although it is not as popular as Bootstrap, Foundation is still the second commonly used kit. It has a beautiful design and a grid structure. There are several tutorials on their website if you want to use the Foundation UI kit.
The first on his list is Mocha.js; Mocha.js operates on Node.js and the browser. Jasmine is a BDD testing framework which is widely adopted by the community.
Everyone knows that Single Page Applications (SPAs) are very common; nonetheless, Angular.js is highly recommended for Web User Interface Frameworks.
Furthermore, if you are looking an excellent tool to test how the website or webpage you built complies with the standards, then it is advisable to use W3C website validator; it is an excellent tool for examining how the webpage and website you are building complies with the standard.
However, you can use color picker for cases that need you to find a specific color on a website. Moreover, there is a Google Chrome extension for picking colors, and an eye dropper.
Greg stated that he likes this method when developers select a region on the website to choose a pick from, it creates a picture of the area and making the areas that have the same color, which makes it easier for developers to pick what they need.
What do you think about the specific software? However, you still have the opportunity to pick anyone from the lot. Below are some of the particular tools developers need to stay at the top.
As a developer, you need to understand the meaning of source control system, and source control management. Git, TFS, svn, or perforce are source control systems; so, if you have a larger team, and into feature branching, it is necessary to get git. Nevertheless, if you have a .NET ecosystem, the right option is TFS.
Nonetheless, if you have a private repo for free and you need some people t to collaborate with you on the project, then go for BitBucket because it provides free private reports for up to five developers
Editors & IDEs
It is safe or highly recommended for developers to learn at least one Integrated Development Environment (IDE) and one editor.
It is necessary to get an editor that has a lot of cool features, and which also support plugins. Which other editor have these characteristics if not Sublime?
According to Greg, Sublime is one of the used editors, and the reason is that it is blazingly fast for developers.
Irrespective of the number of files you open, sublime enables you to navigate between these files instantaneously. Moreover, source code highlighting works well.
Atom is an alternative to Sublime if you are not digging the sublime platform, but still want its cool features; Atom is a fresh choice too. It is as fast as Sublime, but Atom is a fully open source. Furthermore, Atom is newer than Sublime, and it is built on GitHub’s Electron cross-platform engine.
While you have to pay a license fee when using Sublime, Atom has its own packaging system too, but the available packages are high. Atom editor became famous because of GitHub’s marketing campaigns.
Both Sublime and Atom have the same functions, choosing one over the other will be based on personal taste and not for the best functionalities because they are alike.
Integrated Development Environments (IDEs)
Getting or learning an IDE is a good idea, though it depends on the technology you use. However, if you are a Java developer then it is mandatory to use IntelliJ or Eclipse; these IDEs enable you to debug and profile your application efficiently.
In addition, it helps you to install everything with one shot. Unlike Atom and Sublime editors, you do not also have to install them separately.
If you are looking for a free IDE, then go for Eclipse; it is free and developed by the community. The old version of Eclipse was buggy and slow, but after the several improvements, the Eclipse is more modern and now the foundation for several other IDEs.
However, IntelliJ is more modern and has more features than Eclipse, but it comes with a price tag. You will need to pay around 170EUR for a standard home license and 500EUR for a pro developer license.
Furthermore, if you are a .NET developer, consider using Visual Studio. The professional developer license is a bit expensive, but you get to enjoy free Community Edition for non-commercial use. In addition, if you are using .NET but not windows, MonoDevelop is an excellent option for you.
Jenkins is the leading open source Continuous Integration engine; CI is all about compiling, deploying and delivering software as often as possible, so the report from customers comes as early as possible, which enables the development team to implement change requests.
Furthermore, continuous delivery signifies that your source control system is tied up to your Jenkins build server. Whenever developers make some changes, the Jenkins systems watch and start a new build process, it compiles and runs the unit and the integration test although only if they are in the developer’s project.
The continuous integration will also create new artifacts, in essence, executable process outputs. If it has a deployment job configure, it will deploy the new release. It saves time and money for a development team by making the entire workflow automatic and without human interaction.
Source Code Merge Tool
If you are working within a team as a software developer, then the time will come when two or three of you might modify the same code file at the same time, which could cause conflicts. Small conflicts can be resolved without a merge tool, but if there are many conflicts within the same file, then you will need a good tool. One of the tools you could use on OSX is DiffMerge. This tool offers a nice overview of changes in the files, and also has a nice pattern matching feature for comparing the files.Added Greg Bogdan, Software Engineer, and a Tech Enthusiast.
In conclusion, every piece of software listed here are mature enough for use, but if you have other developer’s tools that are not listed here, you need to research the software before using them, to avoid using tools, which do not have a lot of community support.