Uses

Inspired by uses.tech, I have written up my current setup. I will try to keep this post updated as things change.

Hardware

The Bedrock

Computers

  • iPad Pro - This is my main machine, to be honest. I use it for everything, yes even coding.
  • Custom PC - This is my default desk experience when I am not working. I enjoy the new Windows 11.
  • MacBook Pro - I basically just use this for work, building the iOS/macOS builds of my apps, or Facetime.
  • Surface Pro 6 - I picked up the Surface a while back and it still runs great and is a quick portable way to bring a Windows machine with me. It’s great for low spec gaming too.

The Input Club

  • Blue Portico75 Keyboard - A 75% keyboard with a knob and a USB-C port.
  • Kensington VeriMark USB Fingerprint Key - This is finicky but when it works it’s pretty cool.
  • Kone XP - I wanted to try out a gaming mouse and this seemed like the perfect place to start. It’s light and has automatic profile switching between apps and games.
  • Logitech MX Ergo - I learned during quarantine that my hand starts to hurt after long periods of using a regular mouse. The MX Vertical is great but I’ve wanted to try a trackball mouse for a while.
  • Stream Deck - The answer to the question, “omg where is the hang up button on Zoom?!” It’s right there, on a physical button.

The Audio Video Club

Software

Multiplatform

  • 1Password - Use a password manager. Use unique passwords. Use two-factor auth. Just do it, already.
  • Affinity Designer - A full Illustrator experience on all of my devices, even iPad. No subscription fees.
  • Affinity Photo - A full Photoshop experience on all of my devices, even iPad. No subscription fees.
  • Fantastical - Not available on Windows. Fantastical merges a variety of calendars and todo lists together with custom views and natural language processing.
  • Microsoft Edge - Another Chromium based browser but without all the Google stuff. Tab napping to save resources on tabs you aren’t using is a huge plus.
  • Obsidian - A customizable library of Markdown files you can optionally apply end-to-end encryption to and sync.
  • VS Code - A fast and reliable code editor that is extendible. Runs on any platform either natively or in the web browser.

iOS

  • Blink Shell - SSH and Mosh support, now with the ability to mount SSH connections to the Files app, and the ability to launch VS Code.
  • Day One - Keeping a journal is a rewarding way to see how far you’ve come and remember important events in your life.
  • Inspect Browser - Inspect Element for iOS, not as full featured but the best and most reliable I’ve found.
  • Textastic - Old reliable code editor. It’s no VS Code, but it’s pretty good for prototyping HTML or JavaScript.
  • Working Copy - Git on iOS and it works with other apps.

Windows 11

  • PowerToys - There are so many features in here I love but I use FancyZones the most to move windows around in predetermined positions on my screen.
  • Velocity - This is like Dash for Mac but on Windows. It stores a variety of documentation for programming offline where you can easily search it for what you’re looking for.

macOS

  • Alfred - Quickly perform tasks, find apps and files, and manage your clipboard history.
  • Bartender - Everyone wants to be in the macOS menu bar. Hide those distractions.
  • Dash - Stores coding documentation offline where you can search it for what you’re looking for.
  • Hazel - Monitors files and performs actions when certain conditions are met. For example, I have a folder of Markdown files that will automatically commit itself to a Git repository when there are changes.
  • ImageOptim - Please don’t throw images up online without making sure their file size is as small as it can be without reducing image quality.
  • iStat Menus - What company spyware is causing my Mac to be so slow? Oh it’s probably just Docker. I hate it when Docker eats all available resources when it’s idle.
  • iTerm - A terminal that I can split the views in half vertically or horizontally. I swear I don’t use most of what this offers.
  • Keyboard Maestro - Set up custom actions on your Mac. I use it to extend what my Steam Deck can do.
  • Loopback - This is also primarily for the Steam Deck so I can play my annoying soundboard during work meetings.
  • Shush - This app hasn’t been updated in sooooo long and I fear for the day it stops working. It’s a great way to toggle the mute on your microphone or have a cough button.

Customizations

VS Code Extensions

  • change-case - There is nothing like a handy way to convert which case your text or variables are.
  • Code Spell Checker - Never spend another hour trying to debug code that would work if didn’t make that typo.
  • GitHub Copilot - This pair programmer’s inteligence is like magic, but it does pay to keep an eye on it so it stays on track.
  • GitHub Pull Requests and Issues - Create and review PRs without having to find what your looking for in GitHub.
  • Live Share - Invite someone you trust to code along side you each from the comfort of each other’s own VS Code.
  • Remote Development - I use this for connecting to a Windows Subsystem for Linux quite often, but it’s also great for working over SSH.
  • Sort lines - Like casing, there’s nothing like a quick way to remove duplicates from a list and sort it at the same time.
  • Turbo Console Log - Highlight text and press a keyboard shortcut to have your own easy to find console log. Each log is easily identifiable with an emoji, file name, and line number.

Browser Extensions

Multiplatform

  • Dark Reader - Outside of Safari, I use this to manually make bright websites that are hurting my eyes dark.
  • DuckDuckGo Privacy Essentials - no Mobile Safari support
  • Magnet Links - Makes Magnet Links work with Put.io. I made this!
  • React Developer Tools - No Safari support. This is for debugging React.
  • Refined GitHub - Various customizations for GitHub to fill some gaps.
  • Tabby Cat - No Safari support. Random cute cats in every tab.
  • uBlock Origin - No Safari support. Blocks ads and trackers for your security.
  • X to Y - Replace words in text or links with other text. I made this too!

Safari

  • 1Blocker - Blocks ads and trackers for your security, even inside apps.
  • Baking Soda - Replaces all video players (except YouTube, see Vinegar below) with a native video player where you can choose to have picture-in-picture or stop that annoying auto-play
  • Noir - My preferred extension for applying dark mode to websites that haven’t implemented their own dark modes yet.
  • Vinegar - Replaces YouTube video players with one that supports picture-in-picture and stops that annoying auto-play. (use with Baking Soda to make all video players play nice)

Boop: the Scriptable Scratchpad.

okat.best

This is pretty cool, I will definitely be writing some custom scripts for it. During my time as an engineer I’ve always thought the best way to steal company secrets is to make a JSON formatter website or something. I love their headline, “Stop pasting company secrets into random websites.”

DeepL Translate

deepl.com

Translations with DeepL feels more accurate and more natural. I am looking forward to a browser extension.

Quick Assist in Windows 10

microsoft.com

Sometimes you need to help your family out from miles away. I had no idea this feature was in Windows, for free. Oh, and did I mention it just works?

LumaFusion

luma-touch.com

I’ve been looking at this app for a while, but it really feels like the closest thing to Final Cut Pro on the iPad (or iPhone?) I was able to take a hour long video and chop it up almost instantly.

Visual Studio Live Share

microsoft.com

A new plugin from Microsoft for their code editor allows people to collaborate in real time on projects. This looks so fun.

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