My Current Setup

Nov 13th, 2018

I write code almost exclusively with Sublime Text 3. I’ll use VIM when I’m exploring things on a server but in general I’ve become quite accustomed to Sublime Text 3 and the way it works. I use a MacBook Pro 15” with a separate 32” monitor. This two screen approach lets me stay focused but also keep other windows open if need be. I recently attempted a 3 monitor approach with my laptop, main monitor and a tall screen but I found I kept too many things in my face throughout the day which led to distraction. I will in general work with fullscreen apps. This means each app has its own space which I can toggle between using the Apple Mouse’s two finger swipe, or three finger on the trackpad. I love this manner of working since I work the same way when I’m just on my laptop as well, giving me lots of space for code on screen. I’ll set up my screens in the following manner:

MacBook Pro

  • TablePlus (non-fullscreen)
  • Things (non-full screen)
  • AirMail (full screen)
  • Slack (full screen)

Main Monitor

  • Empty desktop (with iTerm overlay)
  • Sublime Text 3 (full screen)
  • Chrome (full screen)
  • Bear (full screen)
  • Github app (non-fullscreen)

If I have Discord open I will often keep it on the main screen and occasionally chat in the PHPUgly channel. I pop iTunes open and closed throughout the day. I use iTunes because its easy and I primarily listen to classical music and soundtracks while I work. I use the Alfred workflow tool for all sorts of things, from calculations to opening any apps, setting DND timers and more. I also remapped my keyboard bindings to toggle the macOS notification panel open. This can be incredibly helpful to check in on potential messages when you’ve been zoned in for a while. I use Magnet so I can snap windows to half screen quickly without splitting them in full screen which I’ve never really liked.

I never do anything with git in Sublime Text and I use iTerm for anything CLI related. I use Dracula theme for iTerm and have a variety of aliases I use to make my time in the CLI fast. I often keep it consuming the main screen thats empty, but with a quick keyboard shortcut iTerm will take the whole screen so I can see what’s going on quickly but also get it out of the way when I don’t need it. With iTerm I use ZSH and have a variety of aliases most of them are simply shortcuts to project group directories. I generally use the Github app for all things git related unless its merging and rebasing those I often do in iTerm, but I find the app to have a really simple UI for handling selecting of lines or files for a commit, rather than lazily do things like git add . or have to specify files in iTerm.

Table Plus is the newest addition to my workflow, for the past few years I’ve been using Sequel Pro but since it’s been a long time since it received any release updates I started looking for a change. Table Plus isn’t a perfect replacement but its getting there and gets constant releases on a regular basis. It’s also able to handle more than just MySQL which is something I’ve wanted for a while, since I don’t like having to have multiple GUIs for different databases.

Airmail has been my favourite app for email for a few years now, it gets regular updates and has a great rule system which syncs with my iPhone which makes my email incredibly easy to manage. Slack is mandatory since our team uses it, and I use it for social groups as well such as LaraChat. Bear is my primary general writing tool and notebook. Though I have notebooks on my desk for general brain dumping, Bear is where I clean those thoughts up. I keep project notes organized by date and blog/creative writing organized by draft, editing, and published.

The last thing I’m going to talk about here is Things. Things is an amazing app which has become a staple in my daily life and workflow. I’ve tried a variety of todo apps and never had as good an experience as I’ve had with Things. The UI is incredibly well thought through and elegant. I’m able to set deadlines for tasks and even set tasks to be visible by a specified date. Its organization by area and project makes it easy to track a project, but also easy to keep a list of things to do in for my home which isn’t really project specific. Though the iOS version doesn’t have a dark UI yet, I’m hoping that will be in the near future. It has simple integration options for Zapier as well which can help streamline my general workflow.

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