Inspired years ago by Scott Hanselman's tool list and more recently by Wes Bos' uses and prodded into action so I could make a pull request to the awesome-uses repo by Wes Bos, here is a list of the tools that I use on a daily basis:

Operating System

  • Fedora - currently using version 29. I've been using different flavors of Linux off and on since 2009, but after switching to Fedora (26?) in November of 2017 from Win10 both at work and at home, I haven't looked back since...

IDE's/Code Editors

  • PhpStorm - This is my go-to workhorse IDE - amazing to work in, not a single feature that I can think of that is missing. In fact, I have ALL of the JetBrain's IDE's on my work machine thanks to their Toolbox Subscription model, absolute best bang for your buck, IMO.

  • Visual Studio Code - I pull this one out when I don't need all the features of PhpStorm and want to use something a little lighter.

  • Sublime Text 3 - Because a carpenter needs to have more than one type of hammer in their bag, and be proficient in using them. This is another great lightweight code editor that still gets lots of use.

  • Eclipse BIRT Report Designer - I use this one reluctantly at work when I need to write a database report.


  • Guake - I love the f12 hotkey to bring this up, so fast to fire off a quick terminal command

  • Terminator - If I want a more persistent terminal docked beside another window, I'll fire up Terminator

File Comparator

  • Beyond Compare - Nothing beats the features of Beyond Compare for file/directory comparison.

  • meld - Is a great free alternative

SQL Tools

  • DataGrip - Another great tool from Jetbrains. I'm still finding a new neat feature almost daily.

  • HeidiSQL - I use HeidiSQL via wine to address a couple areas that DataGrip is lacking in:

    • Copying tables with or without data to a new database - I copy a lot of tables from prod to dev to develop with real data, or sometimes, I'll copy a table from dev/test to prod when I am implementing a new feature. DataGrip has implemented this recently, but it is still no where as nice as using HeidiSQL

    • Creating VIEWs - this is another area where HeidiSQL beats DataGrip hands down


  • notion - I'd tried lots of other apps to keep notes in and nothing comes close to the power of notion. I've only scratched the surface of its flexibility, but it is still amazingly useful even only using the bare-bones features.


  • Razer Black Widow Ultimate 2013 Keyboard - I wanted a mechanical keyboard with lighting and this one filled the bill. I liked it so much that I ran out and bought a second one for work after only using it at home for a week. They've served me well for almost 6 years now, but I am tempted by the sexiness of the wasd CODE keyboard. I might pick up one as a present to myself someday soon.

  • Sleekform Ergonomic Adjustable Office Desk Chair - I lost my Herman Miller Aeron chair in a break up, so I replaced it with this much more affordable knock off from Amazon. It's just as comfortable and durable as the Aeron, and assembly was much easier.


I couldn't last a day in my office or home office without some music...

  • Thorens TD-166 MkII Turntable - They made everything better in the 1970s (including me) - This was my Father's Day present to myself several years ago.

  • Kenwood KA-8006 Solid State Stereo Integrated Amplifier - Just look at all those real knobs and switches... and it sounds great, too!

  • KLH AV-44 Speakers - The only part of my system made this century, but I'll give them a pass. They still can keep up with my vintage gear.

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Date Published: 23 March, 2019


About Todd

Full stack application developer. Life-long learner. Pragmatic programmer. Believer in clean coding. Proponent for extensible and reusable code. Hobbies include (very) amateur photography, collecting old jazz records and going to live music performances.

North Central Ohio, US

Obligatory Disclaimer

All opinions are my own, probably wrong, and subject to change without notice.

© 2017-2019 Todd Eidson. All content is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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