My Web Development Tools - 2016 Edition

The world is going gaga for mobile apps. They are seen as the most accessible form of software and the market for them has moved at a considerable pace. The only problem with mobile applications is that only the bigger companies can usually afford to have their apps available on each of the different mobile platforms. This isn’t a problem for the web though.

For me the web is still the most accessible and reliable platform for applications there is. Using just a single interface (your browser) you can access millions of products and services. Here are a few I use every day to help with my web development work.


Despite a flutter with BitBucket it’s hard to move away from Github. Their product is delivering features on a steady basis and just about every developer has a profile there. The Github community is growing and with more organisations making Github the home for their projects it has become the goto place for sharing code and projects.


For project management with clients, I like to use accessible and visual tools. Trello fits the bill in both respects. Their Kanban style boards are great for getting an over view of a project and the ability to include checklists, attachments and comments makes it a great collaboration platform for myself and my clients.


In the last year I’ve reduced the number of SAAS platforms I’m using down to just Heroku. Gone is my Linode and Cloud66 accounts and replaced with Heroku. For my own projects it’s the ideal platform. I always recommend it to clients who are just starting out with a new project. I’ve moved a number of my own Rails applications to here and now use it exclusively for all my web app hosting needs.


My CRM of choice. For a long time I got by on just using an address book, but in time I started to see the need for something more sophisticated than an address book. I needed a tool to record emails with clients, their details and important projects.

I use Highrise on a daily basis and find that it’s ability to send emails to Highrise means that I’m not only collecting my clients information there but also important emails communicating between myself and my clients.


Finally there’s FreeAgent. Still the best invoicing and time tracking solution for freelancers and although I’ve been using it for over three years now, I’m still learning more about it everyday. I’m not using it to it’s full potential at the moment but I am hoping to make better use of it as the year goes on.