My Setup and Tools

I often get asked about what I use to get my work done. This post will be updated regularly with my current toolkit and setup.

Last updated: April 11, 2017

This list is broken into these major categories:

Web Development

Coda and TextWrangler

Coda by Panic is my IDE of choice. I’ve been using it since it first launched and I stuck through the major 2.0 (and subsequently 2.5) release. It has highlighting, remote editing and publishing, previewing, SQL connectors, Terminal, regex search, and git support built in. Tons of third party add-ons available. I’ve written AppleScripts for it and know most commands by heart, so I’m unlikely to jump ship any time soon.

TextWrangler is the text editor I launch if I just need to take a peek at something or quickly clean up some formatting. It is built on the BareBones engine and is ancient, but awesome.

Virtual Box + Vagrant + Homestead

I primarily develop on virtual machines to keep my environments separate. I use Virtual Box to run the VMs, Vagrant to manage them, and Laravel Homestead as my base development environment.

Jekyll & WordPress

This site is powered by Jekyll and is powered by WordPress.

A Small Orange, WPengine, and Amazon Web Services

  • This site is hosted on Amazon S3 and Cloudfront.
  • Most of my various WordPress sites are hosted on A Small Orange. On ASO, go with the Small version, not the Tiny version.
  • Praxis’s high-volume WordPress sites are hosted at WPengine.

Hover and Cloudflare

I use Hover for buying and managing domain names and most DNS management. I use Cloudflare for DNS management on domains that I need SSL on because I love their Flexible SSL plan.


I use Homebrew for package management.

Desktop apps

Backblaze & Carbon Copy Cloner

I use Backblaze for my offsite backup solution and Carbon Copy Cloner with miscellaneous Western Digital and Seagate drives for my onsite backups.

CleanMyMac and Hazel

I use CleanMyMac once a week to clean out the junk that accumulates. I keep Hazel rules running constantly to automate organization on my Mac. The MacSparky Hazel Field Guide will teach you everything you need to know about it.


I use 1Password for secure password management. I’ve also tried LastPass and Dashlane, but nothing can beat 1Password, both in terms of security and easy of use. I’ve also use 1Password for Teams and it works just as well.


TextExpander has radically changed the way I work. If you ever type something more than once, make a snippet for it and save your keystrokes. I also launch scripts and templates from a few keys with this tool. We also recently adopted it at Praxis to keep our customer service answers consistent across staff members.

I’ve searched for years for good bookmark management. is exactly what I’ve been searching for. I dropped Pocket and Instapaper entirely in favor of this.

Private Internet Access

We all need a good VPN, both for privacy and for development QC testing. I’ve been using Private Internet Access for the past four years and am happy with it.


Setapp is a subscription tool for Mac apps. $10 a month gets you access to a ton of great apps. Here are the apps I regularly use from the Setapp bundle:

  • Paste
  • Gifox
  • CleanMyMac
  • Gemini
  • Marked
  • CodeRunner
  • Expressions
  • Sip
  • Squash
  • Ulysses
  • Blogo
  • SQL Pro Studio
  • Forecast Bar
  • Be Focused
  • Capto
  • Base
  • Unclutter

Miscellaneous macOS apps

  • Flycut for clipboard management
  • Sip for color picking and management
  • Bartender for menu bar organization
  • Little Snitch for monitoring my computer’s network traffic and Micro Snitch for monitoring microphone usage.
  • Unclutter for taking quick notes
  • Spark for desktop email
  • RescueTime for app usage statistics
  • iA Writer for general writing. I almost always write in Markdown and export to HTML or PDFs.
  • Amphetamine is the app I use to keep my Mac awake. I use this over Caffeine because it has more triggers and automation options.
  • Screenshot Plus for taking screenshots, automatically uploading them to Dropbox, and then copying the URL directly to my clipboard.

Browser Extensions

I use Safari, Chrome, and Firefox on a daily basis for browsing and testing. Here are plugins I use that make my life easier:

  • Hubspot Sales for email open tracking in Chrome
  • What Font? for font identification in Safari and Chrome
  • Ghostery to prevent tracking in Safari and Chrome
  • AdBlock to block ads in Safari and Chrome
  • Wappalyzer to identify web technologies in Chrome and Firefox
  • DownThemAll for bulk file downloading in Firefox


One response to “My Setup and Tools”

  1. anonymous Avatar

    Make sure to check out for a list of everyone’s /uses pages! Also check out for curated interviews.

    My relevant Uses posts:

    November 2023

    April 2017

    Like this:

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