Last week I participated on the FiSTB Testing Assembly event, a day full of great talks and presentations. As one of the interesting talks Aleksis Tulonen gave presentation about “Habitability Matters”. In essence the talk was about the importance of making your working environment as comfortable and usable as possible to facilitate efficient ways of working.
The presentation considered habitability in broad context, from work place and colleagues to computers and software inside it. One example shown in the presentation was use of pinned folders in Windows to quickly access files and folders. This made me think about what are the thing that make my (Windows-based) computers habitable?
Similar to use of pinned folders, I also use pinned folders, shortcuts, bookmarks, environment variables, batch files and aliases to make files and applications easily accessible. But in addition, I realized that I have few applications that I tend to use on all projects regardless of the project domain or technologies. These are the software that get installed first on a new computer and that make me feel familiar with my computer.
So here is my picks of few applications that can help you work more easily.
Console is a Windows console window enhancement with multiple tabs, text editor-like text selection and bunch of other features. I really dislike having multiple console windows opened not being sure which windows is used for which use. Console does the trick by providing multi-tabbed console window with naming to keep track of open consoles. Although being bit old and inactive project, the Console has been stable application filling my needs for keeping console windows organized. For more active and feature-rich alternative, checkout also ConEmu.
MTPutty, or Multi-Tabbed Putty is an multi-tabbed front-end utility for Putty SSH client. Similar to console windows, I also dislike having countless SSH terminals open on my desktop. MTPutty provides simple multi-tab UI for organizing multiple SSH connection under single window. Again, the application is not under active development, but has been stable and provides the features I need.
Notepad++ is a multi-tabbed source code editor and Notepad replacement with syntax-highlighting and vast selection of 3rd party plugins. Not much to say here, simply a great GUI-based text editor.