What makes or made your life easier as a developer?

Maybe a specific language or framework? Or a book or tool perhaps? What’s made your life easier and what do you think could make the lives of other devs easier?


Corresponding tweet for this thread:

Share link for this tweet.

1 Like

The book ’ Pragmatic Thinking and Learning: Refactor Your Wetware’ has been helpful in my career.


A good IDE. I am absolutely against the stance of those that say “any programmer can program just fine in a simple text editor”, well sure you can but you can be significantly more effective in a good IDE. It’s both a great teaching tool and a great productivity tool.


For me, using frameworks and languages that are NOT highly opinionated in how they are used or constructed has made my life easier. I know that a lot of devs really like a “guided experience” where there is an “angular” way of doing things or an “asp.net” way of organizing their app.

Given the choice, if I was doing web I would pick React over Angular. Or just using the plug library in elixir over something like ASP.NET.

But, at the same time when it comes to languages, I would pick ocaml/F# over python or ruby any day because the type system is a constraint that is specific enough to how the program should behave without limiting my ability to express my intent in the code. In other words, the type system doesn’t get in the way.


I am in the middle. I don’t want to be dependent on GUI-specific IDE and that’s why I went with Emacs very early on in my career (19 years ago). Nowadays I am eyeing NeoVIM and we’ll see how that goes in a few months.

Stuff like Eclipse and IDEA however, total nope from me. I heard good things bout CLion from you and several others but I am still hesitant for the same reasons.

What I would truly love to see are better TUI IDEs. Spacemacs / Doom Emacs / some VIM configuration are kind of there but do not go far enough.


I more switch between a multitude of different IDE’s that basically all of them have become fairly natural for me now, so I guess that’s one way to not be dependent on a single one, lol. ^.^

I’m curious about neovim, need to look at it someday. My most-used IDE’s are vim, emacs, clion, intellij, kdevelop, and… one more but bugger me I can’t recall what it was… >.>

True that! If clion/intellij came with a TUI that I could use, that would be amazing!!


Hi, the things that made my life easier as a developer is as follows:

  • access to an active developer community that’s open to newcomers and answering their questions

  • resources (i.e. books, articles, online courses, webinars, and so on)


this, especially when a community really welcomes newcomers (ie Elixirforums, slack or in telegram channel)…


Ebooks, training/tutorial videos, webinars has helped a lot :slight_smile:


A calm mind to understand things easily :relieved:


Thank you for saying this, I am tired of hearing this from people that IDE doesn’t matter. In fact, I was once made fun of when I was complaining broken IDE plug-in for Go (I think around the time modules came by) and spent some time reading about it to get a fix. Real programmers don’t need IDE is a saying I don’t agree with.

So this is my nod to your reply, slight rant, and answer to the question asked here. :slight_smile:


Anything that improves productivity is very welcome, IDEs included.

It’s just that in my career I very often had to live-fix things on servers so gradually I abandoned GUI-centric productivity tools in favour of CLIs and TUIs. Because gaining one skill (GUI IDEs) that you can’t use even as rare as 10% of the time is in my eyes a poorly invested time.

But I admit that lately I am changing my mind on this as well, because I no longer fix things on servers (for like 5 years now).



That’s just gatekeeping and hobbling oneself for no reason whatsoever. I’ve been programming for well over 35 years now, IDE’s are magical productivity enhancements that help make program faster, clearer, and reduce my bug count, once I learn the IDE that is, which doesn’t take long. Now I don’t think one should just learn just one IDE, but rather many, learn the IDE “concept”.

Hence my whole thing about don’t just learn one IDE. Like 40% of my time coding is in emacs after all, which is a wonderful TUI GUI, not as good as kdevelop or jetbrains things or so, but it’s close enough to significantly improve my productivity and quality anyway.

  1. Second display
  2. A good mechanical keyboard
  3. Vim
  4. Vim Emulators for Code Editors and IDEs
  5. Settings Sync VSCode Extension
  6. Oh My Zsh
  7. Learning.Oreilly (books, videos, online classes, interactive learning)
  8. Linkedin Learning (using occasionally)
  9. Books by PragProg, Manning, and others