My tech stack: What helps me being productive
In this article I want to tell you what software and hardware I use to be more productive and have an efficient workflow. As I find it helpful to see what others use to adapt some things, I'd like to share my stack as well. I'll keep this as a living document as things change regularly.
Hardware I use
All I wanted was a modern and cheap phone which has a headphone jack, LTE band 800 and a fingerprint sensor: Xiaomi Mi A2 Lite
Computers & desk setup
- Macbook Pro 16" 2019, 2,6 GHz 6-Core Intel Core i7, 32 GB RAM, AMD Radeon Pro 5500M 8 GB
- Monitors @ office desk: LG 29UM57-P 29" ultra-wide, LG Flatron IPS235P 23" FHD (will be replaced soon with two 4k monitors)
- Monitor @ home desk: AOC G2460PF 24" FHD (will be replaced soon with two 4k monitors)
- My absolute favorite mouse is a Logitech G502 (with cable, without). It's super helpful because of its many buttons which you can program to do certain tasks e.g. switching desktops or controlling music.
- My keyboard is a Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad
- My chair in the office and at home is a Robas Lund DX Racer 1
- In-Ear Headphones: RHA T20i. Best in-ears I ever had. I also had the preceding model.
- Over-Ear Headphones: Audio Technica ATH-M50x. Great headphones but I use my in-ears most of the time.
- Xiaomi Band 4 fitness-tracker: Nice gadget to keep on track with my activities. It helps me keep in motion and is a little motivation to do more sport. It also helps to analyze my sleep and is like a lightweight smartwatch.
- Amazon Echo Dot: Handy gadget which helps me with different things like controlling my music, putting things on my grocery list, adding todos to my todo list, wake me up and controlling my lights (these are the features I mostly use).
Software and tools I use
This list could be really long, because there is a huge amount of tools I use. I'll try to focus on the ones I find most helpful regarding my personal workflow and skip most which are business related.
It's the best password manager in my opinion. I use it to store my private passwords as well as the passwords for all my companies. Every site has a unique password and I only need to remember one. There are apps for smartphones as well. Nice extra: it has an integration with haveibeenpwned.com and can warn you if one of your passwords was compromised.
Alfred is a nice alternative for the macOS Spotlight Search and speeds up my workflow a lot. The main features I use are: calculator, open files and folders super fast, snippets, sometimes clipboard history if Paste (see below) didn't work and some workflows like translating words, restarting my touchbar if it stopped working, restart apps, get some special char symbols and some other stuff. As it is easily extendable the possibilities are endless.
Let's me cleanup my menu bar so I only see the information and icons I really need.
Functional music to improve focus, relaxing and sleep. I use it mainly for working focused and it really helps me getting in the zone (flow state).
I use Dropbox to synchronize program settings, projects and nearly everything I need backups from. It's super handy to always be able to access all files I need where ever I am.
I use Droplr if I need to share screenshots, screencasts or files. For example with clients or anyone else. I just need to press
⌘ + ⇧ + 3 and create a screenshot which will be uploaded online and the link will be copied to my clipboard.
Evernote stores all my documents I have. Every single document and letter I get is digitalized and stored in Evernote. This way I'm able to get every single document I need where ever I am.
Beautiful calendar app for macOS.
Google Docs & Sheets
Every spreadsheet I need is created and stored in Google Sheets and Google Docs is used for collaboratively working on documents. This way everything is centralized and I don't need to think about where I stored these things.
Terminal replacement. Nice and handy features.
Awesome banking software which let's me check all my accounts in one central place. I can use it to search in all my accounts at once and also be able to access all my previous transactions. One of my accounts e.g. is at the Postbank which only let's me search the past 3 months of transactions. With Outbank I can search all of them (since I started to use it).
Finder alternative for macOS. It has a lot more features and lets me work faster.
Clipboard history and manager. This is probably one of the most useful things on this list. I use it all the time. As I copy things all the time it can happen that I overwrite something in my clipboard which i still needed. With paste this is no problem because I can access everything I had in my clipboard in the last weeks. This is a huge time saver. Alfred also has this functionality but I find Paste is nicer to use. So I use Alfreds functionality only as backup if Paste didn't start or crashed and I didn't notice it.
Awesome app to work with vector files like SVGs or create layouts. I work with these things all the time when developing websites. Sketch is in my opinion the easiest to use and also best software for it.
Best instant messenger available and way better than WhatsApp (although this isn't hard to accomplish). Some of the main features I like are unlimited storage for sent files, same history on all devices, and my favorite feature: being able to create and use bots. For example Voicy is a bot to transcribe voicemails so it's possible to use the search to search in voicemails or read them when you can't listen them. I also created some bots for myself which help me with some tasks like daily notification about upcoming events in my calendar, forwarding of SMS (so I can copy & paste on my laptop), notifications for orders on Amazon, new calendar entries in shared calendars or PayPal payments just to count a few.
Todoist is my favorite app to organize all my TODOs. I connected it with my Amazon Echo so I'm able to create new TODOs or add new items to my grocery list.
My favorite file transfer client.
My favorite IDE. Easy to extend and with lots of nice features.