In my last post, I went on a small tirade towards the end about Dreamweaver and what not to use in Web Development. This time, I want to tell you what you should be using (or at least, what I prefer to use).
First, let me get this out there: I stay away from full-blown IDEs. While I do see their value, the bloat and unneeded features that come along with an integrated development environment like Dreamweaver or the Eclipse-based web dev IDE’s (like Aptana Studio) is just too much for me. I prefer to use a few lightweight applications that are extendable so that I can add only the features I want.
One of the biggest strengths of Sublime Text 2 is its plugin system (which they call “packages”). Packages can be written by anyone and are easily installed through a built-in Package Manager. While there are a ton of packages available (with more constantly being developed and introduced to the community) a few of my favorites are:
1) Prefixr – Do you use CSS3 at all? Do you have all your vendor prefixes memorized? This awesome plugin will auto-magically add the ones you need with simply a keypress.
2) SFTP – Having to bounce back and forth between a text editor and a FTP program can be irritating. The SFTP plugin for Sublime Text 2 is an easy-to-use solution. My only complaint about it is there is no way to view the remote file system, only the local. That’s what a regular FTP program like Filezilla is for though.
3) Side Bar Enhancements – I’m a big fan of the folder view in the sidebar, but its default functionality is a bit lacking. This plugin extends that functionality with a number of new functions and additions to the right-click context menu.
The text editor is the most important part of any Web Developers development stack. It’s what they spend the most time staring at and using. I believe it’s important enough I spent my whole word limit on it! Next time I’ll get into some more of the applications necessary to be a good developer.
Check out these articles for some more Sublime Text 2 tips and tricks as well: