Photo by Barn Images / Unsplash

On any day I find myself turning to the same set of tools to get my work done. It's not that these are the best tools, or even necessarily the best tools for me, but they're the best tools that I know of to get out of my way and let me work.  I tend to value simplicity over excellence, although both are appreciated.  Know something better that I should be using?  By all means let me know!


I made the switch to Apple products circa Y2K and I've been very happy with their contined ability to get out of the way and let me "do the thing," rather than "use a computer," the main feeling I never got on a Linux or Windows desktop.  These days I use a 16" M1 MacBook Pro as my personal laptop, paired with an iPhone 12 Pro and an older Apple Watch. At home I have a couple of 27" 5K iMacs that are doing just fine.


Since I'm already invested in the Apple ecosystem, for me the clear winner has been Ulysses.  I used Scrivener for a while, but the automatic effortless syncing and markdown support makes Ulysses a clear winner for me.  Combine with Vellum and you've got a remarkably powerful publishing setup for a relatively small investment.

For note taking, I'm currently exploring Notion.  I've yet to really settle on a good combined meeting notes / tasklist solution that I'm completely happy with, but this is an interesting option - works as something of a personal Jira as well, which is fun.


While I've gone back and forth over the years, I'm quite happy with PyCharm and IDEA from JetBrains as my  IDEs.  I do wonder about Visual Studio Code, and will probably check that out again if I run into something I can't easily do, but for now those two keep me being productive.

I use GitHub for source control, and have reluctantly leaned in to GitHub actions for CI/CD automation.  I don't particularly like coding in Yaml, but none of the other solutions are really any better and I'm already deep into GitHub so... yeah.


Not much, to be honest.  I use Nord VPN as my always-on solution, Safari with AdGuard for casual browsing, and the Apple Mail/Calendar/Photo apps for the things that they're good at, with Google on the backend of mail/calendar.  This blog is powered by a combination of and Rye Whiskey.