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What is on my computer

Tools and apps I work with - today: Kai Brüning

Kai Brüning, ProjectWizards GmbH

Hello, I am Kai Brüning and I work as a software developer on the products of ProjectWizards. My focus is on the deeper layers, the engine room of the software, so to speak.

I am responsible for the Syncing solution of Merlin Project and often work in the model layer.

  • The main tool is of course Xcode, Apple's integrated development environment. With Xcode I edit the source code until the integrated compiler translates it successfully. In addition to the actual program code, there is a lot of test code, which is automatically executed by Xcode and thus ensures that I don't tear up everything else when fixing bugs. A debugger is also integrated into Xcode, which I can use to examine the behavior of the code and identify errors. Working with Xcode is mostly a joy, but it's still far from perfect: we often enough wonder why Apple's internal developers put up with this or that problem. Alternatives are few, if only because Xcode is free.

  • We manage our source code in Git, the other ingenious invention of Linus Thorvalds. Git is a command line tool, as a graphical user interface I mostly use Tower. Xcode also has a Git integration, but so far I find Tower to be clearer and more versatile.

  • Without BBEdit hardly any developer can get by. Even if I write the source code in Xcode, BBEdit's capabilities with really large text files and the many built-in tools for comparing files, for example, are indispensable.

  • For us developers, the Unix base of macOS is still a big plus. The built-in Terminal app gives me access to the whole world of Unix tools. Or I can use Git commands to fix things that I have carelessly broken in Tower.

  • Normally the way from the source code goes over compiler and linker to the machine code, which is delivered alone. With the Hopper Disassembler I can partially reverse the path and analyze foreign code. This has often helped us when we don't understand a behavior of the system frameworks and Apple's documentation is once again insufficient.

  • With Parallels Desktop I can run older macOS versions for testing. Or Windows to explore how MS Project does this or that. We recently switched from VMWare to Parallels after VMWare let the quality slip.

  • With the release of DeepL, machine translation has become viable for us in real terms. I use the DeepL app to translate the texts of the user interface.

  • As in the entire company, Slack is always running with me and ensures internal contact. Since we work - independently of Corona - in a distributed manner, Slack also has to replace the kitchenette and is correspondingly important.

  • The built-in apps like Mail, iCal, Contacts, Preview, Safari largely do what they are supposed to. I am much too lazy to look at alternatives. Except for Safari: there I decidedly don't want anything else, since I only trust Apple to protect my privacy a bit.

Posted by Kai Brüning on April 14th, 2021 under Internal
Tags: tools software personal-setup apps remote-work

Merlin Project on the Mac and iPad

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