I live in OS X but use Windows for work via VMWare Fusion. I find myself constantly trying and failing to use OS X keyboard shortcuts in Windows. Usually it’s harmless but occasionally it can hinder productivity dramatically. Case in point the VM Killer: Command-W (⌘W).
OS X’s flexibility makes fixing this super simple.
Open System Preferences and click Keyboard.
Click the Shortcuts tab, select App Shortcuts in the list on the left and click the + button to add a new shortcut.
In the box that pops up select VMware Fusion from the Application drop down. Now type the word Close exactly into Menu Title. Click in the Keyboard Shortcut box and press Shift + Command + W (⇧⌘W). Finally click the Add button.
You’ve just rewired the Close command shortcut from ⌘W to ⇧⌘W and saved yourself from closing your VM with pure muscle memory and habit.
#1. Stop Copying and Pasting
Seriously the time you think you’re saving is not worth the risk of introducing a hard-to-spot bug because you forgot to change part of what you copied. Worse yet is if you’re just copying and pasting without editing.
#2. Stop Abusing Search and Replace
A couple weeks ago on a whim I downloaded the much-hyped Mailbox App on my iPhone 5. I was pretty interested in what this app could do to help make my inbox more productive. I was quickly slapped in the face by a screen indicating I had to wait in line and there were nearly 500,000 people in front of me! Mein Gott!
Music at Work
Music is an important part of my daily office experience. My co-workers and I tend to rock out as we tackle our day. It helps tune out the world and allows us to focus on the code. This has been more or less accurate for many of the devs I’ve met over the years. What’s unique about my current environment is the lack of cubicles and earbuds.
We use an open concept with developers sitting in what amounts to a square round table of desks. Everyone is within earshot for instant communication and you only plug earbuds in if your after some private time. So without earbuds pumping music we had to figure out how to get tunes playing in the office.
I’m an Apple fan and love their hardware and OS X. You won’t find a non-Apple computer in my house. This wouldn’t be unusual except that I make my living creating software for the Windows platform. Weird or not I’m sold on Apple (for now) and given a choice it’s what I’ll be using. Of course this leaves the little problem of running Windows on my Mac so I can actually do my job.
Buying a new iPhone from Apple?
Prepare to get nailed with a $36 upgrade fee from AT&T (assuming your still painfully locked into a contract).
I’m not opposed to the idea itself. Perhaps they do have some “cost” associated with allowing my new device on their network and that’s fine. What I do have a problem with is their lame excuse for the fee.
AT&T’s Official Explanation
The upgrade fee is a one-time fee that allows us to assist customers by recommending new equipment, offering special offers and discounts, providing assistance with the upgrade process if needed, and supporting the returns process within 14 days. These specialized processes help us to ensure you are satisfied with your new equipment and are ready to use it the day you receive it. The upgrade fee allows us to defray some of these additional service costs.
The truth is if I have an issue with my iPhone I’m taking it to Apple (where I bought it) not to AT&T. Also, it takes a sick and twisted individual to call AT&T to get help with how to use an iPhone.
It all boils down to money. AT&T is a giant corporation that’s simply too big to notice why this is wrong. It’s just another example of them trying to squeeze every last drop of profit out of their customers.
This morning I heard about Git 1.8 being available. I headed over to http://git-scm.com/ on my MacBook Pro and clicked Download and was all set in under a minute. I came into work this morning thinking I’d have a similar experience on my Windows VM. I went to the site and saw Latest stable release
1.8.0 but when I hit Download I was greeted with this screen telling me I’m downloading a 3 month old release of Git 1.7.11.
With the awesome tools of today you can have a decent prototype up and running in a matter of hours. Getting a proof-of-concept up and running fast so you can get start gathering feedback quickly is incredibly useful. An idea or design can sound great on paper but look awful once implemented. The faster you can find this out the faster you can move on to a better design.