Development Workflow

April 24, 2019
Reading Time: about 2 minutes


I’m a strong believer that we should improve both at what we do and how we do it. I spend hours at a computer telling it what to do; it follows that I should improve how I tell it what to do. In this post, I’ll focus on plugins/tips/tricks for my development tools. IMO (and in the opinion of these studies), using only the keyboard should be faster than the mouse.


  • Vim (Emacs + evil mode)
  • Zsh
  • Tmux
  • fzf


Vim’s philosophy is that you edit text in modes – moving around and editing. You can find articles on this virtually everywhere, so I’ll focus on what I find more unique: the plugins.


Emacs has better “large feature” support. You can run things that hook back in asynchronously and even run their version of vim, in emacs (evil).


Kythe is an ecosystem that seeks to “understand” code. Specifically, it allows tools to communicate across languages. This is helpful in Vim because it helps you find, for instance, the definition of a function, or where that function may be called, or the documentation for a function. This allows you to “click through” in vim.


Use C-i and C-o to jump forward and backward in a jump list. Typically, you’re supposed to open multiple buffers for all your files so you don’t completely close vim for hours at a time. When you jump to/from functions and in/out of various files, this will track where you’ve been and let you navigate this history easily. Think of it as moving forward and backward in time, vs space.


A nice interactive, powerful shell with pleasant community support.


Track and output how long each command took.


Tmux allows you to group your terminals and split/configure them however you like. The plugin manager is called tpm. Here is a huge list of plugins.


Preserves your contents even when you leave sessions/close down the server completely.


Allows you to reload buffer contents (even stuff like vim files!)


Fzf allows you to fuzzy search through a list of strings.


Fasd sorts past commands by frequency and recency (frecency). When coupled with fzf, it is a powerful way to fuzzy search through opening files you open often. It basically becomes global project or content search that can be coupled with vim.


fzf and history is nice too.