When it comes to web development, there are tons of resources out there for us to use. And for every tool and resource out there, there’s likely multiple alternatives that work just as well with minor differences so it just comes down to personal preference. That is the case with the tools I’m going to share with you here, but I’ve been using each of these tools for the past couple of years and they’ve helped me A LOT, so I wanted to make sure I shared these specific ones. If you are interested in using any of these resources, click the title name of the resource and you will be taken to their web page where you can check them out and sign up.
This one is probably obvious to most people, but hey it might not be for some others. Dropbox has been by side for years and years. Before I even got into web design and development, I have been using Dropbox to store my files. Dropbox is a cloud storage service that allows you to store your files in an easily accessible cloud. The two main components of why I like Dropbox so much and why I always recommend it, is because: #1, the Files can very easily be uploaded and accessed by you, the uploader. And #2, the Files can very easily be shared and accessed by others. At least for Mac, uploading a file to Dropbox is just as easy as placing it in any other local folder. I can easily click the Dropbox icon at the top of my taskbar, click the folder icon, then drag any file I want to upload to my Dropbox cloud storage and it will be there just like that. Then, if I want to share that file, I can just write click on the file/folder and select “Copy Dropbox Link” and the I am able to share the file just like that. These are the two main reasons why I love Dropbox and why I encourage everyone that utilizes cloud storage, to use it.
As a developer, I was constantly finding myself in need of icons for my web projects. As web developers, most of us don’t create our own icons to use on our websites. We leave that part of the project up to people with graphic design skills and those who can create very nice visual icons. Unfortunately, it isn’t always financially feasible to pay someone to create custom icons for our site, especially for all of our personal projects. This is where a service like FlatIcon comes in. A subscription to FlatIcon will give you access to TONS of icon designs that you can download and use in your very own projects and as longs as you’re a paid subscriber, you don’t have to give credit! Not that I don’t think these authors deserve credit or that I don’t want to give it to them, but listing a bunch of names at the bottom of a website sort of destroys the overall look of the design.
If you’re a designer who knows how to create their own beautiful custom icons, this tool wouldn’t be of much use to you. But for people who mainly focus on the development side of things for web projects, this tool can save you TONS of time. Even for designers I still think this tool is worth it because for only $10 per month you can get access to all of these icons in vector format where you can make changes to them yourself. They offer icons of all kinds so I really recommend checking this tool out if you’re someone who likes to build very nice-looking web projects but don’t have the time or ability to create nice icons for your site.
FileZilla is a free FTP application that I use to connect to my domains and upload my websites to them. I have been using this for the past couple of years and it has never given me any problems and I absolutely love it. They are also always updating it and improving it so there’s honestly nothing to dislike about it. I haven’t tried other FTP applications so I can’t really say if this is the “best” one, but I haven’t used other one’s simply because I’ve never needed to. FileZilla has worked for me since day one and that was back when I had no idea of how to even use it and was intimidated by the idea of launching a website on my own. If someone like me at that time figured it out and didn’t have any problems, I’m sure you won’t either. Other FTP applications likely work in a very similar way, but I can only vouch for FileZilla. Check it out!
There are lots of options you can go with for hosting and they all are essentially going to offer the same kinds of things. But, I’ve been using BlueHost almost exclusively for the past couple of years with no problems so that’s the one I recommend. I’ve used GoDaddy in the past for some of my domains as well and I used to recommend that one as well because I never had any problems with it, but now I’m working with a client who purchased their domain on GoDaddy and everything was going good up until this error that I literally just ran into and it’s one of those “Sorry but an unknown error occurred” and it’s been popping up for a day straight no matter what I try to do so I’m going to have to call them. But, who knows what the issue could be? It could be my fault so I don’t want to bash it too much but I just said all that to make the point that I’ve never had this sort of problem with BlueHost. At least not facing the same unknown error for a full-day. That hasn’t happened. So, if you need hosting I recommend going with BlueHost. They’re relatively fast and reliable and it isn’t very expensive. Check them out!
#5 Visual Studio Code
Visual Studio Code is a text-editor and when it comes to text-editors, it really comes down to personal preference on which one you want to use. I, along with most other developers, have used and tried out lots of text editors. Sublime Text, Brackets, Atom, Notepad++, and Visual Studio Code just to name a handful. I say it comes down to personal preference because they all come with similar shortcuts and abilities, and your preference really matters because your text-editor is something you’ll be utilizing OFTEN as a developer. It’s where you write all the code! I recommend using VSCode(Visual Studio Code) for a few reasons.
- It has the best user experience in terms of look and basic functionality in my opinion.
- Tons and tons of plugins to make your life easier and enhance the functionality.
- Constantly being updated to be made better
- I’ve talked with lots of senior developers and they say they love it for all the same reasons I do!
These are the reasons why I suggest to use Visual Studio Code. It works very well and it honestly just feels like a more complete text editor than others. There’s nothing wrong with a text-editor application like Atom or Brackets, but it just feels like they are slightly below VSCode in terms of ease of use and functionality. But hey, someone who’s been using Atom for years and has all of their plug-ins setup that they are already very familiar with would definitely say Atom is easier to use than VSCode, and they would not be lying since that is what they are most familiar with. But since I’ve been using VSCode a solid 80–90% of the time for the past year or so, I’ve gotten VERY used to it and prefer it over others. I recommend trying it out if you’re a beginner and it will likely be your preferred choice from there on out.
At the end of the day, most developer tools and resources comes down to personal preference. These are the tools I prefer to use and I am definitely not calling you wrong if you like to use other alternatives to these. I just wanted to share this list for beginner’s out there wondering what they should use. These tools here haven’t let me down yet so I recommend them to you as I believe they will not let you down either. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading and may God bless you!