Friday, September 22, 2006

Tech update

Here's a list of subtle tech tools and products that have escaped public limelight, that I have grown to appreciate and love:

  1. Ubuntu Bash: The bash is now context sensitive. In layman's language it knows which file you are going to open based on the program you are going to run. Suppose you are using latex. The folder is littered with file.tex, file.aux, file.dvi, and file.pdf. Normally bash auto completion would auto complete till file. and wait for you to type the rest. Now it just completes the command line depending on the program, i.e. if you have $latex, the bash automatically place file.tex in front of it when you type f and press tab.
  2. Vim7 time line: I haven't used this feature much but it looks very promising. If you pass the command :earlier 5m the editor presents you with a 5 minutes earlier screen. Neat damage control mechanism.
  3. Cscope: Something like ctags but more robust and flexible. Better vim integration.
  4. Vim autocmd: Ok.. this is pretty old but I discovered it quite recently in one of the forums. I use it to generate broiler plate for my programs.
  5. Ruby: Well I know its an awesome programming tool. I love it because its a programming language for non-programmers. I taught my flatmate, MS in Biotech, ruby in half an hour, who now uses it for analysing his data (he was using excel to do that before...eech).
  6. Billmonk: Amazing website that makes money transaction between friends less awkward and hassle free.
  7. Prosper in LaTeX: SuperHot package for creating presentations in LateX.
  8. Launchy: Its a windows based program that indexes your start menu and makes them available in a command line like run app. In short, it cuts down the trips to your mouse.
  9. Avast and Zone Alarm: I must say hundred time faster, leaner and better than Norton Antivirus.. what more; its free.
  10. mp3info: Cute little command line tool to dump the ID3 tag information of a MP3 file.
11. Synergy: How can I forget Synergy? Its a cross platform keyboard and mouse sharing software and comes in handy when you are working on multiple computers. The best part is that it also enables clipboard sharing, so you can cut from one computer and paste in another.

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