Developer’s Toolkit: Alex Lee

This post is part of a series where Behance developers talk about the various tools they use to get things done and make ideas happen.

1. Who are you and what do you do at Behance?

Greetings all! I’m Alex Lee and I joined the team at Behance to do crazy JavaScript for our various web apps. Before I joined, only Dave Stein was doing the heavy JavaScripting. That at least partially contributes to his creeping madness. Since day 1 of working here, I have been charting the great tumultuous seas of JavaScript, building the new Action Method Online, which I can assure everybody is at least 17 times better than the current one.


2. What hardware do you use?
I’m pretty hardware agnostic. Usually you’ll find me working on Intel PCs just because it’s the most prevalent and easiest option. I do however have severe allergic reactions to keyboards with the “compact” layout for the Ins/Del/Home/End/Pg Up/Pg Dn block. Cramped keyboards in general cause me more grief than is worth the space saved. At work here I like having the dual monitors so I can see the browser and the code at the same time.

3. What software do you use?
Linux. Arch Linux, to be exact. After years of using Ubuntu, I’ve come to a point where the ‘ease of use’ offered by standard distributions doesn’t make up for flexibility to do things just a bit differently (or do extra things). Alongside Linux, I’ve got my trusty Vim text editor and a Firefox plugin to make it almost entirely like Vim. You might say I am a huge fan of Vim. Other than the standard UNIX-era tools, I don’t really have need for much else.

4. What do you listen to while working?
Anything without lyrics or at least in a language I can’t understand.  For this reason I have a huge collection of soundtracks, Classical, and just plain weird music. I find words in lyrics distract me too much. While deep into writing code, I like to put on songs in the minor key, as tonality affects creative and analytical abilities. I swear it helps.

5. Out of all the equipment used, what piece of software/hardware do you feel is the most useful of all?
The keyboard: something many people ignore just because they have a mouse and a fancy UI. The fact that the mouse is more than twice the hand span of any set of keys away from the keyboard makes switching to clicking, then switching back to the keyboard to type one of the most irritatingly slow and repetitive actions. If I could map everything to the keyboard I would… for most actions anyway.

Posted on January 24th, 2012 by Alex