It's nagged on me a bit how my last post mentioned only MS products and not those that I deal with after my base install: you know, those developer tools you just can't get along without (R#). It certainly isn't all that important to that post but it got me thinking of putting together and sharing my list of "other" developer tools.
Though it'd been a while, this time, I often rebuild my laptop as a result of new product releases (or pre-releases), conflicting client requirements, or just because I'm not patient enough to troubleshoot PC issues. So I was catching up tonight on some reading and came across altnetpedia's tools list. A solid chunk of the list are tools I use regularly and a number more are ones I use every day. One was missing - Beyond Compare: I've registered and will add it if someone else doesn't beat me to it. Here's my list.
So, as observation, the spirit behind the ALT.NET movement is healthy and a good one. A couple of the movement's doyen are among the bloggers I read regularly, in fact. I find myself cringing at times, though, when reading some of those same altdotneter's "rants". Pause - thinking... And it doesn't feel natural to me that an alternative movement needs to be declared. It feels sort of, umm, .NOTALT.
I find, in an industry that requires its high-end to change quicker than the market, that such broad declarations of the obvious, as described in this What is ALT.NET page, are, well, redundant. I mean - encouraging developers to keep their eyes open to (and fingers in) alternatives is smart. Critical thinking and pushing, not being pulled, (and getting involved) is something to encourage. However, we all, at work at least, need to get to value at some point (soon) and this should be a principle considered as well.
Anyway, the Tools list is a good one: though many are, by no means, alternatives anymore or new, for that matter.
So I've got to go to bed now and hug my tree, spoon my Mac, and dream up my next rage against the Mothership. Then maybe I too can be considered alternative or, perhaps, mainstream...