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A look at Dash, docsets for developers

A look at Dash, docsets for developers

Recently, I read (shared on our Facebook page) the article Productivity Tips for Developers over on the RocketTheme blog.   If you’ve been a reader for awhile, I am always looking for ways to improve productivity.  In this article, there were some great tips and reminders for developers, especially if you work remotely.  One that I often forget is BREAKS!  Yes, I know, it seems obvious, to take a few minutes away to allow thoughts to gel and ideas to form but sometimes, I just get so caught up.

The article capped off the great tips, with a few of the members of the RocketTheme  team (if you don’t know RocketTheme, you might want to check out their templates and extensions) listing out a few tools that they find helpful.  One such tool is Dash.  I’d not heard of it before and anything with the word “dash” in it, I have to check it out.

Here are some questions that come to mind when looking at Dash:

What is Dash?

Dash is a Documentation Browser, Snippet Manager.  If you are like me, you have your own “cheat sheet” for when you are switching between technologies that seems to just “disappear” right at the critical moment you need it.  Dash would remedy this and the best part - it’s offline documentation.  

What operating systems is it available for?

Dash works with OS X 10.7 or later.  It is not available for non-Mac platforms and the reasons are discussed in the Dash for iOS, Android, Windows, or Linux blog post.

Are my oft used technologies/frameworks covered?

Yes they are.  With over 130, I had assumed that they would be, but had to check anyway.  Joomla, Bootstrap, Less, PHP, and JQuery are the ones I end up in the most and they are covered.

How much does Dash cost?

It is free to try but at $20, it seems like a great bargain to save time on the next development project.

Is Dash only document sets?

With Dash if I find myself using/creating the same code over and over again, I can create templates of my repetitive code patterns.  There are also helpful cheat sheets for things like font awesome.  I can even create cheat sheets of my own.

Can I use Dash with my favorite editor?

There are many integration points for editors and code generating tool such as TextWrangler, Eclipse, Coda, Xcode, and more.

Will I use Dash?

Yes!  I’ve already downloaded it.  I really like that it is offline documentation.  This is huge for when I’ve turned off my distractions (email, Twitter, etc) and I am working in a local development environment.  The moment I have to go online to search for the forgotten API, I risk falling into the blackhole of “I’ll check <name your favorite website or social media> quickly while I’m here” only to have wasted, um, lost valuable development time.

Now a question for you, will/do you use Dash?  I’m curious, let me know.  


Dash: http://kapeli.com/dash

RocketTheme: http://www.rockettheme.com

Copyright

© Image credit: Dash - Documentation Browser, Snippet Manager - Kapeli

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