To Tool is Human

Matt Watson BuildBetter Leave a Comment

It has been said that tools are what made us human. Our ability to create and use tools allows us to do things that were not imaginable

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before. Software itself has made developers profoundly more productive over the last 50 years. Can you imagine programming with punch cards? Amazingly, some developers still don’t use a debugger while writing code!

I’ve always loved developer tools, but I never thought I’d make them. I started Stackify in 2012 after being frustrated by the lack of tools for monitoring and troubleshooting production application problems. All I wanted was easy access to metrics, errors, logs, slow DB queries, and other performance details. That was asking for a lot if you couldn’t afford to spend $100,000 on an enterprise APM product.

Earlier in my career it wasn’t practical to collect tons of application data, then store and process it. Thanks to the cloud, things are changing rapidly. We’ve built tools that collect and analyze terabytes of application performance data every day— at an incredibly low cost. For ten bucks a month, millions of developers can now afford a tool that used to cost tens of thousands.

Incidentally, this past year we stumbled into something that could be even more important to developer’s work: Prefix. It’s a simple profiler that provides an instant feedback on your apps performance while you’re building it. We’ve had a blast offering it as a free tool and portal to the rest of our amazing toolset.

Now is a good time to be a developer. It was great to chat with several amazing code warriors about their most important tools and tricks. Their responses comprise the remainder of this issue. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

About Matt Watson

Matt is the Founder & CEO of Stackify. He has been a developer/hacker for over 15 years and loves solving hard problems with code. While working in IT management he realized how much of his time was wasted trying to put out production fires without the right tools. He founded Stackify in 2012 to create an easy to use set of tools for developers.