This is a simple guide on a couple of essential skills and tools that will improve your development game if mastered.

CLI

Whether you work on Linux/Mac/Windows, you will need to learn the basic CLI commands if you want to step up your development flow.

CLI should become your second most used app right after your text editor.

I recommend setting up oh my zsh that will expand your CLI functionality and add some cool looking themes and useful plugins to your CLI.

Git

By far, the most widely used modern version control system in the world today is Git.

The Git Book is a great comprehensive resource for mastering Git as well as this official Bitbucket tutorial.

Below is the list of concepts you should understand:

Git is pretty straightforward and you don’t need to spend a lot of time learning advanced git functionality because it is likely you will not use it at all.

Master your text editor

Speed up your development with simple knowledge of your editor’s shortcuts and functions such as multiline editing, search and replace in the project and fast file switching.

Atom, Sublime Text, or Visual Studio Code are great text editors and you can easily empower them with plugins.

All of the editors mentioned above have framework specific plugins that will provide you with snippets and functions that will speed up your development.

I personally use Visual Studio Code and it is an awesome editor. Also, I use a couple of plugins like the plugin for Git functions and the plugin for automatic code formatting.

Testing

Test your code. Start simple and expand on that. You’ll thank me later.

Although this might be an advanced topic I believe that every Javascript developer should write tests for their code.

Testing the code has awesome benefits and you should start with any kind of tests. Start with writing simple unit tests or start with the end to end tests but just start testing.

Some articles on Javascript testing to get you started:
An Overview of JavaScript Testing in 2018
JavaScript — Unit Testing using Mocha and Chai
Unit testing in Javascript

Use a linter

Code linting is a way to increase your code quality.

All text editors mentioned above have plugins for automatic linting and formatting that are run on file save.

Use this simple tutorial to get you started with ESLint.

Also, I would suggest using Airbnb Javascript style guide.
There are a couple of great style guides out there and Airbnb’s style guide is my personal favorite.

Keep calm and code on

All the tools and skills I mention will not improve your coding skills but they will make you a better developer in general.

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Originally published at www.thecalmcoder.com on August 24, 2018.