I wrote this recently on my personal site although it’s the prefect content for our business site as well.
Over the last few weeks my company, sixty4media, has themed, coded, and tweaked quite a few WordPress sites (and even more over the years before we even had the company). I am often asked what I use to code or theme so here are some of the basic tools that make my life a whole lot easier.
MAMP allows you to run a mini WordPress web server from your computer so that you can theme sites locally, without having them published online or on a development site.
You need a good FTP application for uploading files and images on the fly. I’m using Cyberduck right now but I’ve had many suggestions for more productive tools (and I can’t for the life of me remember the one that Tod recommended).
For Mac OS X and Leopard
A great text editor (used for PHP files) that works nicely with Cyberduck by selecting it as your file editor under preferences. It colour-codes nicely and is very simple to use.
MacRabbit – CSS Edit (for Macs only)
All in one CSS editing tool. Allows you to eyedrop colours, shows your properties in a sidebar, knows where to place brackets etc. and even auto-completes some elements. In the sidebar it also displays colours on anything that has a background colour ie. if your footer is blue, it will show up blue in the sidebar list.
This last one isn’t downloadable, the codex is an online resource for all issues, questions, and reference materials in the WordPress realm.
John is usually on top of all the latest applications and is even a beta tester for some upgraded versions of the software listed above. He’s great at staying on the cutting edge and then passing the knowledge on to me so I’m sure my staple apps will probably change soon, but for now – they’re great basics.