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A picture of Rick Casey

Rick Casey

Developer (DIM)

in developer, mac, game, windows

Who are you, and what do you do?

Hey there, I'm Rick Casey and I'm a software developer. I've been developing professional for 25 years now. Writing that now makes it feel so long.. I do it because I enjoy the opportunity software gives us to share and transform information. It's a very creative experience that I've found fulfilling. I wouldn't change it.

I've written less and less code recently. I'm transitioned myself from Software Architect to Development Manager at FIS Global recently. I find myself satisfied with the effort it takes to navigate a project to a finish line. It's a very dynamic process that is clouded by the judgement of many people and often times we can only react to change. We try to prepare, but sometimes you can't. It's been a good test of my skills and it has forced me to become creative in a way that I'm not used to doing. I do miss the days where I could meet my goals by turning on the music and writing code... There are so many meetings now.

One way I've found that lets me keep myself grounded to my experience is working in Open Source. Six years ago, I helped launch Destiny Item Manager to much success. We have supported over 12 million players who use our tool to curate their loot, and find that special piece that helps them play the game. DIM has been a phenomenal experience where I have met so many enthusiastic players and developers who all have an interest in making DIM better. I've learned from them and hope that I've given back as well.

What hardware do you use?

I work on two laptops these days. For the day job, I'm using a 2018 MacBook Pro to develop iOS and Android applications. It has been a very dependable device. For my personal efforts, I own a Surface Laptop 3. I use several applications simultaneously to develop my web apps, and I have found the 10th generation Intel processor to give me all the umph I need to get the job done.

I love the one wire experience used to power my laptop, drive my two 4K monitors, and connect all my peripherals. I had to get creative to take advantage of the incredible connectivity offered by Thunderbolt and USB-C. I use a Surface Dock to connect a single wire to my Surface Laptop. I also use a CalDigit Thunderbolt dock with my MBP. I connect both of the docks to a USB hub and DisplayPort splitter. This gives me push button ability to move my video camera, Blue microphone, and monitors easily between devices. I also use a Logitech M720 Triathlon and Keychron K6 keyboard that lets me bind to multiple Bluetooth devices.

Speaking of microphones, the Blue microphone I use is so much better than anything built into a laptop or webcam. The iCE microphone delivers warmth and body to the calls. It's important to project your best virtually since most of our work is remote these days.

For my app development, I use a Samsung Note 8 device for Android and an iPhone 12 Pro Max for iOS. The Apple phone has been phenomenal in almost every aspect of its hardware and software.

I use AirPods Pro for my audio which helps keep the meeting audio crisp and private. I only wished the noise cancelling mode would last a whole day.

And what software?

I'm already using Windows 11 and it's a worthy successor. The takeaway I have is the operating system feels more cohesive, thought out. There is more fit and finish.

For my day jobs, I live in Teams, Outlook, Excel, and Word. We use Atlassian products like JIRA, Bitbucket, and Confluence. It's all about knowledge sharing and collaboration.

What I have bought for myself and do use is Todoist, 1Password, and Grammarly. I find these three utilities to be fundamental in how I manage myself and project myself to the world. They help me relieve my mind of maintenance. I have an idea, drop it in Todoist. Need a password, it's saved in 1Password. Wonder what a demonstrative pronoun I should use, Grammarly has it.

I do use Visual Studio Code for software development with many extensions. I'm big fans of Monokai Pro theme for the right pop of color in my dark mode UI, Prettier to smooth out developer preference, and Polacode for those crip screenshots of code.

What would be your dream setup?

For me, an idea setup would be one that help sustain me throughout the day to start and finish strong. I've had a standing desk for 8 years and I'm looking hard at an 80"x30" Phesantwood UPLIFT desk that is adjustable. I find that I need time in a chair and still desire the creativity I find while standing.

I'd love to have desktop sound to give my room some presence when listening to music. I've wanted to get a pair of Audioengine A2+ speakers for some time.

Enhancing my virtual self, I've wanted to improve my video. I've looking into using camera bodies with lenses to give my video presence crisp focus with in lense bokeh. I've settled on the Sony A6400 paired with a Sigma 16mm lens. There are some hacks to get the camera to work using a false battery that is powered by a USB charger. Pairing the camera with Elgato Key Lights, and fill lights to complete the presentation of myself would be key. Incredible hardware still needs great light to do their best.

I already have a pretty incredible setup that lets me get the job done. Improving my virtual self would have the biggest bang for buck when it comes to investing more into myself.