A Toolkit for Product Managers

Managing a product in an agile environment is like juggling flaming torches on a unicycle crossing a trapeze line being yanked by a maniacal clown. It’s fast, chaotic and demands relentless focus. Luckily for us, in 2017, there is a proliferation of tools (most of them free or at least freemium) that help to tame the chaos.

Unfortunately, a parallel phenomena nowadays is tool overload. A feast of options, along with the usual content marketing noise by people promoting their own products often makes people give up in despair and go back to using Word, Excel and Powerpoint (which are pretty awesome too if used properly).

Here’s the list of tools I use in my day job as an actual Product Manager.

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3 Awesome Tools for Product Managers

I try my best to keep myself informed about beautiful, functional new products that are introduced to the market everyday. As a product manager, this serves as a useful barometer on the pulse of design and technology but I admit that I just love the process of discovery in itself.

Unfortunately, nowadays recommendations on a lot of the so-called unbiased or community based websites turn out to be nothing more than content marketing inserts like this.

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Discovering Product Management | My Calling

I have always envied people who know exactly what they want to achieve in life. You know the people I’m talking about. People who have known from a very young age who they are and what they will do. It gives your life a purpose. Besides if you want to excel at something, the more time you put in the better.

Think of the legendary 10,000 hours of practice required for mastering anything. If you started practicing when you were 13, 15 or 20 you are off to quite the head start.

I have never had that unshakeable conviction. That used to be a big let-down for me. Like I was missing out…falling behind. That is until a few months back, when I realized in a sudden blinding flash (well actually it was over a couple of weeks) what my calling was.

I am a product manager. A What? A Product Manager.

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My Beautiful Prompt | Using Prezto & ZSH

From xkcd

I first learned to take baby steps on the command line about two years ago as I had to diagnose problems with remote installations of the IIoT application my team was building. But it wasn’t until a few months back when I switched to Ubuntu as my primary operating system that I truly appreaciated the power and awesomeness that a command line puts at the tips of your fingers.

Since then, I’ve tried my best to use the keyboard whenever my fingers were twitching to reach the mouse/touchpad.

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Connect To Your Computer From Anywhere

As part of my job as product developer for everSENSE I sometimes need to diagnose problems at remote servers. My preffered way is to take access via SSH. But in many places, the server is behind a NAT router so I have to resort to the inelegant method of using Teamviewer. Don’t get me wrong. Teamviewer is a wonderful application. But once you have gotten used to the power and speed of shells, nothing else can have the same satisfaction.

I recently (a few weeks back) discovered that there is actually a way, that you can connect to a computer behind a NAT/firewall from any other computer. Its simple and elegant and can be done in under 5 minutes.

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