Zane Witherspoon

@zanewithspoon

11 Best Ethereum Development Tools to Grow Your Stack

February 14th 2017

Blockchain tech is getting chief officers hot and heavy. When it’s your turn to show them your stack, will you distress or impress?

Here’s 11 tools for building on the Ethereum blockchain

The foxy doggo chrome extension is good boy

1. Mist — nothing gets them going like pulling out your wallet

Use Mist to create wallets you won’t lose right when your Uber is pulling up

Store Ether, send transactions, deploy contracts and more with Mist. You can use the native application to play around on the blockchain or testnet while you get the hang of this whole blockchain thing. Super useful for quick transactions.

2. Geth — when it’s time to bust a node

Drop that GUI down low

When you’re ready to ditch the training wheels, switching to the command line will make you look like a real hacker. Geth can do anything Mist can do plus some important functionality like serving as an RPC endpoint to connect to the blockchain over http.

3. Parity — promote your side client to bae

It’s my parity I can cry if I want to

Parity is an ethereum client written in the new low level language Rust. Formed by Dr. Gavin Wood, the former CTO of Ethereum, this client is a fast, lightweight way to run an Ethereum node. Run Parity and hop over to localhost:8080 to play around in their web UI. Honestly, it’s a pain in the ass to install, but once it’s up and running Parity is a big upgrade from Geth.

4. MetaMask — furry fun keeps chrome interesting

The foxy doggo chrome extension is good boy

MetaMask is 🐐 If you’re building a Ðapp you actually want people to use. MetaMask support is a must-have. This little chrome extension drastically improves how easily people can interact with your Ðapp (distributed app). If you haven’t already, go download MetaMask and try it out for yourself. I’ll wait.

5. Web3.js — introduce your Ðapp to local nodes in your area

send nodes

If you want to build a Ðapp, you’re going to get very personal with the web3 library. Web3.js is going to be the interface you’ll use to interact with blockchain if you’re trying to make something people won’t hate.

6. Truffle — skip right to the good stuff

Eventually you learn to love the taste

If you’ve got a tool belt full of development tools, Truffle is your sonic screwdriver. Truffle provides the building blocks to quickly create, compile, deploy, and test blockchain apps.

7. Javascript testrpc — don’t blow your Ether prematurely

An Ether saved is an Ether earned

Before you start throwing your ether around like ones in the club 💸 try testing your code in a test blockchain. Since writing to the blockchain costs Ether, it’s a good idea to test out your smart contracts in a test blockchain spending test Ether.

8. Solc — because different languages only makes it more exciting

I’ve got a thing for byte-rs

Solidity code may be designed to look like javascript, but you still have to compile it. Solc is your translator from the smart contract language solidity to Ethereum’s byte-code.

9. Solium — chemical free solidity cleaning solution

Your mom doesn’t live in the blockchain. Don’t expect her to cleanup your mess.

Your mom doesn’t live in the blockchain. Don’t expect her to clean up your mess. Since you pay by the size for all of your writes to the blockchain, contracts included, it’s in your interest to make sure you’re not wasting your money uploading shitty code.

10.Ether.camp — you can do it online now?

this one time, at ether.camp

Microsoft has been stepping up their blockchain game. They recently started offering BaaS (Blockchain as a Service) in their Azure cloud suite and they’re bringing more heat with ether.camp, a fully fledged Ethereum IDE.

11. BlockApps — it’s not stalking if they gave you their address, right?

Every Ðapp has a fantasy of bringing in a 3rd party

Everything in the blockchain is visible by everyone, so don’t you want to take a peek? BlockApps has some API endpoints that are pretty nifty for things like checking wallet balances, writing transactions, and reading contract states. With just some addresses, you can go all Sherlock Holmes on people’s wallets.

The following are tools not on the original list but still deserve recognition

12. Embark — hop on for a ride you won’t forget

Logo coming soon

Need some structure in your Ðapp? Embark is another popular framework for building, testing, and deploying your app.

[Embark is] a framework for developing Decentralized Applications that is one of the most popular tools to develop Ethereum DApps

13. Zeppelin — practice safe smart contracts

Don’t be a DAO-ner, secure your smart contract

It’s one thing to use “password123” for your personal bank account (plz don’t), but when you’re writing a smart contract that holds other people’s money you want to be sure it’s secure. Zeppelin is library for writing secure contracts. Especially easy when you’re already working with truffle.

Special thanks goes out to Jim Huang for helping me compile the list. And thank you to Tim, Brandon, Lyndon, Casey, and Arjun for driving HappyCha.in forward and inspiring me to work harder every day.❤️

If you found this article useful or entertaining please drop a ❤️ or a share. Please comment with any feedback or tools you’d like to see added to the list.
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