Copyright © 2014, J. R. Goodenough


Software I use

I am a great believer in not paying for software when I don’t have to. I don’t mean pirating, of course: there is a great deal of OpenSource software out there which is as good as, and sometimes better than, the paid-for stuff.


I don't have any special firewall software. I just rely on the built-in Windows 7 firewall and the fact that I am behind a router anyway.

Software development

Much of my software is developed using Microsoft Visual C++. This is not cheap, but I have used versions of it for years and bought it when I was running my own business. I recently upgraded to Visual Studio 2010 Professional from V6.0, which I used to use and is no longer compatible with current Microsoft operating systems. Thanks to those who have donated, which has helped a lot with this purchase.

If I was starting out again, I would use Java, since it’s a better language in my opinion and also platform-independent. The Android version of Spine is written in Java, ported from the original Visual C++ PC version. It’s built on the Eclipse Java platform.


I use Avast! which is free for home use and well maintained. It updates automatically on average once a day. I recommend it to anyone who asks (or even if they don’t).


My browser of choice is Google Chrome. I have IE11 of course, but only use it when I have to.

I used to use Firefox, but I started having problems with it and find Chrome better suits my needs


I use Thunderbird as my email client. It comes from the Mozilla stable, like Firefox.


I have written a journey booking system for a local voluntary organisation, which is browser based and written in the PHP language. For this I use the DevPHP IDE (Integrated Development Environment).

Image viewer

There’s only one for me: IrfanView. Many of the images on this site were re-sized and processed using this excellent little product. You can’t use it for editing images, however, apart from adding text - I use MS Paint for that.

Office software

Rather than pay a fortune for a well-known Office package, I use the free OpenSource Libre Office, which I have found is pretty much completely compatible. As well as the default Open Document Format, it will save in Microsoft compatible formats (.doc, .xls etc.)

FTP agent

I need FTP to transfer stuff to and from my web site. FileZilla is OpenSource and very easy to use.

Web development

I use Serif’s WebPlus X6, having upgraded through various intermediate versions from WebPlus 10, which I used originally. It ‘s a sophisticated tool that does everything I need to do at a fraction of the price of  the professional stuff. I particularly like the new lightbox feature which you may notice I have used on this updated site!