You’re reading an article by Jay Robinson, a designer living in California.

An Interview with Jay Robinson, Web Designer at Fasturtle recently fea­tured a series of inter­views called The Setup, which ask the gen­eral ques­tion: “What do peo­ple use to get the job done?” Focus­ing on design­ers and devel­op­ers, the inter­views are short, to the point and pro­vide an inter­est­ing mix of soft­ware, hard­ware and ideal inter­ac­tion theories.

I thought I’d use the same for­mat to intro­duce myself to you. I hope you enjoy this inter­view with myself!

An Inter­view with Jay Robinson

So who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Jay Robin­son and I’m a web designer and devel­oper at Fas­tur­tle Inter­ac­tive. I’ve dab­bled in mak­ing web­sites since I was about 12, but didn’t take it seri­ously until col­lege. In col­lege I learned about web stan­dards, CSS and XHTML. At Fas­tur­tle I am work­ing hard at per­fect­ing my JavaScript and PHP skills.

Before Fas­tur­tle, I built, a blog that my girl­friend and I started when we were trav­el­ing around South­east Asia. When we came back from trav­el­ing, I did some free­lance work and built an exten­sive real estate web­site. Build­ing these sites helped me learn a lot about real world design and development.

What hard­ware are you using to get your work done?

At Fas­tur­tle I use a 24″ iMac with an addi­tional Dell mon­i­tor. The extra screen real estate pro­vides a big boost to my pro­duc­tiv­ity. At home, I have a black Mac­Book, and my first gen­er­a­tion iPhone is with me all the time (a gift from when I worked at Apple).

And what software?

When I sit down at a new Mac, there are cer­tain things I have to get out of my way. Some of these are cos­metic, but for those nig­gly tech­ni­cal bits, I rec­om­mend Secrets, by Black­tree soft­ware. It’s basi­cally a GUI for the com­mand line, so use it with care. Black­tree makes some great soft­ware for übergeeks, includ­ing Quick­sil­ver, which I don’t use, and Noc­turne and Visor, which I do.

I spend 90% of my day in Coda and Fire­fox with Fire­bug. Of course Pho­to­shop (although I hate the square icon), Fire­works, iWork and MAMP for local test­ing. I use to keep myself orga­nized and a Fluid app for our ActiveCol­lab project man­age­ment. We use Har­vest to do time track­ing, and I think it’s fan­tas­tic soft­ware. Highly recommended.

At home, iTunes is always run­ning, (play­ing some­thing from my mas­sive music col­lec­tion), and iScrob­bler is always scrob­bling to On my iPhone, I love Byline to read RSS and Instapa­per to read any­thing else. They’re the only iPhone apps I ever need.

To sync up my iMac, Mac­Book and iPhone, I need MobileMe. I am con­stantly jot­ting down To Dos, Notes, and keep­ing book­marks, on all of these devices. MobileMe makes sure I always have what I want where I need it.

When it comes to work­ing, I am very strict about what third-party soft­ware I like to use. But one app I have begun using lately is Lit­tleSnap­per, by Real­mac Soft­ware. It saves screen cap­tures in an iPhoto-like browser and has some really nice touches, but that’s a post for another time.

What would be your per­fect, ulti­mate setup?

Hard­ware is get­ting so fast, that I really couldn’t be hap­pier. What I love is unob­tru­sive soft­ware that speeds up the way you work. The iPhone is a great exam­ple of intu­itive soft­ware tied to an amaz­ing touch screen. It will be nice when Apple ships a large Multi-touch tablet that could take the place of my mousepad and mouse. Scroll with two fin­gers, rotate a doc­u­ment, or zoom in with a pinch. I could see that hap­pen­ing some time in the future.

That wraps it up for me. What appli­ca­tions do you need to work? Mac or PC? iPhone or Black­Berry? Feel free to leave your com­ments below.