Earlier this year, we sat down with Dan O’Leary to chat about his experiences with Pieces. “As a full-time pilot, I have other things. I'm a father, I'm redoing a bathroom, my time is limited,” explains Dan, a developer and pilot who is deeply interested in Artificial Intelligence (AI). “I want to use AI to make my work more efficient.”
Dan’s Tech Stack:
- Languages: Swift
- IDEs: Xcode
- Other tools: Pieces, Linear, Fork
Saving Learning Materials
Currently, Dan is building a fuel-tracking app for professional pilots. While he codes, he uses Pieces to keep track of solutions to new challenges. “I'd never created an API endpoint, but I wanted an API to integrate with accounting software. I know, of course, it's possible. So, I sat down with a friend of mine and he wrote a little playground, a block of code that is an example of how to create an endpoint. So specifically, instead of having that in an Xcode playground—which to me, isn't very searchable— I put that in Pieces.”
Nearly every developer can leverage AI to make work more efficient, but the details of how AI can help vary for everyone. For Dan, Pieces’ AI features make noticeable differences in how well he uses his time.
Combatting Context Switching
“I seem to always find myself working with dates and date comparisons,” says Dan. “Date comparisons and working with time is strangely complicated, so I've got a collection of code that helps me deal with sorting and comparing time. When I fall into the trap of working with dates again, I've forgotten. I need to go back and open up my toolbox and look for what I need to do. When you're context switching like that, it's too hard to just memorize everything, and I don't think it's reasonable to expect a developer to do that.”
Dan’s favorite tool for easing that challenging context switching is the Pieces desktop app. “Having a tool in your workflow that you can search is super handy for me. Pieces has this automatic tagging for the frameworks and what the code actually does— It just speeds up what I'm looking for and knowing what I have, because maybe I don't have a block of code that does [what I need]. Okay, well, I won't waste my time looking for something that I don't have.”
A snippet’s metadata is another huge time saver for Dan, especially because Pieces auto-generates nearly all of it. “I can't think of any other platform I've used that I've had my searchable tags for my code. So, if you've even [saved code from] ChatGPT once, being able to search for it? The fact that Pieces auto-generates this stuff, that blew me away.”
When chatting with Dan about Pieces, it’s clear that the ability to store his code snippets is not the only reason he enjoys using the tool. While searchability, auto-generated tags, and related links are all important, Dan keeps using Pieces because it truly fits into his workflow.
“What I've seen Pieces do is the best integration to my daily life that I have yet to see from any sort of machine learning and artificial intelligence [tool],” says Dan. “I mean, it seems inevitable, but you're the first ones that I've seen doing it. That's why when I tweeted it out, I was like, ‘How haven't I heard about this yet? Is nobody talking about this? ‘Cause this is crazy.’”
Experience it for yourself at pieces.app.