Windows Software for 2017
With the year ending I think it's fare to say what I think is the best software of 2016, and what will be useful for 2017. Part of the emphasis is in "portable" apps. The advantage of portable programs is in that the software is not tied to a single machine, just plugin your flash drive on the computer and your programs are ready to go. There are also a few non-portable apps on the list below.
AutoHotKey. One of the best tools for remapping keyboard keys, creating macros, and even performing mouse manipulations. You can keep your commands as scripts, or you can compile to executable. Pair up AHK with Windows Task Scheduler and you have some great automation.
TinyTask Portable. This is a simple way to record and play macros. You can also compile to executable.
Mozilla Firefox Portable. Perhaps one of the few portable browsers you can use, it is nearly the perfect solution for portability.
Notepad++ Portable. Highly flexible and powerful, this is one of the better text editors you can get. It is a good tool for quickly editing anything text.
Visual Studio Code. One of the cleanest looking code editors you can get your hands on. It's packed with useful plugins, and even integrated terminals. This is the type of code editor that is useful for larger projects. D language works well with it.
SublimeText. If Microsoft's Visual Studio Code is not your thing then SublimeText might be a good alternative. There is plenty of customization and support for many computer languages, like Java!
Mozilla Thunderbird Portable. A great email client and the way to keep track of multiple email accounts under a single program. The SMTP protocols have made desktop email a joy to use.
Microsoft Excel. With support for functions, tables, sheets, password protection, and so much more, this is a multi-purpose spreadsheet package which can be used as a calendar, task manager, accounting.
Microsoft Word. Possibly the king of word processors! Once you have figured the features then it's hard to go somewhere else.
Microsoft OneNote (desktop). If you own a tablet with digitizer support then this is the best note-taking program available in the market. The desktop version is the one to get, the included Windows 10 version is simple but lacks many features and customization.
Steam. Say good bye to your life and welcome to an infinite number of virtual experiences. Steam is the digital locker for your PC games. The sales are great!
INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT ENVIRONMENT (IDE)
CodeBlocks with MinGW. If C/C++ is what you wish to program then CodeBlocks is one of the lightest and functional IDEs you can have.
Microsoft Mathematics. If you need to solve for x in some simple or complex equation then MS Mathematics can help you out.
VLC Media Player Portable. The best video and music player you can get. The number of media formats can support is just simply amazing.
gPodder Portable. You can't go wrong with this simple podcast app.
PickPick Portable. A tray-based screen capture tool that is more than that -- it has a color picker, various rulers, magnifier, etc.
BENQ Display Pilot. The software allows you to partition monitors into areas. You can then place your programs in these areas with a few clicks. The more computer monitors you have, or if a single monitor is large enough, the more need you will have in partitioning your screen space. The software was designed with particular BenQ monitors in mind, however the software works regardless of the monitor brand -- although not always perfectly.
NTWind VistaSwitcher. This is an excellent Alt+Tab replacement tool. It should facilitate and speed up the process of switching apps.