So the day before yesterday I posted the Hardware edition of Get Geeky. And then I got busy. With lost passwords for kid computers (argh!) With making baked risotto for kid inbetween meal snacks. With making chicken curry for dinner. With writing posts for JustB. With scouting new contributors for JustB. With social media work. With lots of things really. I don’t know HOW I do it. Lol!
But I’m here now. Phew. With a cup of tea, and the telly on and the heater cosying me up. And I want to tell you about the software and programs and tools I use to make things easier, work and blogging wise. Let’s go!
1. Dropbox: I back up some of my photos here. I share files with family and friends. I file stuff here. I use Dropbox AND my external hard drive to keep things OFF my computer’s hard drive, safe and sound. Dropbox is free (for a certain amount of storage) and then you can invite other people to gain extra storage or alternatively purchase extra storage. Dropbox is a great online storage facility. Your virtual hard drive, so to speak!
2. Evernote: I used to use this a lot more, before I got a Mac. It’s a great program that you can install on your computer, phone or tablet. You can ‘clip’ things from the internet, organise stuff and plan things with Evernote too. Now I just tend to use the ’email this page’ option in Safari and I email stuff to myself with a meaningful title (for filing purposes!) I find that I am in and out of my email all the time, so this is a good way to keep the stuff I like neatly at hand and easy to access.
3. awesomeNote: I just started using this (and gifted it to my sister too!) You can find it in the App store. Download it to your phone and you have a syncable calendar (sync with Google or iCal), a really easy to navigate group of folders/notes, a memo pad and even more. It’s super good to have all those things in one simple to use app. I need to play with it a bit more, but at the moment I’ve got cute colour coded folders in there titled ‘Mike’s Blog Ideas’, ‘JustB To-Dos’, ‘Pip Life!’ ‘Shopping!’ and ‘General To-Dos!’ You can make your folders and notes look super cute in this app. I think you will like it too.
4. Timely: Do you use Twitter? I use Twitter a lot for JustB as well as for this blog. I use Timely when I want to schedule tweets. Timely analyses your Twitter account and will Tweet the things you schedule at the optimum time for your Twitter followers. Snazzy! Timely has a bookmarklet which sits in your browser toolbar, too. You can hit the button when you want to share a web page to Twitter and it’ll do it with ease. Super useful.
5. Hootsuite: This is a great thing to install, because you can view all your social media networks on one screen. It means you’ll never forget to reply or miss a comment, which is important if you want to have good social media manners.
6. Instagram: You know about Instagram, right?! I use it fairly frequently, although I’m a bit security conscious (i.e: Hello burglars! Here I am in Wonthaggi! Let yourself in to my empty home now!) I tend to Instagram stuff after the event! Just taking photos with my regular phone camera and then uploading them to Instagram when it suits me.
7. iBooks: I read books on my phone. In the bath. OMG. I’m reading ‘This Is How’ by Augusten Burroughs at the moment (bought via Amazon.) I love that book. I promise not to drop my phone in the bath.
8. Miscellaneous photo apps: I wrote a whole post about that on JustB : see it here. I love photo/video apps!
9. iMovie: iMovie is really easy to use. I take short videos on my phone with the Super8 app and then edit them in iMovie.
10. iView: Okay. This is not really worky. But I do need to watch stuff for work, so I think it’s okay to include it, right!
11. Google Reader: I left Google Reader for a while, but I need to keep up to date with tons of blogs for work, so I am using it again. I use it with the NEXT button so that I can see everyone’s blogs full page and lovely (instead of in that ugly reader pane!) More about the NEXT button here. You can find it under GOODIES on your Google Reader page and you totally need it if you use Google Reader!
12. Sonos: I have a Sonos wireless speaker which is linked to my phone and computer. I can listen to iTunes (or any regular old music library), Spotify, Rdio… lots of different music sources via this. Cam bought it for me and I love it.
13. Boxee: This is my media box. You know I love it. It’s networked with my computer, so I can play/view files on my (cheap, large) TV wirelessly from my hard drive, but it’s also loaded with other media sources, so I am never stuck for viewing/listening.
14. Pinterest Mobile: I love this little app. It’s super good for when you are waiting in queues or bored in the car. Pin anywhere! Wooh!
15. Facebook Mobile: I don’t use this a lot. I find it a bit annoying and simple. But I use it sometimes.
16. Audible: Okay. I am sneaking this one in for Ari. He listens to books via Audible every night when he’s going to sleep. Aw. All the kids used to listen to audio books at bedtime on cassette when they were growing up. We’ve moved to digital because the tapes kept squibbing out.
17. Rdio: I really like Rdio. It’s a music streaming service, a bit like Spotify. It seems to have all the content I search for. You might like it too.
18. Tweetdeck: I DO use this, but I’m not a huge fan. I find it hard to follow conversations on Tweetdeck, but I do like watching the columns scroll… It works well for viewing, but not so much for chatting, I find.
19. iTunes: I am really NOT a fan of iTunes. But you have to use it if you have an iDevice, pretty much. I find it cumbersome and slow. It’s not really in line with the easy efficiency of most Mac things, is it?
20. Google Documents: I LOVE Google documents. Max and I share his school work on Google Docs. I share stuff with colleagues on Google Docs. I make dorky spreadsheets and edit my calendars on Google Docs. It’s super useful and available to everyone for free. Like. (If you don’t own Microsoft Office this is a great alternative!)
21. Photoshop CS6: I use this every day. EVERY single day! I couldn’t afford to buy it outright, so I subscribe for a monthly fee via the Adobe site. I’ll tell you more about this next week, in case you want to start using Photoshop too.
22. Microsoft Office: Because it’s useful, right?!
Phew. I think that’s it for the basics. Those are the things I use a lot or at least weekly. There are so many useful productivity tools to choose from, right? I bet you’ve got some great ones too? Leave your faves in the comments below, if you would like to share!