I figured I’d list the tools, plug-ins, and apps I use to keep my act together. Here’s a list of the more important ones.
- Google Docs– Google Drive: Acquia is a Google Docs driven company (thank God). If you suffer in the land of Lotus Notes or Microsoft Outlook, there is hope. Change jobs and join a company that uses Google services and your life will be better. I’m Google-centric even though I own a Microsoft Surface. I despise Apple (long rant, but I hate Apple products). In this day and age I guess there are three choices: Google, Apple or Microsoft. I tried to be in love with Microsoft’s Office 360 and OneDrive, but Acquia is on Google, my consulting clients are embracing it, I own an Android phone and an Android tablet so Google it is.
- Dropbox – long time fan. Use it for keeping my stuff synched up across devices and sharing with friends.
- Evernote – paired with a Fujirsu ScanSnap scanner, I use Evernote for storing important personal documents (mooring permits, car insurance policies, etc.) and love the integration with the New York Time’s Cooking section recipe box. I use Evernote on the boat by taking pictures with my phone of oil filters, navigational lights, drive belts, etc.. so when I am at West Marine I know exactly what to get.
- Any.do – task and list manager. I especially love the integration with my new Amazon Echo. It makes it easy to just say, “Alexa. Add review blog post to my personal to-do list” and then have it appear on Any.do’s app on the phone or Chrome browser plug in. It’s a great reminder for everything that clutters up my “get shit done” lists.
- Simplenote – I take tons of notes. Simplenote, a freebie from Automattic, parent of WordPress, is a very nice tool. Microsoft One Note also fits the bill at times (see below).
- Smart Recorder – Android app which I use to record interviews. I get a file which I then send off to a transcription service, two days later I have a transcript.
- Alarm Clock Pro – Android app so I won’t oversleep.
- Business Calendar – replacement app for the default Google calendar on my HTC 10. Worth the money.
- TripIt Pro – big fan of this for managing travel plans. I was tipped off to it by Kevin Kelly’s Cool Tools and love how it simply works intelligently by watching my inbox for travel confirmations and then pulls them into the app..
- Microsoft One Note – I like OneNote and have been a fan off and on since it first appeared. The “record meeting” capability is crucial to me in some meetings at work. I use One Note across all my devices to keep track of meetings.
It’s worth noting I like some of these things so much I will actually pay for premium levels from Dropbox, Evernote, Any.do., TripIt, and other stuff. I also keep a subscription to the Microsoft Office suite — there are times when I need to really get detailed and nothing but the real thing — Word, Powerpoint, Excel — will do.
There’s a lot of stuff I’ve tried and rejected. Example: Nuance’s Dragon NaturallySpeaking paired with a little Sony IC voice recorder never worked as hoped and I’ve never seen a more obnoxious spammy company like Nuance.