I recently sat down for a question and answer session about the Apple Watch. That Q&A is up on my firm’s website, and does a pretty good job of identifying what I like and don’t like about the watch. For me, the two biggest benefits to the watch are the ability to quickly get information into my system, and to quickly review information and get on with what I’m doing. I don’t use the watch as a tool for generating work. Instead, it “greases the skids” and helps me get work done on my other devices.
I’ve been progressing through the MacSparky OmniFocus Video Field Guide, which has giving me some “ah-ha” moments. I’d already known how to use Siri and the Reminders app to get tasks into OmniFocus with my voice, but I’d fallen off the wagon and hadn’t used that method in months. When the Field Guide covered that method, it hit me like a ton of bricks – since you can add reminders to the Reminders app with your watch via Siri, you also can add tasks to OmniFocus the same way.
For the past few years, I’ve been using three note taking apps side by side. Two of the three apps have stayed the same over the years, while the third has changed a couple of times. Why three apps? It’s partially a function of the strengths and weaknesses of the apps I use, but it’s largely a function of my brain liking to keep different types of data segregated into different apps. In my system, each app serves a different purpose:
I typically don’t gush here about a service that I’ve just tried out for the first time, but I’ll make an exception for FileThis. I just read about it over on Lifehacker, and thought I’d give it a try. FileThis is a service that collects your bills in one place, so that you don’t have to sign into multiple online accounts. I just gave it a try, and this could be one of the biggest timesavers I’ve seen in years.
A recent article on Lifehacker has me wondering if I’m using Evernote all wrong. I only have two main notebooks in Evernote: Work, and Personal. There are a few other random ones that are automatically created by apps, such as the notebook that Scanner Pro, an iOS app, creates. I also have an “Inbox” notebook where notes reside until they are moved into one of the other notebooks. But by and large, all of my notes go into my two main notebooks. Am I in the minority with how I use Evernote notebooks? READ MORE
I’ve been using Mailbox on my iPhone for over a week now, and one of the features that I like the best is the ability to defer items in my email inbox. With a swipe and a tap, I can temporarily get an item out of my inbox, and set it to reappear at a future date (yes, I can hear the GTDer’s out there screeching in horror that I don’t just move it into my GTD system). I like the feature so much that I longed for the ability to do the same on my desktop at work, where we use Microsoft Outlook. The hunt was on.
Mailbox needs a monetizaton strategy. For my sake. And yours, if you use the app. READ MORE
If you follow tech news, it’s been hard to miss mention of Mailbox. Mailbox, as described in some glowing reviews, looks to be a new way to handle email, with a focus on Gmail. The general concept behind Mailbox is to help you get to inbox zero by letting you perform full and half swipes to the left and right to archive, delete, and defer messages. The current problem with Mailbox? There’s a long line to get it. READ MORE
Is voice dictation finally ready to be a viable alternative to typing? When I first used Dragon Dictation several years ago, I was impressed, but thought that it wasn’t quite ready for primetime. Whether because of limitations of the software, my own mistakes, or because of limitations of the hardware, Dragon made just enough errors to really slow me down. READ MORE
After a couple of years as a mostly satisfied Android user, I recently switched back to the iPhone (the reasons might someday be the subject of another story). I was eager to try out location-based reminders, which reminded me of a stripped down (but easier) version of Tasker on Android. I liked the idea that I could use Siri to say, “remind me to take out the trash when I get home,” and I’d have a reminder added to my list in the Reminders app. Thanks to geofencing in iOS, that reminder would automatically fire when I pulled into the driveway. READ MORE