Tech Corner: 3 Apps I Can’t Live Without
EACE Blog contribution by Rachel Wobrak, Program Director, University of Maryland’s University Career Center & The President’s Promise
For the purposes of this blog post, these are three apps that help my productivity and keep me organized. Obviously, there are a ton of apps and websites I could mention here, but these three I use every day; well two I use every day and a new one I just discovered that I think will quickly fit that description. A big reason I like all three of these is because they can easily be used across multiple devices. All have web versions and app versions for your phone. I find they’re all a great way to keep organized across multiple devices when at work, home or on the go. You can share things from your home or work computer with your phone or ipad, vice versa or any combination. Another big plus…all have free versions that get a lot done. Some of these may not be new to you, but I will briefly sing their praises here.
If you’re like me and love a good to-do list, this is an app to pay attention to. It works in an outline format, very simple. You won’t get pretty graphics or colors. It is, quite simply, a white screen with black type, but it’s great for managing home and work projects. You can easily collapse topics or zoom in to see only what you want to see at any given time. You can have separate categories for work and home and as many subcategories and levels of indentation and bullet points under each that you’d like. They’ve got a really great tutorial video.
It’s really helpful when managing tasks or ideas. I’ve already started brainstorming programs I want to put together over the next academic year and have bullets underneath each for people I need to talk to, tasks to complete, and things to think about over the summer as I begin planning these programs.
I’ve used Dropbox for a number of years now. I know there are a ton of different things you can do with it and I’m probably a more basic user, but still feel I use it a lot. It’s an app to store and share
files, pictures, etc. It’s great to be able to access certain files at home, work and on my phone. I also put my most important documents there as a backup cloud storage. You get 2GB for free and by referring people you can earn more free space. You can also always pay for more space. I really like that I can have pictures I take on my phone automatically back up to my Dropbox account until I have the time to back them up on my home computer or external hard drive.
Dropbox is great for sharing files and contributing to work with another person. You can create a folder and share only its contents or simply share one document. It’s also great if I start a project on one computer and plan to finish it up or need to send it from another computer. For example an EACE blog post I might have started on my personal laptop but put finishing touches and submitted from my work computer.
This is quickly becoming my new favorite app. When answering email or scrolling through Facebook or Twitter on my phone, I often find myself opening a new window in my phone’s browser when I find an article or website that I want to read. Sometimes I don’t have time to read it in that moment and don’t want to forget to come back to it. This turns into a long, long list of tabs on my phone’s browser or an email to myself with a link to open later. Pocket is my new answer. I can move them out of my browser, store them in one place (accessible by any of my devices) and tag them to make the list easier to sift through. There is an extension to create a button right on your browser on your computer or you can download the app to your phone and allow your phone’s browser to integrate and save directly to Pocket instead of opening too many tabs. I only just put it on my computer and phone yesterday and already I’ve found I’m using it a ton. I’m a big Pinterest user for articles, ideas or pictures I want to keep and store in specific boards for a longer period of time, but I find this is the perfect answer to articles I want to keep temporarily to easily find again later when I have a moment.
I’d love to hear what apps or websites work for you or if you have a different way you use these same apps. Please list them in the comments below or feel free to reach out to me on twitter. I love to learn about a good tool/resource.
Idea for this blog borrowed from: http://www.prdaily.com/Main/Articles/18507.aspx
Rachel Wobrak has been a Program Director at the University Career Center & The President’s Promise since 2010. She works with the College of Computer, Mathematical & Natural Sciences. She assists with the office’s social media presence by managing the Center’s Pinterest account. She’s a member of the EACE Technology Committee. Rachel has her MEd from the University of Florida in Student Personnel in Higher Education and her BA from the University of Maryland in Classics (proof you can find a great career with any major). Please feel free to connect with her on Twitter or LinkedIn.