What I Use These Days
It has been a while since I reviewed the apps that I use the most. My tools have changed a little, too, but just the model number. My phone, however, keeps growing in its percentage of my usage while my Mac is only used once or twice a week. My tools are an iPhone 7 (124GB), an iPad Pro (9.75 x 124GB x Apple Pen), and a 2014 MacBook Pro.
The apps I use have changed and are mostly responsible for my greater dependence on the iPhone.
A major reason for this shift is the Bear writing app. I use Bear all day long, and it works just as well on the iPhone as the iPad or Mac. If you are wondering about typing on the iPhone, it is hunt and peck, greatly supplemented by predictive text and selected shortcuts. I must ‘think’ the way I type because I rarely switch from iPhone to iPad or Mac for typing. And yes, I learned touch typing long enough ago to be quite proficient.
These are the apps that I use the most. You can link to the app in most cases to find out more. I have listed which platforms I use them on. And I’ve added a few words about each app. At the bottom are links to previous roundups of my apps.
Bear (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Bear is my go-to app. I wrote about it here. Bear has taken the place of Evernote and Basecamp for me. This is feasible because I work alone and don’t need the connectivity - usually. I use Bear to record ideas, outline projects, track small projects, plan blog posts, mock-up blog posts, etc.
Todoist (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Todoist is a really nice task manager. I use Todoist for two things. 1] all tasks that have a due date and/or repeats. 2] Developing the list of tasks for a process or project. I use Todoist several times every day. More about TO-DO lists here.
Knack (iPad, Mac)
Knack is the software that I use to build MyCorbu. I don’t know of anything else that can do this as well. This app really needs the Mac, but I use it a lot on the iPad to review, and to make minor changes. I expect it to work better on the iPad when iOS 11 comes out.
MyCorbu (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
This is my timekeeping app, and, yes, I use it every day to record time just like I needed to record time. I works marginally on the iPhone, but it is doable with a little hand-holding. I works just fine in the iPad browser, and of course in any modern browser on a computer.
Cardflow is an amazing app for the iPad. Anything that I might have done on paper in the past is now done with Cardflow. All the tricky things that need thinking through with MyCorbu get sketched out first in Cardflow. It is a must have if you can’t think without a pencil in your hand. An Apple Pencil in this case. I have described it better here.
Weebly (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Of course, Weebly is the app that I have been using since about 2010 to build websites and publish blogs. It is dead simple to use. It may be the only free choice for trying your hand at this type of publishing. You will probably want a paid version eventually.
Dropbox (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Dropbox is my daily file storage solution. Long term storage goes into Apple’s iCloud Drive. A few spreadsheets and contact lists go into Google Drive. But for easy access to find or view a file I don’t think you can beat Dropbox.
Canva (iPad, Mac)
Canva is my primary graphic creation tool. You can read about it here and here. Canva has replaced several photo apps that I used. It works reasonably well on the iPad, but more real estate is always nice when working on graphics.
Preview (MacBook Pro)
The Preview app in the Apple OS gets a mention here because changing an image’s dimensions, file type, or file size is extremely easy with Preview. I used to use three other apps until I learned that Preview did it all.
Trello (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Trello is still my preferred way to plan a large project. I have written a lot about Trello.
Buffer (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Buffer helps with Twitter. I am getting more and more lukewarm about Twitter’s value for business; but, as long as I tweet, Buffer makes the time commitment palatable. I spend $10/mo for the ‘Awesome’ plan so that I can schedule 100 tweets at a time.
BulkBuffer should be part of Buffer. It is a free tool that let’s you upload those 100 tweets at a time in seconds rather than 45 minutes of copy/paste.
MailChimp (iPhone, iPad, Mac)
Subscribers get my blogs delivered to their mailbox thanks to MailChimp. At my level of use, MailChimp is free. When I get there, I will be happy to go to a paid account.
The last time I did this review in the summer of 2014, I had 59 ‘favorites’. I think I was being generous with the term. Nowadays because of the time that I spend on MyCorbu, I am more streamlined in my blog production. Of the 13 apps mentioned here, only five were on the list of 59. The rest didn’t exist, I didn’t know they existed, or I hadn’t realized their potential.
Here are my Past Posts on apps:
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