Apps for download, more and more!
I must confess … I am an iPad app junkie. I download more apps than I can possibly use. Yet I’m still addicted to the Saturday morning exploration … as long as it’s free, what the heck, give it a try! From productivity and note-taking applications to silly word games (good brainteasers); or new photography apps with special effects or tricks; or even useful business-oriented apps, they all present new possibilities.
May I share a few with you? Those are just a few of my folders on the right. And yes, folders help a lot when you keep adding new apps!
Find the free ones
First, the best tool for surfing for free apps (and prices change regularly) is an app called “AppShopper.” It provides an interface that allows you to click a category — “price” (click free) and then click “price drops.” You can also choose between universal, iPad or iPhone. Categories include photography, productivity, games, entertainment, books, business. Choose your category, choose “price drop” and “free” and you’re in business. Endless scrolling and exploring!
Today I discovered a couple of intriguing looking word games — Prose w/Bros and Quoth. There are also a couple of memory games — Duplicity and Memdurance. All are still to be tested. However, a word scramble game (always a good brain exercise) I found a few weeks ago — Jambalaya — has already eaten up some down time.
Down to business
That’s the fun stuff, now to the serious business tools. One great tool I have discovered is Polkast. You install it on both your PC and the iPad, and once they’ve synced, you can easily pull files — any files — from your PC to your iPad and back again. Very simple to use and works great, from Word files to photos.
For business reference and inspiration, I uncovered some Vooks by Seth Godin and Tom Peters. There’s also one by Gary Vaynerchuk. Vooks incorporate video clips with online books.
For marketing specifics, I have also downloaded the ad-ology Marketing Forecast. Good reference. We subscribe to their service, but this overview app is free. They compile marketing, advertising and audience research stats, reports and profiles. Another interesting one is Infographics — providing a compilation of interesting stats in different categories in the form of infographics.
A useful iPhone app is the Harvard Business Review Management Tip of the Day. Lots of good ideas condensed into daily nuggets. Of course the TED Conference Guides are valuable, and free.
Presentations? Of course Keynote is excellent (not free). It’s easy to use and elegant. There’s also the Prezi Viewer, that departs from the linear PowerPoint presentation, but has a bit of a learning curve. Templates Pro provides some nice looking templates for Keynote. PresenterPro is also a well-designed, instructional tool to creating better presentations.
I have tried many different notepad style applications. Some include audio so you can record a presentation or meeting while taking notes. Some include sketching or handwriting recognition. Some allow you to change fonts, incorporate written comments with typed text and change colors.
I have to admit, I have not mastered (nor do I wish to) handwriting on an iPad. I type too fast and I find it awkward and frustrating to write on the screen.
From that point of view I like Chapters for note-taking. It allows different sections (chapters) I can use for each client and quickly switches between views. MagicalPad is another I’m just starting to play with. It has a number of templates for organized lists and I like the look of the interface. Moleskine is pretty cool for emulating the famous little notebooks, and the icons and organization structure are well designed, but I don’t find it as easy to use. All of them take some practice to learn the interface and be able to use them easily.
Then there’s the fun stuff
The apps I continue to use to support my commitment to food are: Epicurious, for recipe searching and ideas; and Urban Spoon, to find local restaurants with descriptions and ratings. Urban Spoon hasn’t failed yet, to find something good nearby.
The Mario Cooks app (Mario Batali) is also excellent, as video helps to demonstrate his culinary delights. I haven’t quite found the right app to use for my own recipes, though I’ve tried out PepperPlate and Your Recipes.
Of course, there’s so much more. There are the apps to keep track of your wine collection, or to help you pick out a wine. Or the many options to have fun with your photos or do some serious editing and retouching. (The photos inserted here have been run through Instagram, a favorite.) But I’ll stop there. Perhaps that’s another post!
Those are a few ideas, for the fun times, down-time entertainment, the business times and the gotta-get-it-done times. What apps are you using the most? Which ones have worked best for you for a specific situation? Let me know. I’m always interested in exploring new options, especially if they’re free!