Category archive - Apps

GTasks – Increase your Productivity with this App

Prioritize and be Efficient with G TasksGTasks probably ranks in my top 5 as far as Apps that I use the most on my smart phone (I have the Droid X running the Android operating system). If you are a Google person in general, like I am, then you are all ready familiar with Google Tasks that you can use when you are in Gmail. It’s that bar at the bottom that you activate which is basically a To-Do list, or more appropriately a Task List.

Google Tasks is great because it is a virtual to do list which you always have with you. Anytime you are on gmail you have a the bar of what you need to get done right there. You can minimize it so there is just a bar there (which frees up the screen when writing emails), or expand it and have a small window right there on the screen. You can also popout the whole thing to be it’s own tab full screen.

Why Download GTasks?

GTasks is the smartphone app that links directly to Google Tasks. You can create lists specific to your phone, or you can just look at the same list that you have going on Google Tasks. That’s what I always do, just one big list, which IĀ prioritizeĀ and knock out each day.

There are a ton of to do lists out there but for me GTasks is the only one you need for one very specific reason. You can set dates when the task need to be complete and set alarms as well. So you might add an item that has to be done by next Wednesday. After a couple days it could get lost in the shuffle with many other tasks, but if you set an alarm it’ll pop up so you don’t forget.

The other great function that I like a lot is you can make the tasks and reminders recurring. So for instance, I have to put my garbage out on Monday night for Tuesday morning pick up. I set a weekly recurring task for 8:30p to take out the trash. I would forget every week if not for Gtasks! I put the cans out by the road and I click the check for done. Then next week it’ll remind me again.

 

So download GTasks and in a few mins you’ll all ready have the hang of it. Just the process of listing what you need to get done will help to make sure you aren’t forgetting things. Then working with GTasks as the day goes on will help you prioritize and be much more efficient. Before you know it you’ll be ahead of schedule…who would have thought that would be possible?!

Evernote App

Phone AppThere are tons of phone apps out there that will help you keep track of your life but one of my favorites is Evernote. At its core it is essentially an app that will let you quickly jot down a note about something you are thinking about and don’t want to forget about. It happens to me all the time, I’m thinking and come up with what I think is a really great idea. If I don’t write it down then I know I’ll never remember it. That’s when I bring up Evernote on my Droid phone.

So while the core function of Evernote is to jot down ideas so you don’t forget them, it’s has been expanded to be so much more then that! To start with it’s much larger then an average app that just runs on your smart phone. It can be accessed on a web browser on your laptop or on your tablet, including the Ipad. So where ever you are and whatever you are doing to can take down your note, or access the notes you’ve taken once you now have the free time to act on your great idea.

Just to be clean though Evernote is not at all just a text based note taker. You can clip out parts of web pages (how often do you come up with a great idea while you are surfing?). You can attach pictures to your notes as well. You can even attach files as well.

Another cool aspect of Evernote is that you can organize all these ideas and notes is a really smooth way. You can have your notes be grouped under notebooks so that you can keep notes about certain subjects all together.

I really like that on my Droid I can snap a quick picture and then make it an Evernote and add some text to remind me what I think was so important about that picture and how it relates to what I was thinking about. Evernote also offers a built in picture to text reader. In other words if there is text in a picture you take and make a note, Evernote will convert that to searchable text. To me if you think visually and use the picture functionality this is invaluable! The example I saw showed a pictured of someone wearing an “I heart NY” tee shirt. They then entered the search term “NY”, and Evernote was able to find that picture and include that note in the search results. Awesome stuff!

Overall I think Evernote is really getting very popular and powerful. I got an email the other day which was an overall Evernote update. They have user groups run by power users whose goal is to show how Evernote can be used in new and expanded ways to make you life easier!

Cell Phone Software

When it comes to software for cell phones there are really two main areas that you are talking about. One is the operating system which is the software which makes you phone run and handles main functionality. The other main area when it comes to software are the apps that you can download and allows you phone to do any number of specialized functions from games, to tracking, to books, and many more.

Smart Phones

First it’s important to note that we are talking about what have been come to be knows as smart phones. Sure all cell phones have some kind of software that is running them and are their operating system, but once you get your phone it is what it is. The software for a cell phone is really only interesting if you can customize it and change it. If you can’t do anything with it then why bother thinking about it.

Operating Systems

When it comes to operating systems you are a bit limited by what phone/carrier you choose. Really there are only two real operating system choices these days. You are either going with the Iphone which is an Apply product and comes with their operating system, or you are going with an Android powered phone which is a Google operating system. One key difference is that Apple make the Iphone and the operating system. Google has going a different route where they make the operating system and allow manufacturers to use it. Because of this there are many more phones that run Android. However Iphone was first and has something of a cult following.

Periodically phones will push out an update to the operating systems. This is often to fix known bugs, but it could also be adding new functionality as well. If you know there is a new released OS update you can usually look on the menus on your phone and find where you can download it right away. However if you don nothing the phone manufacturer/carrier will push the update out eventually and you’ll get it that way.

Smart Phone Apps

Apps really really are the sexy software when it comes to smart phones. Really it’s apps that have made the smart phones so popular and so much more like a computer in your pocket then just a phone.

Both Apple and Google went with a similar theory in that they opened up their OS to third party programmers to be able to create apps for end users of the smart phones. Apple keeps a little tighter control on what actually becomes available to end users by screening the apps and offering them through the App store (this is a format they are very used with dominating with their experience with Itunes). Google tends to micro manage quite a bit less. They have their own “store” on the Android phones, but you are also able to download from websites and other outside sources.

 

So make sure to check back to this blog often as we’ll be reviewing and suggesting apps that are either fun, functional, or increase your productivity!