This is something different for Mac.AppStorm: not a review of an app, but of a book about an app. The book is Kourosh Dini’s Creating Flow with Omnifocus. Dr Dini, a psychiatrist, musician, and author, has written regular blog posts about using OmniFocus, the Omni Group’s brilliant, but often daunting, task management app. Creating Flow… brings together a number of his previous posts, and builds them into a thorough overview of working with the app, as well as offering suggestions for a comprehensive system for approaching task management using OmniFocus.
I’ve read many blog posts and essays on using the app, and watched various screencasts, each of which has had some influence on the system that I have come to use. I became aware of Creating Flow… several months ago, and finally decided I wanted to read it and see if it could teach me anything new about OmniFocus. Join me after the jump for an overview of the book.
When I first started writing for Appstorm, I immediately grabbed a copy of MarsEdit, since I had read such great things (on AppStorm) and finally had a reason to use it. I know HTML, but I hate looking at all those tags when I’m writing, so I did most of my work in Rich Text mode, then switched it to HTML, and copied into WordPress. It wasn’t a bad workflow, but it wasn’t ideal. When I reviewed ByWord, I got hooked on the minimal writing environment, and searched for a way to integrate it into my workflow.
From ByWord documentation, I learned about the infinitely useful Markdown syntax, which I’d previously dismissed as something too geeky-sounding to try. Markdown is two things: a standardized plain-text writing syntax, and a tool for converting plain text into HTML. With limited knowledge of HTML, writers can type out content in a natural markup-free environment, then easily convert their text into properly encoded HTML. Marked is a lightweight, inexpensive app that lets you preview the HTML output of your document as you’re writing. In this article, I’m going to go over some of the basics of Markdown, and demonstrate how Marked can contribute to an efficient blogging workflow.
Producteev has long been one of my favorite web-based task management solutions. Before Producteev, there were fully-featured GTD solutions and there were free solutions, and the two almost never overlapped.
Then Producteev came along providing free web and iPhone apps, automatic task syncing, multiple workspaces, due dates, labels, and a lot more. The one thing that it has always lacked is a native Mac app. That problem was remedied earlier this week. Let’s take a look.
Apple products have long been hailed as great tools for education. It hasn’t been too long since I was a student myself, and even since then some of my favorite Mac software has been apps aimed at students. Because developers see the market for this, students have access to great apps like iProcrastinate for task management, Papers for project management, and even Schoolhouse for all-in-one student productivity. If your academic app arsenal lacks a good note-taking app, Dear Panda aims to fill that gap with CourseNotes.
CourseNotes is a lightweight, yet robust note-taking app for students. It is designed to eliminate the hassle of keeping track of your notes by organizing them into subjects and sessions, as well as making them fully searchable. CourseNotes also has a companion iPad app that syncs with the Mac counterpart, but more on that later.
In recent years e-books have experienced a notable surge in popularity. Much of this can be attributed to devices such as Amazon’s Kindle and Apple’s iPad, which have seen a huge rise in popularity over recent years and seem to always be in those “top 10 gadget lists”. Amazon now sells more Kindle-format books than standard paper copies and the research and advisory firm mediaIDEAS forecasted that e-book readers are set to become a $25 billion market by the year 2020.
So with all these e-books floating around, you’ll need a way to manage them, right? Well, that’s where Calibre comes in. Think of it as iTunes for your e-books. Although e-book readers such as the Kindle provide their own software, it is a bit basic and you can only read books purchased from the Kindle store.
Calibre allows you to categorize all your books, convert them into different formats and upload them to your device. Although it won’t win any awards for its looks, the old adage is true, “Don’t judge a book by its cover” (or should that be e-book? Sorry, bad joke). Calibre is, to use the age-old comparison, iTunes for your e-books. Read on to find out why.
When it comes to apps in the getting things done (GTD) realm, OmniFocus stands head and shoulders above the rest. It’s powerful, it’s flexible and it can sync with the iPad and iPhone versions as well. But as great as it is — and we’ve already told you that it’s pretty cool — it can still use a few tweaks here and there to make it a bit more workable.
So with that it mind, let’s take a few moments to share a few tips and tricks for OmniFocus. You may not need all of them, but if just one tip makes you more productive, then it’s worth it, right?
When you open up your computer to get to work, you open up a world of distractions. As a writer, you could just pick up pen and paper, and forgo the entire digital realm – until, that is, you have to type up what you’ve written and double your workload. Minimalist writing apps like Byword attempt to recreate the simplicity of the pen-and-paper experience while supplying the benefits of digital convenience.
Whether or not these apps are necessary is itself a whole argument (Kevin Whipps’ article proved that people are very passionate about their workflows) but love them or hate them, how does ByWord stack up? Read on to find out whether it’s worth giving a try!
These days, there are a vast number of apps that aim to help you handle your tasks and get things done. Most of them, however, have far too many features that nobody would ever use, and cost too much for the ordinary consumer. People don’t need a huge interface full of icons, they just want a quick way to jot down their tasks for the day.
Todoozle could well be the solution. With a simple and intuitive interface, it couldn’t be easier to use. But does too much simplicity compromise its functionality, or is less really more? Read on to find out.
The productivity app space yields what can only be described as an embarrassment of riches these days, but is there something for everyone amongst the goods?
iProcrastinate is a productivity/to do list app clearly geared toward students. It appears to be a one man show over at craigotis.com, but the results seem solid. My first experience for iProcrastinate was way back before a major UI redesign, and (I believe) while the app was originally available for the first generation jailbroken iPod touch.
The app has come a long way since then, but what does it have to offer in the ever expanding sea of productivity tools?