Since my jobs are mostly internet based, I am always looking for tools and applications to simplify things. I'm not a big user of tech when it comes to productivity; I find I much prefer good old pen and paper for planning, and to-do lists, but these 10 tools are things that make my life and routines simpler.
1. Pinterest - Yes I know. It can be a big time suck. But it has really helped me to keep up much better with my creative plans. It has also been very instrumental in my meal planning. I love that I can create specific project boards to keep me focused. Sure I hop on there sometimes and pin all the pretty things willy nilly (Pin All the Things!), but the site has helped me plan parties, plan Christmas, as well as organise and decorate my house too.
2. Delicious - old school bookmarking. As much as I love the visual bookmarking (see above), good old fashioned bookmarking is indispensable to me for my blogging work on Craft Gossip. I use Delicious to save and organise all the sites I feature every day Monday to Friday. The main appeal is that I can keep all of that private. (Pinterest only just now included private boards, and you can only have three of them.) Plus, it is way less distracting to look at text links!
3. Morning Coffee. This is a plug-in for Firefox that will open specific sites you set on specific days. So for instance if you check a certain site on Mondays you can have Firefox automatically go to that site when it opens. And so on. I've been using this one for about three years now and I love it. (if you use Chrome there is a similar add-on called Daily Links)
4. Dropbox - I've actually been using Dropbox for a few years too. It's a cloud storage/file sharing application. What took it to the next level for me this year was adding the app to my cellphone at a friend's recommendation. It will automatically sync all my files (i.e. photos) to my Dropbox folder so that I have access to them on my PC.
5. Online Conversion - Since I live between worlds, I use this site a lot for converting between metric and Imperial quantities. A must-have if you want to use recipes from all over the world.
7. Instaport.me - This tool is perfect for exporting your Instagram photos. It creates a .zip file you can download. You can set options for which photos you want depending, for example, on the date taken.
8. LastPass - This one is excellent if like me you can never remember the super complicated secure passwords you come up with. It sets up a vault to store all your passwords and then you can fill in Login forms with one click. I use it for everything except things I am paranoid about like Paypal or banking sites.
9. If This Then That (IFTTT) - I've been testing this one out for several weeks and am finding it more and more indispensable. It's a tool you can use to set up online "recipes" that complete one action once another has been done. For example I have one recipe set up to put all my Fat Mum Slim Photo a Day Photos into a monthly folder on Facebook. It will grab my photo tagged with #fmsphotoaday and post it to Facebook for me. It's pretty neat, saves me time, and I can't wait to explore it more and come up with more time saving recipes.
10. Gmail - the beloved of productivity gurus, I gotta give it it's due. It saves me a lot of inbox stress. I love how I can archive everything and have an empty in-box. I love how you can easily follow an e-mail discussion, and that even an archived e-mail will pop back up into the in-box if someone else replies to it. After fighting with yahoo mail to clean out my inbox recently, I am even more in love with the ease that gmail has.
Do you have any go-to online tools or apps?