Eric Magnuson

My unique intersection of cooperation, sustainable business and local living economies.

Until I re-prioritize blog publishing, all my contributions to the noise can be found on Twitter.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Top 6 Productivity Applications for 2008

At the end of the year I get to thinking about all the fine applications that helped me get where I am today... December 28th. Now, I don't spend a ton of time researching, testing and thinking about software for my MacBook, however I use it just about every damn day. It is an indispensable tool in my daily pursuit of success. Good thing I hang out with many people who spend more time than I looking for useful software. Keep in mind, my perspective on what software is useful is tinged by what I do. Mostly I communicate with clients and my team and track things for a living. Here is my top 6 list for 2008!

6. 1Password - It's simple. I use 1Password to save all my passwords. Piece-o-cake. And even better it has an iPhone application... but I haven't used it yet.

5. Google Calendar w/ CalDAV support - Very recently Google added CalDAV support to their calendar application. I've been able to move from very rarely using Google Calendar to using it ALL THE TIME. All my calendars are now shared on Google. I use Apple's iCal to do all the interfacing and now I very easily share with others.

4. Yammer - The entire Web Collective team very quickly moved to using Yammer for daily internal messaging. We had been using an IRC channel for all real-time messaging, but it had plenty of drawbacks. Great for quick conversations with specific people, but Yammer is killer for just about everything else. We've been making great use of tagging in our messages so we have have historical reference.

3. Evernote - Evernote replaced the various other text-based note taking applications I had been using. It's been a winner for me because of tagging support and server-synching with my iPhone. The iPhone app has the wonderful feature of allowing me to archive whiteboard/flip-chart work very easily and make those photos available on my laptop moments later. Ever better, the photos are sent through OCR software on the server resulting in photos with text that is searchable!

2. iGTD - I had been using iCal's to-dos to manage most of my daily tasks. iGTD was a serious shot of adrenelin to that system. What I love about iGTD is that I didn't sacrefice being able to keep track of tasks through iCal since the tasks are sync'd. iGTD gives me much more latitude to categorize my tasks. Oh, and it support recurring to-dos which has always pissed me off about iCal.

1. - This web application well deserves the #1 spot. It is possibly the most amazing free web application I have ever seen. Everyone I have told about it started using it and loves it. If you are like me and have always wanted to keep a budget but didn't want to work very hard to do it, Mint is for you. It has totally taken the pain out of keeping track of my money on a daily, if not hourly basis. It even has a decent email and SMS alert system to let me know when the money is running low.

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