I’m a bit of a nut for web apps. I spend my free time scouring the internet for cool new apps. My clients love this, because they’d rather kiss a jellyfish than spend one second of their limited time searching for great apps that will make them more efficient, more productive and just plain happier. I’d like to share my current top five favorites, if you’ll indulge me.
1. gmail- Everybody knows what gmail is. I still believe it is one of the greatest apps on the planet because of how it connects to things and because of it’s amazing search functionality. If you’ve only scratched the surface with gmail, become a gmail ninja here: http://www.google.com/mail/help/tips.html. And if you’re using Outlook, just stop. Here’s a guide on how to come over from the dark side: http://learn.googleapps.com/outlook-users/.
2. Evernote- You might be familiar with this one, too. It’s really popular because it allows you to store a bunch of files and documents all in one spot with a pretty decent search function. The kicker? It actually reads images for text. I scan my business cards in and upload them to Evernote. Then, when I need to find that taxidermist, I just search for it and it pops right up. Just make sure the picture of the business card is oriented correctly. Warning: if you’ll be uploading a lot of stuff, you’ll probably need to pay the $45 annual fee for the pro version.
3. Remember the Milk- This amazing to-do app lets you create a bunch of lists and search them. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Ever get overwhelmed by how long your to-do list is? In Remember the Milk (RTM, for productivity geeks), you can create a list from your master list that just shows you tasks due today marked as urgent. You can tag, make them location based, give them time-frames, etc. It’s the most robust to-do app on the market. The downside? You’ll have to pay $25 for the year if you want to use the app on your iPhone or Blackberry. Though I paid almost twice that last year so, with any luck, the price will keep dropping. If you shudder at paying monies for a todo app, check out the solid and free but much less remarkable: Wunderlist.
4. TimeTrade- If you’re tired of trying to schedule appointments, this app will change your life. This one isn’t free. It’s $49 per year, but comes with a 30-day free trial. I wrote a full-length review of Time Trade not too long ago. For a free option, check out Blackberry’s social offering: Tungle.me.
5. Rapportive- This browser extension is just for gmail users and it’s pretty amazing. By pulling publicly available information from social media sources (based on email address), it can give you a much more complete view of the person you’re emailing (often including a photo). So instead of replying to an email from a total stranger, you can speak right to Jessica, a designer at a local ad agency, who loves sushi and just sat next to a weird dude on the subway. Sure, it’s a little creepy, but it really makes the faceless internet world seem a whole lot smaller and friendlier.
That’s my list. I hope one of these killer web apps makes you really happy. What’s on your list?