1. workflow

    For notes and to-do lists, I use Notational Velocity Fork (nvALT), which syncs with Simplenote, and keeps all my notes organized, searchable, and up-to-date on my laptop, iphone, and on the web.

    Who has time to read all the great articles you find on social media, or stumble upon on the web right when you see them for the first time? Perhaps my favorite web/mobile app is Instapaper, which lets you archive articles from your browser in raw text format for later reading with one click. It syncs up with a clean, simple, iphone app that syncs up, and has a great offline mode for those long underground subway rides.

    It’s hard to keep all your windows organized and app switching efficient when you’re using Google Apps and other cloud utilities. I use Fluid to turn web apps, like google calendar, into discrete desktop apps.

    Information overflow is the worst, which is why I try to keep my Twitter and Facebook streams pared down to 200-300 people maximum. I’m constantly unsubscribing from oversharers, negative nancies, trolls, livetweeters, and people who do nothing but publish links (to their own blogs). I use the stock Twitter app for OS X because it has clean lines—but I wish it were more like the original Tweetie, which was my favorite!

    For those of us who stare at computers for 12 hours a day, and then try to get a good night’s sleep, the results can be, um, fitful. Some research shows that the tone of your computer screen matters, since humans are used to bright blueish light during the day, and more yellowish light in the evenings. F.lux is a nifty little app that changes the tone of your computer screen gradually as the sun goes down, helping your brain understand that it’s the evening, ergo sleepytime.

    I use a whole variety of web apps with mobile counterparts for more personal stuff. My favorites include:

    • Mint for keeping track of my bank accounts and investments—and for making sure to pay bills on time

    • TripIt to keep track to travel plans, including flights, hotels and rental cars. It even scans your email inbox so you don’t have to do the tedious work of entering in the information yourself!

    • Goodreads to get friends’ recommendations for books, especially for my rooted Nook Color tablet.

    • Instagram for funky vintage-looking photos. I know, I know, it’s not professional in any way, and it can be overdone, but I still like it.