Scroll back to the top

Software and apps I'm using in 2017

It is always fun to take a look back and your previous year. As a technology geek, I like taking a look back and see what apps or software applications I really enjoyed using, and want to double down on in 2017 to help me in personal and work life. Here is my list:

Trello

Trello received its popularity mainly as a project management tool, however, you can organize any aspect of your life with Trello. This can be accomplished thanks to a vast library of power-ups; collaboration with others; and a lot more flexibility than meets the eye.

Sketch

I have been using Sketch since the fall of 2015, and I am still learning and getting better at it. If you’re not familiar, Sketch is a powerful graphics design tool that was created specifically for creating digital interfaces, such as the web and mobile apps. Every time I work in Sketch, I thrive to learn new techniques or a different way to use a tool I have learned before.

Affinity Photo

Affinity Photo is a relatively new product, created by a company that has been around for a while. It is an alternative to Photoshop, that comes with most of the tools needed to get any photo editing work done, and it comes at a much cheaper price. Serif is committed to free updates through at least version 1.0, so I am excited to see what new features will be brought in.

Dropbox Paper I use Dropbox daily. Even though Dabble Lab runs on Google Drive, and I also have a personal Google Drive, I still prefer Dropbox for its aesthetics. I recently started using Dropbox Paper for brainstorming and collaborative work that is not very structured, and I absolutely love it. Paper is not a full editor like Google Documents is, however, probably because of the aesthetics, it feels a lot less restrictive and allows for more freedom of thought. The bummer is that its another place where I could store something, and to account for.

IFTTT + Google Home

I recently added Google Home to my home and I really like it so far. GHome works a lot like Amazon Echo with what it does, however, it has less 3rd party skills than Alexa. Where it does makeup though is the native language support and how well it works with IFTTT. One of my favorite things to do is to simply add things to my groceries list in iOS reminders list by saying “Hey Google, add milk to my grocery list” and it simply does it. In order to do so in Alexa, I have to weirdly use a word “trigger” in some shape or form, and it just doesn’t feel as good. IFTTT is rapidly expanding, and now that I have a real way to use it, I am anticipating that I will only expand on it and potentially add other automation services, such as Zapier.

Screenflow

Screenflow is a professional grade screen casting application. It allows you to record your screen, add voiceover and add various effects, animations and transitions. It features a timeline editor just like a full fledged video editing software does. In 2017 I want to sharpen my screen recordings skills, improve the editing skills in Screenflow, and also improve my narration tone and voice.

Honorable Mentions

1.Affinity Designer – it is a partner app to Affinity Photo from Serif. As much as I like Sketch, there are tools that an overall graphic tool like Affinity Designer has, that Sketch doesn’t need to. And since I am already going against Photoshop by using Affinity Designer, I might as well stick with the same ecosystem.

2.Google Drive – I like Dropbox more for personal use, however when it comes to business use Google Drive wins. Sharing company documents, templates and agreements are definitely a strength of Google Drive.

3.Toggl timer – whether you’re a freelancer, or work for a company remotely, time tracking is important. If you don’t know how long a task takes you or what you spent your time on, it might be challenging to improve. Toggl is one of the most flexible timers on the market and it integrates with a lot of services. In my opinion, Toggl is second to none.

Well, I think that about sums it up. Yes, most of these “apps” are Mac apps. That’s probably because even though some people are able to make the switch to using an iPad as their main working computer, my needs will not be met with an iPad. The tasks I do just require a lot more resources that the iPad cannot provide.