Posted in App

Index Card App – Organize (Ideas, Stories, Papers, More)


When you see the image below, if you get what is going on, you understand the idea of Index Card 4.

The app allows you to capture ideas, draft or write out information to compile ideas. The idea is simple. Like real index cards you can capture information and ideas and then sort them to an order that makes sense. From there, you can complete your project.

The power of the app is demonstrated in the short youtube video below.

So, if you are someone who likes to organize thoughts using paper, try an electronic version. Index Card 4 can make you more efficient and productive.

Posted in App, Review

AirTable – Cloud Database


app_icon@144w

If you are interested in using and learning about databases that can be synced with your various devices via the cloud by using a browser on your Mac and an app on your iOS device, check out AirTable.

The feel is like a very flexible spreadsheet. However, it is really a powerful relational database. Collaboration is also possible. You can share tables, see changes, chat with teammates and more.

Content too can be integrated with services like Dropbox, Box, Evernote, Google Drive and more.

There are starter templates that allow you to get going fast. You can create your own too. The templates are set up for both personal and business functions. The template categories include: personal, sales & customers, event planning, project management, human resources, and software development.

The pricing is set up as follows: Free unlimited databases that do not exceed 1,200 rows per database and up to 2GB database / attachment space size. For $12 per user per month, you get up to 5,000 dos and up to 5GB. For $24 per user per month, you get 50,000 rows and up to 20GB of space along with priority support. There appears to be enterprise support coming soon.

According to the Airtable website “You can add as many collaborators and bases as you’d like for free, as long as each base falls below the per-base record limits described above. If any of your bases exceeds those limits, you’ll need to upgrade the team to which that base belongs (if you are a solo user, you are considered a “team” of one person).

For paid teams, you will be charged the per-user, per-month fee for each person you’ve invited to collaborate on bases belonging to that team. You will not be charged for read-only collaborators.

If you’re using Airtable for a nonprofit or an educational institution, you may qualify for a discount.”

There is a support page that addresses popular questions. You can see Airtable in action at these video pages.

To check out the iOS version of the app, click here. The Mac version is here.

 

Posted in App

OneNote for iPad – OCR and Handwriting Update


OneNote 2.0 icon

OneNote for iPad has received a major update to its abilities – Handwriting and OCR for images.

The app is used to capture and share thoughts and ideas as well as organize information. The information can be synced between your iOS devices and Mac via Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud service.

OneNote Screenshot with Handwriting

The developer describes the new features as follows:

• Handwriting – Sometimes, there’s just no substitute for putting pen to paper and sketching out your next great idea. That’s why we’re introducing handwriting to OneNote. Highlight documents, scribble notes, or just doodle until your heart’s content.
• OCR for Images – Search for text contained within images in your OneNote notebooks. OCR is now supported on new images added to OneDrive notebooks. You can even copy the image text and add it to your notes. Existing images will also become searchable soon!
• Bug fixes

Be aware that the OCR function is not instantaneous. It may take some time for the function to “decode” the image. It seems to work fairly well with type. It is not clear whether handwriting recognition is working.

In any case, OneNote has taken a major step forward against Evernote as a rival for ease of capturing ideas, information and syncing.

Posted in App, Review

Together for iOS Released


Together icon

If you have been using Together on your Mac, you may be glad to know that the universal iOS version of Together has been just been released. This app can work independently on your iPad or iPhone and is supposed to allow you to access your Mac App Store Together iCloud library on the go.  You can read more about the iOS version from the company web site.

If you are not familiar with Together, think of it as a high-tech scrapbook that allows you to easily clip and keep notes, documents, images, movies, thoughts, sounds, web pages and more organized and collected.

The Mac App store version allows you to store information on iCloud so you can share your library across your Macs. The difference between the Mac App store version of Together and the one available directly from the developer boils down to the Mac App store version can sync with iCloud and the other does not.

Together Screen Shot Shelf

 

In portrait mode on your iPad, swipe from left to right on the screen to expose the shelf after seeing the welcome page.

The promise of the universal iOS version is that now, all of the information and bits that have been gathered on Together on the Mac can be taken on the go and transferred from what you do on the go to your Mac. In my personal experience and those of others who have posted reviews on the app store, the syncing is not working as is expected. There is no doubt that the issues will be resolved by the developer soon.

If you have not checked out the Together for Mac app, do yourself a favor and do so. The ability to clip and store bits of information, notes, images and more while working on different projects in different apps is a great tool that is always available from a handy tab on the side of your screen.

The developer explains “If you’re already using Together for Mac, then Together for iPad and iPhone will look both welcomingly familiar and work as naturally as you would expect on your iPhone or iPad, with everything just a few taps away. Your library will show all your groups, folders and favorites in the Groups view, along with tags, labels and ratings in the Tags view.”

If you have the App Store version for your Mac, make sure you are running the latest version by opening App store and see if Together needs to be updated.

Together iCloud

You can even encrypt items with a password to keep information private until it is viewed then automatically encrypted again.

iCloud Sync Setup

From the Help section of Mac App Store version of  Together, you can learn how to move a library to iCloud. If you have been using Together on your Mac, as with anything you may sync for the first time, make a back up of your Together libraries first.

Next, File > Library > Move to iCloud

According to the developer – it is possible to store libraries either on your computer or in iCloud with the Mac App Store version. When stored in iCloud, libraries are synced automatically with iCloud whenever your computer is online, and will still be available when your computer is offline. Once a library is stored in iCloud, you do not need to do anything else for it to sync.

Together only opens one library at a time, but it is possible to have multiple libraries and to switch between them. To do that on your Mac, Choose File > Library from the menu.

Here you will see a list of libraries, plus options to open a library that isn’t listed, create a new library, or reveal the library in the Finder.

If you are using a version of OS X before 10.8, you cannot move libraries to iCloud. Instead you can import libraries into an iCloud library. See Importing other Together libraries for instructions.

If a library is synced with iCloud, it is possible to stop syncing it by moving it to a local folder:

Choose File > Library > Move to Local Folder from the menu

Choose a location for the library on your computer.

The developer has explained the pricing of the apps given the new introduction of the iOS app.

Pricing & Availability

Together for iPad and iPhone 1.0 requires iOS 7.1 and later and can be purchased on the App Store at the introductory price of $9.99. It’s a universal app, so the same version will work on both iPhone and iPad.

Together for Mac

Together 3.2 from the Mac App Store is required to share libraries with Together for iPad and iPhone, as only Mac App Store apps can use iCloud. Existing Together users who’ve purchased Together 3.0 or later from the Mac App Store will automatically get Together 3.2 as a free upgrade.

It is not possible to transfer licenses to the Mac App Store version, but if you have purchased Together 3 for Mac directly from Reinvented Software in the last 120 days and would like to transfer to the Mac App Store version, please get in touch.

For everyone else, Together 3.2 on the Mac App Store will be half-price at $19.99 for one month following its release.

Conclusion

If you have been a fan of Together for Mac, you will want this app. If you are looking for a way to keep ideas, thoughts and bits of information organized and accessible and synced, you may want to wait for the kinks to be ironed out. When this happens, this app is sure to be a welcomed addition to those not comfortable storing their lives and details on third party apps like Dropbox and Evernote because the information remains with you and on Apple iCloud.

The Together Mac app is available separately via the Mac App store (iCloud sync ability) or directly from the developer (without iCloud sync) and appears to be discounted substantially now that the iOS version has just been released.

Posted in App

PDF Connect and File Manager FREE for limited time


A couple of apps worth trying to help manage your files and PDFs on your iPad are free for a limited time : PDF Connect – Annotation, Scanner, Converter, Page Editor and Form Filling and File Manager Pro App.

PDF Connect allows you to gather, organize and mark up various PDFs.

iPad Screenshot 1

The features are outlined as follows:

[Scanner: Capture Valuable Information]
-Scan and convert to encrypted PDFs
-Scan Adjustments: Cropping and brightness
-Customize scan project: Page number, layout and margin

[File Transfer: Access files on the go]
-Send, receive, and manage email attachments
-Sync files with Apple’s iCloud across different devices
-Access files via Wi-Fi, USB, Dropbox, Box, GoogleDocs, Google Drive, SugarSync and MyDisk
-Enhance workplace collaboration by FTP and WebDAV client support
-Support multi-account manager across different cloud services
-Support GoogleDocs online editing
-Download web content from browser/URL

[Annotation: Extract Knowledge from PDFs] 
-Fill, sign, and share PDF forms
-Manage and store signature
-Highlight, underline, strikeout, and squiggly text
-Annotation tools: lines, arrows, circles, squares, freehand draw, text boxes, sticky notes and stamps
-Flatten PDFs to retain all annotations

[Page Edit: Customize Your PDFs]
-Rearrange page orders
-Insert several templates: Blanks, line, square and music paper

[PDF Reader: The Solution to All Your PDF Needs]
– PDF converter (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Web Pages, Pages, Numbers, Keynote and other*)
-Document Management
-View in bookmark, outline and thumbnail
-Level up reading experience with Auto Scroll and Text Reflow
-Private Folder
-Air Print & Air Play
-VGA Out (for iPad only)

*Various file types supported:
-MS Office documents
-image files (png, jpg, thm, jpeg, tif, tiff, gif, bmp)
-audio files (aiff, aifc, wav, mp3)
-video files (mov, mp4, mpv)
-iWork files (key, pages, numbers)
-Comic files (cbr, cbz,ePub)
-HTML files and Safari web archives
-Others

File Manager Pro App allows you to gather together various kinds of files and organize them. Whether the files are from your email, a cloud account, iTunes or elsewhere, you can arrange them to take on the go.

iPad Screenshot 4

You can download your files from your computer using iTunes or open documents directly from Email. In addition, File Manager Pro connects to a large variety of cloud services, such as Dropbox or Box.com. With iCloud you can seamlessly synchronize your content on all your iOS devices. Download features include:

-iCloud Synchronization
-Google Drive
-Dropbox
-SkyDrive
-Box.com
-WiFi Connect
-Browser Download
-Open from Email
-Open docs from other apps

MANAGE & ORGANIZE

The intuitive user interface is amazingly simple and makes organizing your content just a breeze. The app combines traditional file browsing with a truly touch enabled experience. The path view feels just right for navigating through your files. In detail the app has the following features:

-Create new folders
-Mark favorite files
-Copy and move documents
-Open files in other apps
-Print documents
-Rename files
-Zip and unzip
-Email files

READ & VIEW

File Manager has an extremely robust document viewer for files such as PDFs and Microsoft Office documents. You can also view images, play your mp3s or watch videos with the in-built players. In addition, you can password-protect File Manager Pro, so that your documents can only be viewed by you. In total, the app supports the following formats:

-Powerpoint
-Excel
-Word
-PDFs
-Keynote
-Numbers
-Pages
-Images
-Web Files
-Audio
-Video
-Zip Files

Posted in App, Commentary

Organize Sale from Apple Store


Organize Week 2

Apple has a three week promotion targeting the Get Stuff Done concept. The promotion this week relates to “Organize.”

The apps promoted and on sale are Gemini: The Duplicate Finder, Unclutter, Delicious Library 2, Together, Tree, MindNode Pro, Compartments, DaisyDisk and Home Inventory.

These apps are designed to organize your digital and physical world. Whether you are trying to shave a few megabytes off of your hard drive or create an inventory of your house, there is an app for you.

If you are new to the concept of mind mapping, you should check out MindNode Pro and Tree. These apps are designed to help you organize your thoughts for papers, books, articles, etc.

Delicious Library helps you keep up with you books and almost any other item that has a bar code.

The sale ends February 7. So, visit the developers’ web sites to learn more about the app and take advantage of the sale.

 

Posted in App, Commentary

GTD and OmniFocus 2.0 for Mac


Use this time in the beginning of the year to review how you want to become organized and take the first step – buy an app and start dumping out of your mind and off of all the various lists you have a master list of things you want to get done.

Once you have accomplished that, you have taken a big step on the path to organization. You must force yourself to add tasks to that list and review it regularly. No app can make you enter the tasks, they can help you organize and act on them.

On January 31, OmniGroup will be showing off the update to their Mac program OmniFocus. (It is not going to be released that day, only debuting to the public.)

According to the CEO of OmniGroup, “if you’re looking at purchasing the Mac app, it would be quite reasonable to wait until after the OmniFocus 2 debut so you know what’s coming before you make a decision. To make that wait easier for everyone, we’ve decided to post a temporary license key so you can all use the app between now and then without having to make a purchase:”

License Owner: Waiting for OmniFocus 2

License Key: KXKN-ZJDB-EJCX-LZHW-CFBF-QFC

The current Mac app allows for you to enter, organize and review your todo items.

No matter which app you are considering to help you organize, you should reflect on the model used by OmniFocus – enter your information on one device and it appears on the other devices you use. Cross off an item as done on one device, it is gone from the others. The OmniFocus cloud model appears below.

No matter which app you may be considering or using to (help) organize your life, make sure you review the ability of the app to capture information on one device and seamlessly sync it to another device or the web. Find out if the app has a sister or compatible app on another device you may need to access to enter or delete information.

As pointed out previously, Apple has placed several of the Mac apps for organizing on sale. Look at see if there are compatible iOS apps so you can organize on whatever device you are using.

Posted in App

OmniPlan for iPad Released


For those who like to organize and plan projects visually, OmniPlan for the iPad may be just what you are looking for. Today, the OmniGroup released the iPad version of its popular Mac application OmniPlan.

iPad Screenshot 1

The developer describes the app for the iPad as follows:

OmniPlan is designed to help you visualize, maintain, and simplify your projects. Break down tasks, optimize the required resources, and monitor your entire plan—all at a glance. Collaborate with your colleagues and share every detail, update a calendar with your days off, or mix and match. Accept and reject changes one-by-one or all in one go. OmniPlan provides features like Gantt charts, schedules, summaries, and milestones to let you manage all of your activities. OmniPlan helps you manage projects that are as simple or complex as you need them to be—without the complexity.

You can learn more from the video below.

Using the app, you can create a visual timeline.

iPad Screenshot 2

You can sync on the road with a server to keep you colleagues up to date. If you are syncing with others, you can use change tracking to review, browse and accept or reject project updates from your collaborators.

iPad Screenshot 3

The app is priced at $49.99 and is available now.

Posted in App, Review

Index Card App – Stacks above others


If you have an affinity for working with index cards, you will love the updated Index Card app for the iPad.

It presents the best of what you use index cards for – capturing or organizing information and ideas with the modern tools to search, reorganize and share that information.

iPad Screenshot 1

Quite simply, you create index cards by starting a new project. Then, tap on the + to start your first index card. Type in the title and then synopsis. Tap back to have access to the back of the card for a place to put even more typed information.

You can choose different card colors by tapping on the color swatch on the left and selecting the color of your new card.

The settings are minimal and sufficient. You can choose different backgrounds for your cards to sit on, change the fonts and link your cards to your Dropbox account.

iPad Screenshot 3

There are 3 different views for your cards: card view, outline view and vertical view. You can choose the view at the top left. In any view, you can tap hold and drag the card or information to a new place to create a new order.

Sharing the cards is easy as well. You can send them via email in “Indexcard”, TXT or RTF format.

The ability to stack or clip together index cards into a logical group is a great bonus. Although it is not completely obvious how to accomplish that task initially, once you understand it, the value of a stack is invaluable. To stack cards, tap on edit at the top right and then tap the cards you want to stack. A blue check mark will appear at the bottom right of each selected card you want to stack. Tap stack, you will be given a chance to name the stack and the cards will be stacked.

To unstack, tap on the stack and tap edit. Select the cards to unstack and the “unstack” button becomes available to tap and remove that card from the stack. One or more cards can also be moved to another project by tapping on the move button.

You can also choose the vertical view, and then drag and drop cards within a column to create a stack. Once you drag a card under another card, you will be able to name your stack.

Once you get the app, review the included “Tutorial Project.” This set of cards walks you through using the app. Make sure you look at the cards in the different views and rotations so you get a sense of how to use the app.

Pros

Simple, intuitive, easy to use tool. Easy to understand. Great organizational tool.

Cons

It is not apparent how to easily uncreate a stack once it is created should you decide you no longer want the stack.

Updated feature requests:

My personal feelings are not meant to disparage the app. I would love to use the app more and think that the following features would be a natural fit for the app: Draw on back: With so much room on the back of a note card, it would be nice to be able to draw out a thought or image. Scale: It would be nice to scale the size of the cork board up and down to have a view of more cards at a time for easy movement of the cards. Test Mode: For students, it would be nice to add a feature to allow “test” mode to allow you to practice taking a test once you create notecards for reviewing a school project.

Conclusion.

If you are looking for a great index card app, do not hesitate to download and begin using Index Card. For $4.99 it is cheaper than the price of 2 spiral bound stacks of index cards at Staples.