Most people are familiar with spreadsheets as a way to organise their data into a way that is easily read and is simple to use. However, due to their relative simplicity and ubiquitous nature, they are often seen as the do all data storage platform. This leads to over-sized and over-complex, linked spreadsheets that are very fragile and hard to work with.
I’m sure you have all seen it: the spreadsheet abyss that is tucked deep into your office network. You know, where all the spreadsheets are linked and only one person knows which bits you can edit to get the results you need and which bits if changed by one decimal point will ruin all of the sheets and linked calculations.
So, the obvious solution is a database. The way that databases are designed allows for separated data, layered processing above it to calculate anything that you need, and best of all, they are robust (if implemented correctly) and scale well. “But,” I hear you say, “I don’t know how to design or implement a database!” This is where Ragic! comes in. (more…)
I’ve got a serious problem: I’m addicted to music. It’s unusual for me to not be listening to music, especially when I’m working. The stereo is always on when I drive. Headphones are on when I walk the dog or go the gym. I’ve been in and fronted multiple musical groups, from alternative indie to heavy metal. I own hundreds of CDs, but made the transition to going all-digital over my university career, when I valued portability over all else.
These days, I’ve got multiple devices, each with a finite amount of hard drive space. I’ve got an iPod Classic that can hold everything, but my iPhone and iPads are both much more limited. My Android devices have even less room to spare. Rdio recently saved the day. We reviewed Rdio in 2011, but a lot has changed since then. Read on to find out what still makes Rdio worth the subscription today. (more…)
Getting stuff done — that is, getting ALL your stuff done, and on time — is something we all struggle with, even with the bevy of productivity tools available to us on web and mobile platforms. And sometimes, having a long list of things to do seems more like a hurdle than a solution — which is perhaps why Brussels-based designer-developer Vincenzo Ruggiero decided to build an app that focuses on helping you clear your task list rather than fill it up, and it’s called Postpone.
Postpone is a new to-do list app that lets you schedule tasks for when you actually need to do them, instead of creating long lists that become impossible to tackle. Sporting a clean interface, a simple workflow and some neat collaboration features, Postpone is suitable for users who are new to productivity tools as well as those looking for a new way to wrangle their to-dos – but just how helpful is this app when it comes to actually getting things done? Let’s take a closer look and find out.
The online education field is rapidly expanding. There are old warhorses like Khan Academy, new educators like Coursera, and universities getting into the game, like MIT’s OpenCourseWare and CalTech’s many online courses. Indeed, you can actually consider getting a full education on the web, maybe even for free.
But while the “classroom” is going online, the tools we use to study often aren’t reflecting the changes. As a student, you are watching a video on a screen, and that makes it difficult to take notes and share them with your classmates — unless you want to go back to writing your notes on paper.
That’s where VideoNot.es comes in. It’s an online notepad designed to make it simple to take notes from your online lectures. It’s one of the few apps designed specifically for distance learners, and if you’re taking a course online, you should be sure to check it out.
As the old saying goes, a good start is half the work done. Which is precisely why developers have saturated the web with full of project management apps. Sadly, most of them are merely copycats of the industry giants and leaving the users frustrated. Moreover, these applications are built with larger teams in mind and a single user is often left stranded.
Solo is an artistic project management app that is specially crafted with freelancers in mind. It uses a drastically different approach and the interface is unique. We’ve covered its first version already, but now its second version is now in beta. Here’s what’s new.
I love Instapaper. I’ve used the bookmarklet web app before I had an iOS device to read from, even when the web interface was — admittedly — rather ugly. But it still made reading longform articles much nicer than reading on most websites, especially back in 2009.
I tried the original Read it Later, and then gave Readability a shot. Pocket came along, and I dismissively tried it and left it behind, returning each time to the familiarity of Instapaper. I liked the service, Marco’s stand on how he ran his businesses, and — most of all — I loved discovering new articles in Instapaper from The Feature and Instapaper’s deceptively simple built-in social network.
All the while, Pocket kept adding features and improving its service, while Instapaper stayed the same — good, but not moving forward. The more I heard about it, the more I knew I had to give it a more serious try. With Instapaper being sold to Betaworks, it seemed like the perfect time to give its chief competitor a shot.
So I jumped over the fence to see if the grass was truly greener on the other side. (more…)