This morning I sat stuck in the London Underground for about 90 minutes. I was listening to the Mac Power User Podcast – their “workflows” podcasts are great. Anyway, it got me thinking about the tools that I’ve wasted hours on over the years. I jotted down a little list on my iPhone as I waited for my train to start moving again. Here is that list.
To save you some time, I am only including my tried-and-true favorites. These are tools and software applications I use effortlessly every day, without even thinking about it. I am intentionally not including links to any of these apps; if I did, I would be tempting you to read about each, try each one out, and not spend any time writing. But I did decide to share my list, because I always wish people would share their work processes. This list reveals a bit about my own academic/writing workflow, and gives props to some of the developers who have made damn good products.
- Taskpaper (synced to iPhone with Simpletext.app)
*Utilities I couldn’t live without
- and most of all, Quicksilver. I am nearly certain that I truly could not live without Quicksilver.
- Dropbox (ditto)
- Notational Velocity (synced to iPhone with Simplenote.app)
- PASW Statistics (used to be called SPSS)
- ISI Web of Knowledge
- Time Out break reminder software
- Apimac timer (for timing myself while writing – or using the Pomodoro Technique)!
- A little clip-on digital kitchen clock and a pad of paper where I write what I’m working on RIGHT NOW and the time I start and end
*Excel functions for data analysis
- Pivot tables
- Conditional formatting
*writing support resources
- Mur Lafferty’s I Should Be Writing podcast
- Dr. Wicked’s Write or Die web tool
- Gina Hiatt’s Academic Writing Club
- Howard Becker’s Writing for Social Scientists