Top Apps for Student Productivity

As students we have all faced the prospect of sitting down and preparing oneself for a serious evening of productive revision, only to be led astray by a tweet, Facebook notification, text message or whatever. In this constantly connected world we are always plugged in to our digital feeds so much so that we don’t realise know it until we are forced to disconnect from it in some manner to get some actual work done.

I don’t know about you but I’ve long since given up on trying to disconnect, there is no way im able to turn my phone off. I just can’t! Instead I’ve leveraged useful tools on the digital platform to aid me in my productivity. Since It’s rather difficult for me to pry my hands away from by phone/tablet , I thought it would be good to turn this dependence on technology into a force for good which is why im sharing my favourite apps for productivity with you. Contrary to the title this isn’t just for students, however since I am a student myself I thought it would make sense to reach out to those in a similar position as myself. Without further ado here it is. 

Warning not every app is available on all the operating systems so don’t be mad at me ! : (

Top Apps for Student Productivity

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Any do

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Any do is a simple yet very effective task list app, it allows you to note down your tasks and assign a set time period that you  aim to complete them within. It categorises tasks using 4 simple headings ‘Today’ , ‘Tomorrow’ ,’Upcoming’ and ‘Someday’. When you’ve finished a task you simply swipe from left to right on the task and any do draws a rather realistic line across the task to mark it as completed. To undo it simply swipe from right to left. (note: the app has no way if knowing you’ve actually completed your tasks so you’ll have to be honest with yourself here….

It also features the ability to receive notifications when your task(s) are due for completion, I think this is great as It often reminds me of things that I’ve forgotten I’ve even noted down. 

Another feature of note is its seamless cloud sync between devices, so you can take any do with you on your smartphone, tablet and web browser (I”ve only used it with chrome apps)

It you use it properly then you’ll be amazed at how much you can get done through using this app.  

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Google keep

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Google keep is a note taking app that allows you to ‘keep’ whatever pops into your mind…… its really simple to use, you just note down whatever on you want in text form. It displays your notes in sticky note type fashion and it also allows you to add images and voice recordings to your notes to provide greater context to whatever your babbling on about.

Did I mention you can add colours to your notes….(yay colours) , if Google weren’t spoiling you enough , like everything else googly it syncs seamlessly across all your devices. Watcha waiting on?  get downloading!!!!!!

(Note: the iOS app is a fan made one only, so might have some bugs)

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Evernote

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Evernote has the same basic principle as most note taking apps,  however its superior to them all as no other app is as comprehensive as Evernote in terms of total features. I’ll pick out the ones most useful to me as a student. One of them is the ability to organise your notes into categories called ‘notebooks’.

This is very useful for me as I often categorise my notes for my different modules as a student into different modules , as a business student its ‘accounting & finance’ , economics, etc. In addition to this , it also allows you to record audio and take pictures.

I find this feature rather useful in lectures as I often pop my phone on the lecturer’s table and set it to record, the audio quality will depend on whether you have a mobile lecturer or not (geddit?….ha……no? okay, basically if your lecturer walks around a lot your screwed) and whether there is incessant coughing in the background, thankfully my course mates have long since recovered from the dreaded freshers flu so, generally the audio is very clear when played back.

This can again be organised into folders to accompany your notes on whatever subject your recording about.

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Cloud Storage apps (e.g. Dropbox, box, drive)

Dropbox

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In the words of my favourite lecturer at uni  “I AM ABSOLUTELY EVANGELICAL ABOUT ” Dropbox, or any cloud storage platform for that matter.

The number one reason why every student in the world with access to internet should use Dropbox (or any other cloud storage) is that fact that you will no longer suffer many perilous mini heart attacks when you realise you cannot find your USB.

For me Dropbox was the first  storage platform I came across so I’ve been a proper Dropbox aficionado since coming across it, ask my classmates I’ve signed up about 6 people so far ( and gained about 3gb extra storage space in doing so) for the purpose of group collaboration when doing group work.

The main feature I think that is particularly useful for students is the fact it allows ‘shared folders’ to be accessed by several parties, in other words your  mates can all access the shared folder to upload , download and edit work.

Its great if you cant meet up but have work to submit. and the best bit? NO MORE EMAILS WITH EXCLAMATION MARKS ABOUT HOW THIS VERSION OF THE GROUP ASSIGNMENT IS THE FINAL FINAL VERSION (3) !!!!!!! xxxx

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Quick Office

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Quick office is awesome for the following reasons:

* Its free, as a student it cant get any better than that

* It work a treat, offering the ability to create and edit word documents, presentations and excel spreadsheets

* Did I  mention its free?

* When you sign up with your Google drive account it gives you a whopping 15 GB of FREE storage

*Its FREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

* You can access you files on Google drive ,

That’s all I can muster up the effort to say at this stage , if you haven’t downloaded it by now I’m SMH (Shaking my head) as we speak

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Airdroid

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For those of you android users well jell of ios users seamless ability to send and receive texts using their Macs, behold the best you can hope for at this stage. I present unto thee Airdroid, its a really cool wireless device manager that lets you do a number of cool things including managing music, files and apps, locating your phone and texting using the on-line interface.

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Swiftkey

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Swiftkey is by far the best keyboard on the Play store , its the fastest most comprehensive keyboard you’ll ever come across. It learns how you type using an algorithm that none of us normal folk can understand to deliver personalised text predictions as you type.

It also includes ‘flow’ the continuous input feature enabling you to swipe from letter to letter and write a sentence without your finger leaving your grubby screen. Perfect for snap-chatting your friends in lectures ! …err I mean getting down those notes

p.s right now im using the beta version as it has some neat features not quite ready for full release yet, if you want in on it use the swiftkey beta

If the idea of something secret like a beta test scares you then be prepared to shell out the almighty sum of £1.50 , hefty? call it an investment

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Cloud Print

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Pressed for time ? every student decided to go to the library at the same time as you ? no computer? need to print ? no problem.

Google cloud print has got you covered, with this neat app you can print of your mobile device very easily. it requires a little setting up via chrome , once you add your printer to your account your all set. you’ll be able to send your files to a cloud printer near you using the app.

Print job done ! Now guffaw as you watch final year students engaging in the student computer ‘hunger games’.

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Sony Xperia Z1Mini-Review

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It was the opinion of the verge that the Sony Xperia Z1 the Sony best smartphone to date. As an avid admirer of Sony’s smartphones (a sony Xperia s being my first), I expected a lot….. and after reading what I call many reviews and YouTube videos. I consider myself infored as such to post a super mini review as I’m way to lazy to do a proper one.

I must say I certainly agree with the Verge (disclaimer: I agree with everything they say as I’d like to work for them in the future)…..

This thing is awesome. It packs a punch despite being a relatively small smartphone (small for android that is).

It has an excellent 720p ips display, tons of neat features and as always an amazing camera,in addition to some nice beef under the hood including a 2300mAh battery.

Bigger than the1,800mAh, 1,900mAh 2,070mAh batteries found inside the HTC One Mini, S4 Mini and Motorola Moto G. Me Gusta !!!!!!

Did I mention it runs android 4.3 ? (I obviously did not and that is a stupid question nevertheless) I’m confident this will fly of stockists shelves and Sony really have outdone themselves here. People are calling this an iPhone 5 competitor…it’s safe to say me likey… : p

It’ll retail at £450, rather hefty which is the one downer I can be bothered to think of, however call it a clean £400 Sony and I’ll throw in unpaid internship work and we have a deal.

Peep the video above by my long time imaginary girlfriend and tech crush Erica Griffin for more : ) xoxo

Adios,

BBC News – Sony files patent for ‘SmartWig’

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25099262

Sony taking Wearable technology to ‘hair raisingly’ new levels.  *Ba dum  tssss*

Why you should be using Online Video for your Business

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Online video is a sustainable and growing source of revenue for businesses worldwide. Many now call it the future of advertising, as we speak businesses big and small are taking advantage of the benefits of embracing online video, here’s why you should too.

5 reasons why you should be using Online Video for your Business 

Statistics

YouTube recently announced it receives 3 BILLION views a day, equivalent to nearly half the world’s population watching a YouTube video each day.

UK digital ad spend is expected to continue to grow by 11.6% to £5.9bn this year. And in 2014 digital will leap by 10.6% to £6.5bn.The market for online video within the digital space is growing. Businesses are investing more on digital advertising platforms such as online video.

Online video levels the playing field

Online video has opened up the opportunity for small businesses to brand themselves and reach a mass audience on a relatively low budget. One example can be seen in the case of Orabrush inventor Dr. Bob Wagstaff, who simply didn’t know how to market his invention. After parting with a few hundred dollars to create a promotional YouTube video, the view count soon rose from 5000 to over 18,000,000 views, he went from struggling to get local suppliers to listen to being swamped with orders from over 40 countries worldwide.

People ‘want’ more videos

Consumers are actively ‘seeking out’ online videos; the keyword “video” outranks nearly any other keyword you can think of. Just go to Google trends and search “video”.

Online videos are quick and easy to digest, more engaging to view and bring to life everything from products and places to people and experiences.

Also, did you know that Google, MSN, Yahoo, AOL and countless other Search Engines give priority to websites containing video content?

It gets your message across quickly

It is a way to engage with people that’s comprehensive, quick, intuitive and relevant.  It can be difficult for businesses to get their message across in a way which caters to all within their intended audience quickly. Online video changes that as it allows business to creatively pitch their story succinctly to their audience within a limited frame, engaging the audience so that they are more likely to interact. This is essential as online Consumers spend an average of 1 minute on a webpage, highlighting the need for highly effective advertising delivered in the shortest time possible.

Impact

Online videos nowadays are the ‘go to’ source of information for companies wishing to explain an idea to an audience with impact. Explainer online videos simplify complex information, making messages clear and easy to understand. Companies are increasingly turning to this method to present their ideas to the world. Video is also a triple threat, people can listen to, read and see your content, this is an effective format of multi sensory communication as it ensures a company’s message is understood by a wider variety of people, therefore impacting across all mediums and reaching a wider audience.

Sources

Statistics IAB: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xRjgkWXZHug#at=24

Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/media/2012/apr/03/uk-web-advertising-spend

http://www.theguardian.com/media/2013/jun/19/uk-newspapers-print-ad

orabrush: http://localmarketpro.com/268/the-power-and-importance-of-online-video-for-small-business/

fourth source: http://www.fourthsource.com/online-video/the-growing-importance-of-web-video-in-online-marketing-3358

http://socialtriggers.com/why-every-business-needs-video/

Weird and Wonderful tech #1

Hey guys , I’ve been seeing a lot of unusual technology recently and I though I would start a series profiling some of the most peculiar forms of tech I’ve come across so here it goes. Welcome to the first edition in my weird and wonderful tech series

The A – Bike

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The future of city travel is here. For those seeking a fast, light and efficient way to travel look no further. Designed by Sir Clive Sinclair the A-bike is a unique folding bike, the smallest and lightest of its kind in the market. The A-bike marries a revolutionary design with a lightweight frame.  It rides just like a normal bike, but then folds up and can be popped into a zipped bag allowing it to be taken anywhere…on the train, bus, plane, you name it. It is the result of 5 years of research by Sir Clive and his team at Sinclair research and represents a truly modern, innovative and downright cool form of travel. Heat treated aluminium ensures its sturdy and light making it a convenient travel tool. It folds in under 10 seconds made possible by the innovative 3 click telescope mechanism.  It’s perfect for commuters travelling around the city and offers a simple and practical solution for anyone wanting to cycle more. Now for the businessy part…. there are two awesome versions of the A-bike to purchase, the ‘A-bike plus’ for a spring special offer of £139 and the’ A-bike city’ for £289. Hurry, Limited stocks apply.

http://www.a-bike.co.uk/

HAI

Well I finally mustered up enough courage to do it. I’ve gone and started my own tech blog. It’s currently 6.25pm E/T in Atlanta, and I am on holiday. That was totally irrelevant, however I can assure you that this blog won’t be (pinky swear). What’s it about I hear you ask ? Well it’s all about technology. Technology, Technology, Technology. I am absolutely obsessed with it. I’m writing this post now Swyping away  face down on my GS3, whilst my
estranged aunties and uncles quiz me on my future plans, *sigh*.  Don’t Expect any extreme technical knowledge here, just view this blog as an outlet of a self proclaimed technophile, working his way around current technology affairs. Join me as I delve into the world of technology, one megabyte at a time. : )

ANDREWADEGA

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