About Productivity, Social Networks and everything else I'm interested in

Month: December, 2012

Just in time for New Year’s, RunKeeper upgraded to 3.0


Around New Year’s Day, many of us desire to do something to make ourselves better. That means resolutions are written (that are usually broken within a few weeks) to eat better, drink less, and exercise more. The best app for tracking exercise and sharing it with friends, RunKeeper (free), has just been updated to version 3.0 with a newly streamlined UI and new features.

One thing I’ve always enjoyed doing while out on RunKeeper-tracked walks is taking photos. Frankly, it’s always been a bit of a hassle. Well, the company has enhanced the photo-taking features to make it easier to shoot pictures while on a run or walk and then share the images with friends through Facebook and Twitter without leaving the app.

If you’re an Elite member of RunKeeper ($19.99 per year), another new feature allows you to turn on live activity tracking so friends and family can track you. That’s perfect for letting your friends know where you are when you’re six hours into your first marathon.

Gallery: RunKeeper 3.0

As you can see from the screenshots in the gallery, RunKeeper now has a cleaner design with less text. It’s easier to read and to navigate. RunKeeper 3.0 is available for download now on the App Store.

Just in time for New Year’s, RunKeeper upgraded to 3.0 originally appeared on TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Mon, 31 Dec 2012 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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via TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog http://www.tuaw.com/2012/12/31/just-in-time-for-new-years-runkeeper-upgraded-to-3-0/

Everything in Evernote

Article Complet : http://productivityist.com/everything-evernote/
via Pocket

Frog Design’s Hartmut Esslinger Reveals Early Apple Designs in New Book (Juli Clover/MacRumors)


Juli Clover / MacRumors:
Frog Design’s Hartmut Esslinger Reveals Early Apple Designs in New Book  —  Designboom (via The Verge) today got a hold of some photographs of early Apple computer designs from Hartmut Esslinger’s new book, Design Forward.  —  Esslinger founded Frog Design, the company that Apple partnered …

via Techmeme http://www.techmeme.com/121228/p43#a121228p43

A Case for Getting Personal with Productivity


Productivity is a very personal topic for me. At times it has gotten too personal, but that has helped me develop such a close understanding with the art and craft of personal productivity. It’s what has helped me become a productivityist. Task management apps have simply helped me along the way.

Now I’ve made no secret about the fact that I’ve used numerous task management apps – I’ve gone through a similar journey as Gabe over at Macdrifter is writing about as of late. I am able to move between them – either by abandoning them or simply testing them and using them for specific purposes – because “what’s good for the goose isn’t always good for the gander”, as they say. Apps like Asana come to mind, along with IQTELL. I’ve used Things and The Hit List, and I pay for and use Flow.

I test apps. I play with them. I even have a workflow set up so that when I do use a new task management app, I can copy and paste the details of that workflow in there so that each one is evaluated on on an even playing field. It took me a while to get the place I’m at now, where I can shift almost seamlessly from app to app. I think that a lot of it has to do with what Cal Newport wrote about this week: I use the apps I’m testing for the shallow work. I use the ones I’ve added to be workflow for the deeper work

So what task management apps allow me to do the deeper work?

For individual task management, I always come back to OmniFocus. I like having a separate app for myself and myself alone. I like how OmniFocus gives me both the time and space I need to create – the things I need to make great work happen. I think that adding a collaborative component would take that much-needed space that I need, which would result in a lack of focus. I’ll leave my collaborative task management to the apps that do those well (such as the aforementioned ones) and let OmniFocus be my productivity safe haven. So my deeper work generally begins with capture and ends with a checkmark in OmniFocus. As for the other apps in my workflow that help me get the deeper work done…I’ve written about them over at The Next Web.

There’s nothing wrong with using multiple tools as long they are being used with the purest of intentions in mind. Going against that mindset will result in failed experimentations (see my Evernote experiment) and friction that simply is there of your own design. I use all of my tools for the reasons I use them. I know what they are to be used for and i use them for that. My goal – to put it in lifehacking terms – is to hack life, not hack the things that hack life. A productivityist’s goal is to be productive…not do productive.

This week on Mikes on Mics, we spoke with Ken Case (CEO of The Omni Group) and the conversation revolved around the current iteration of OmniFocus…and even waded into the waters of what we might be able to expect from Omnifocus 2. You can listen to Episode 47 of the Mikes on Mics podcast here.

via Productivityist.com http://productivityist.com/a-case-for-getting-personal-with-productivity/

Quick tip: Using 1Password when you can’t use 1Password



1Password is almost always the first app I install on a new machine. It’s my key to opening all of the necessary accounts and it holds all of my software licenses. It’s literally indispensable. I’m going to just go ahead and assume you use it or are at least familiar with it and move along.

You may know this already, but there’s a hidden gem in your 1Password keychain file. If you locate the 1Password.agilekeychain file (PreferencesGeneral, first item) and right click it in Finder, you can view the package contents. Immediately inside you’ll see a file called 1Password.html. It’s a web-based means of accessing all your data without 1Password. Just open it in your browser and go.

Note that Google Chrome as of about v14 is horrible for running local files (and bookmarklets on SSL sites… another story). To avoid this, I launch Chrome with a wrapper script:

/Applications/Google\ Chrome.app/Contents/MacOS/Google\ Chrome --allow-running-insecure-content --allow-file-access-from-files &

If you don’t feel like dealing with command line flags, though, open your 1Password.html file in Safari. Whatever you do, don’t open it in Firefox — because that would mean you’d have to use Firefox. Just trying to keep you safe.

Mike Rose in the comments notes that you can use a Dropbox URL instead of accessing from the local file, avoiding the Chrome issues and alleviating the need to sync the keychain file locally. Smart one, that Mike Rose.

With this feature, you can get to your passwords even when you can’t run 1Password. Accessing your Dropbox-synced keychain file through the web interface is the most practical example. I’ve been setting up a couple of remote machines where I never intend to use the GUI and am trying to avoid installing apps in general. I install Dropbox1, though, and I can get all of the info I need without installing 1Password everywhere.

Second use case: you use really long passwords and/or need to copy extremely long serial numbers when installing apps. You have 1Password on your iPhone, but it’s not doing you much good with things you can’t type, and you don’t have a clipboard catcher on the machine your working on.

Just the serial numbers, please

Don’t want to deal with syncing the keychain file, but need a bunch of serial numbers? Go to your Software folder in 1Password, select all and choose “Export Selected” from the File menu. Check the necessary fields (probably just title, registered email, registered name and license code) and export it as a plain text file. SCP/FTP that to a remote machine or put it on a USB drive.

Now you can just search for the software by name and get the registered name and serial number with almost zero hassle. I use bash function that runs a command like grep -i sublime licenses.txt | awk '{print $4}' | pbcopy to output just the serial number for Sublime Text 2 straight to my clipboard.

I don’t recommend doing this with your passwords. There’s a reason you keep those in 1Password and not strewn about on post it notes or in plain text files.

  1. Pro tip: Use selective folder sync in Dropbox preferences on remote machines to just sync a single folder with things like 1Password keychains and your dotfiles. Alternatively, make a secondary free Dropbox account for your synced items and share the sync folder back to your main account. Just use the secondary account on remote machines and you’ll have all your synced files, without the extra 150 gigs in your account. 

Originally posted on BrettTerpstra.com at Quick tip: Using 1Password when you can’t use 1Password

via Brett Terpstra http://brettterpstra.com/quick-tip-using-1password-when-you-cant-use-1password/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+BrettTerpstra+%28Brett+Terpstra%29

Two Dollar Tuesday


The following apps have been discounted to $1.99 in the Mac App Store for one day only.

TaskPaper (normally $24.99) – TaskPaper - Hog Bay Software

Chronicle (normally $14.99) – Chronicle - Bill Management - LittleFin LLC

Ulysses (normally $9.99) – Ulysses - The Soulmen GBR

DropZone (normally $9.99) – Dropzone - Aptonic Limited

Codebox (normally $9.99) – CodeBox - Vadim Shpakovski

DragonDrop (normally $9.99) – DragonDrop - ShinyPlasticBag Apps


*Purchase Supports Mac App Deals

via Mac App Deals http://macappdeals.com/2012/12/18/two-dollar-tuesday-28/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MacAppDeals+%28Mac+App+Deals%29

Checkvist Web App

Checkvist Web App.


A review of Checkvist by Macdrifter. Checkvist is an outliner on the web with Markdown support. Powerful import and export features.

What If You Don’t Want to Be a Manager?


Imagine that you’ve invested years of blood, sweat and tears at work, and have successfully climbed the corporate ladder, only to wake up one day and realize that you sort of hate what you’re doing. Sure, you used to love it, and the more successful you became, the higher up the ranks of management you went. But now, instead of doing the hands-on work that you loved, you find yourself buried in managerial tasks like budgeting and supervising people that leave you feeling numb at best. You find yourself in the ironic position where all your hard work and success have landed you in a job that leaves you feeling empty, frustrated, and unfulfilled. That’s what happened to me. But how? Or better yet, why?

As I rose through the executive ranks to my last incarnation, EVP and Worldwide Creative Director for Nickelodeon, instead of feeling directly connected to the creation of our programming and other content, I found myself spending nearly all my time in meetings with corporate peers and higher-ups. In theory, I should have been happy. I was working with good, creative people (many of whom remain my close friends), I was earning a great income, and the company made cool stuff that my own young kids loved. But. But. I was merely managing the people who actually did and made things. I no longer operated in my personal sweet spot, where my sense of accomplishment after closing a difficult sale or launching a new product was contingent on my having had a concrete deliverable and the sense that my efforts were integral to its success. Being a manager caused me to feel disconnected from what career analyst Daniel Pink has identified as the three primary motivators of behavior: autonomy, mastery and purpose. I had little autonomy, little interest in gaining mastery as a manager (in spite of myriad coaches), and felt dissociated from my true self.

Why do we reward success on the job with a promotion out of the job and into management? It’s a phenomenon that reveals antiquated flaws in organizational design (neither employees nor companies are in the long-term pension-building loyalty business anymore) as well as a 20th century, pre-behavioral economics lack of understanding about what really makes people tick at work. Companies continue to cling to the notion that one of the only mechanisms they have to acknowledge employees’ talent is to make them managers and then to continue to promote them into ever-higher levels of management — reflecting the misguided assumption that being good at something also means being able to (and wanting to) manage others doing the same thing. Once in management, its trappings — 401k’s, bigger compensation packages and offices, fancy titles — don’t really satisfy many of us who, like me, miss the doing. But because we often identify ourselves with our job titles (I’m Director of Marketing) — buying into the idea that clear titles confer status and meaning — it remains hard to envision work in the absence of titles. Management titles allow us to mark our growth, and our maturity. And it’s for all of these reasons that it took me a long time to realize that being in management was wrong for me.

I know now from my research into the science of emotion, that as corporate executive I felt like I had to pretend to be something I wasn’t — I didn’t like being a manager, but I was a manager, so I had to appear to be interested in all the stuff that went along with being a manager. This is something social scientists call “emotion labor” — what you experience when you feel obliged to act differently from your natural inclinations. Eventually, I quit my job and, over the course of several years and false starts, I reinvented myself as a journalist and author — a job where I manage no one (autonomy), make my own rules (purpose), and have very concrete results (mastery) when my work is published.

When I made my leap, I discovered that while there are countless books and courses about how to be a better manager, there are pretty much no roadmaps for how to keep succeeding if you decide you don’t want to manage others. So, here are a few thoughts, based on my own experience, for others who feel that management may be wrong for them:

You Can Stay at Your Company, But Forge a New Path

Unlike me, perhaps you don’t have to leave. Talk to your bosses about your issues and partner with them to create a different track for yourself. For example, when my husband started as a young writer at Time magazine, there was only one career path — work hard as a staff writer, and eventually you might be promoted to senior editor. In the early 80s, Time created a position for those who did not want to go into management — “senior writer,” which came with internal prestige, and commensurate salary bumps.

This is something more companies need to address. To remain globally competitive, organizations need to devise innovative ways to encourage and reward creativity. The unorthodox titles embraced by start-ups — directors of fun, ministers of information — can seem ridiculous, but the emphasis on improvising new ways of doing business is important. Furthermore, research conducted by Office Team found that 76% of employees did not want their boss’s job. If employees are no longer responding to the old carrots, it’s time for companies to establish new means of rewarding talent.

You Can Find A Company That Shares Your Values

There are plenty of companies that are doing away with traditional corporate structures. For example, Michael Abrash, a member of the Valve software developer community, has a radical notion of corporate structure, where project teams coalesce and dissolve continually within an organization. He believes that fixed organizational structure impedes innovation. And plenty of other people feel the same. You may find yourself more in tune with an organization that has this type of flat hierarchy.

You Can Strike Out On Your Own

And of course, you can always forge your own path. Just be sure to think through the following before you take the leap:

  • Have a clear idea of what success means to you. It sounds obvious, but most of us unthinkingly internalize others’ definitions.
  • Know that income flow will have peaks and valleys. Few of us are lucky enough to land clients on retainer, so understand out of the box that your income will fluctuate from month to month.
  • Don’t quit without figuring out your monthly nut, especially including health care — and then figure out how you can reduce expenses. Make your nut fit the dream, and not the other way around. And don’t quit without a reserve to handle the times when there’s little or no monthly income — anticipate your worst-case scenario. Mine happened a few months after I’d quit my big job when my husband was fired from his well-paid (management) job.
  • Understand that as a freelancer, you will have to be a consummate sales-and-marketer of yourself and that you’ll have to develop thick skin to handle the rejection.
  • Know that there are days where you’ll feel lonely working by yourself. Fortunately, the networked world can mitigate this problem as never before.
  • Embrace the idea of moving from project to project as a way to learn and grow and stay relevant.

One thing that people who have left management may underestimate is the blow to self-esteem that can happen when you can no longer simply define with a title what it is that you do for a living. Although that’s changing in the emerging world of co-working, freelancing, and zig-zagging careers, titles still have meaning, and it requires clarity and courage to say “thanks, but no thanks” to that management position. But take it from me: being an ambitious round peg in a prestigious square hole is no way to spend a working life.

via HBR.org http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2012/12/what_if_you_dont_want_to_be_a.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+harvardbusiness+%28HBR.org%29

The OmniFocus Mail Drop


The last few days there has been something of a coming out party for early beta testers in Omni’s Mail Drop Service. So at this moment I can’t help but stand up and say, “My name is David, and I’m an Omni-holic.” The kind folks at the Omni Group let me start testing this quite awhile ago and it has been absolutely killing me that I couldn’t tell anyone about it. The way this service works is really simple.

1. You get a special, super-secret, email address and add it to your address book.

2. You forward any email worthy of an OmniFocus task to that address.

3. You move on with your day. At some point you’ll find yourself back in OmniFocus and you’ll find an new inbox entry with the text of the mail in the note. It actually happens in just minutes.

I’ve been using this for months and it works exactly how you’d expect it. The only downside is that it doesn’t give you a one-click link to jump to the mail message the way the Clip-O-Tron does on the Mac. Having used this for awhile though, I can say I miss that feature far less often than I thought I would.

Moreover, the ability to send emails to OmniFocus from my iPad and iPhone with nothing more than a forwarded email feels like nothing short of magic. You’ll need to be syncing your data through Omni’s servers to pull this off but, frankly, you should already be doing that anyway. At this point I recommend running here and getting in. It will change your game.


via MacSparky http://forums.omnigroup.com/showpost.php?p=118013&postcount=1

Daring Fireball: Why ‘The Daily’ Failed

Daring Fireball: Why ‘The Daily’ Failed.

John Gruber’s take on The Daily’s failure. Why The Daily failed as a business model and lack of focus, but succeeded as a subscription business.