My latest at ProfHacker: Tools for an Effective Workflow

Flowing waterMany of us have favorite tools that suit our workflows well, helping us accomplish our tasks and keep track of needed bits of information. Below you’ll find a list of applications, services, and utilities that I use almost daily.

  1. Workflow. I a big fan of ToDoist, my preferred Task Manager. For the way I work, it’s a better option than Apple’s Reminders. The catch is that it doesn’t integrate with Siri, which is really handy for adding items on the go. To get around that problem, I use the workflow Henry Bourne describes here. I can use Siri to create tasks on the go during the day, then just run the workflow once each evening to send those tasks to ToDoist.
  2. Thanks to Lincoln’s introductions to Markdown and Pandoc, I do most of my writing in plain text these days (my preferred editor is Sublime Text 3). But I also like to keep a copy of my work in Evernote, so that it’s easily searchable. That makes the Evernote package for Sublime 3 really useful for me.
  3. I like to keep up on news of all sorts, and Reeder, makes it simple to find the most important stories for me to read each day. It’s very easy to share items that I want to save for reference to Evernote, or to Pocket for things that I don’t have time to read at the moment, but want to read later. If I find something worth sharing, I can quickly send it to Twitter or Facebook.

  4. I don’t like getting work-related emails late in the evenings or on weekends, and I suspect my colleagues don’t, either. Sometimes, though, I need to send an email, and it’s most efficient for me to write it while I’m thinking about it (otherwise, I’ll have to take time to add it to my to-do list with a reminder and the time to write it!). So I use RightInbox to schedule such messages to be sent at the beginning of the next business day.

  5. Text expansion is a wonderful thing (something we’ve noted here before). I do a lot of typing and there are some blocks of text (e.g., paper marking comments, routine emails to users of a WordPress installation that I manage) that I need to use repeatedly. TypeIt4Me is great for calling up those snippets of text with just a few keystrokes. (I soured on TextExpander after their recent move to a subscription model.)

  6. Finally, I like to make sure my personal website has new content on a fairly regular basis, but I don’t currently have a lot of time to create that content. An IFTTT recipe ensures my ProfHacker posts get cross-posted to my own site.

What tools help you manage your workflow effectively? Let us know in the comments.

CC-licensed image by Flickr user SB Archer

from ProfHacker » Amy CavenderProfHacker – Blogs – The Chronicle of Higher Education

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