Essential Web Apps for Lifestyle Designers

A big part of what defines lifestyle design, is having the freedom to work anywhere at any time.  In order to accomplish this, I've been making use of some great web based apps that allow this freedom.  Because hey, who wants to be tied to their PC?

The tools I've chosen are able to be used on multiple platforms (Mac, PC, iPhone) and are available no matter where I am.

Dropbox


Dropbox is like a virtual hard drive.  It puts all your files into the cloud, accessible anywhere!  I use it mainly for transferring files between devices - it works on Mac, PC and iPhone so I always have access.   You get 2gb for free, which is more than enough to store all my documents (which aren't on Google Docs).  I don't use it to store photos, as I think that would just chew up the space.

Google Docs


Honestly I can't imagine using Microsoft Word again.  After using Google Docs for a good year, I love the reduced feature set (you don't use 90% of the stuff in Word - nobody does!)  and the ability to have access to documents anywhere and on any machine is a killer feature for me.

Sharing documents is also a hell of a lot easier than having to email a word document (which is probably in the wrong format) and the revisions is much, much better than Words'.    If you're still using Word, give Google Docs a try.  Its free so you've got nothing to lose.

Skype


I use SkypeIn so I can give people an international number instead of my local mobile number.  I also use Skype to make international calls and to call home when travelling.  With WIFI access being available pretty much anywhere in the world, Skype is a much cheaper option to those international calling cards.

Before you start travelling, get the people you are going to call onto Skype. That way you can call Skype-to-Skype for free.

Evernote


Evernote is a hugely popular note taking application.  I use it to store all kinds of paper documents, which I scan into Evernote.  You can also clip web pages, spreadsheets, docs etc, or take a picture of a document and have it saved.  I'm on a quest to live with as little paper as possible and Evernote makes it easy.

My note taking process, usually involves a paper notepad and then saving the page to evernote.  The advantages of this is; 1, you don't need to lug around a stack of paper as you always have digital access to your notes and 2, evernote will actually recognise words within your notes so they can be searched.

So these are a few tools I have been using on a daily basis for the last year.  Which tools can you not live without?

Photo By - somefool ∴ Matt

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