#50 — My productivity setup: Apps I use every day

Things worth sharing each week

Hi there,

This week, I would like to share the productivity apps that I use every day.

Bear app is the master of everything. I store all notes and project files there. I organize all notes into nested tags, e.g. `#worldskills/2019/competition-week`, `#inspirations/typography`. A note can belong to different tags. This is a many-to-many structure alongside the 1-to-many structure between nested tags. This flexibility allows my notes to grow without losing control or losing focus on specific items.

I use Things to manage my tasks. These include work todos and project milestones. The subsection headings within projects allows me to divide a project into many small groups of tasks. That helps me a lot to focus on one aspect at a time to conquer the project.

While I may take quick text notes in Bear, iA Writer is my go-to app for long essays and books writing. Its typography and color syntax creates a joyful writing experience that’s similar to coding syntax highlight.

I do a lot of quick inputs to capture my fresh ideas along the day. The ideas are either in visual form or text form.

I use Dictate & Share workflow to quickly turn my speech into text and then I save the text into Bear for further editing and processing. Sometimes it is a speech to Things todo for quick capturing important tasks before I forget it.

For visual ideas, I use Memopad to scratch and save to Bear app. It is not like other drawing tools that let you organize sketches into folders. It is so minimal that you draw and it saves to photo library. That’s all. Every time you launch the app, it creates a blank canvas for you to draw. This is useful to capture my ideas in a very short time.

Sometimes I draw several sketches on the same topic, which I often merge them together into a single image before saving them as a Bear note. I use the Combine Images workflow to auto combine these visual ideas.

These are the apps that I use to empower my productivity days.

Quote for the week

The perfect is the enemy of the good.
— Voltaire.

Stuffs worth sharing

Learn → How CSS works?
I always tell my students that the beauty of CSS is the word Cascading.

Learn → Useful code editing techniques in editor
They are all important techniques to learn. If you already know some of the techniques, let’s learn the rest.

Productivity App → Retrobatch
This is a handy tool for batch images processing. I particularly like the screenshot to layered PSD feature that I can rearrange my windows before sharing it.

Tool → PurgeCSS
This is a tool to clean unnecessary CSS code. It can work as plugins in build-flow like Gulp. It can also works as a standalone CLI.

Productivity Read → Be fully open to the task
3 great tips to say bye to procrastination.

Read → The problem with curated photos on social media
A good read to honestly reflect our productivity hours are boring hours.

Until next week,
Thomas Mak