It may be hard to believe that anything to do with getting a stapler could be interesting. But these two are.
It may be hard to believe that anything to do with getting a stapler could be interesting. But these two are.
You need to build a web site? Consider Small Victories. As they say:
Small Victories takes files in a Dropbox folder and turns them into a website.
Best of all, they can help you build a variety of different sites, from a blog to a home page to e-commerce.
The site explains it very well, so visit Small Victories and see how it’s done.
Found via Swiss Miss. Thanks, Tina!
I think this is a terrible headline, which is too bad, because there is much to take away from this piece: How to stay sane when the world’s going mad | MIT Technology Review
There are tools and advice in there, including this:
- Notice when you are worrying, and be kind and compassionate to yourself. This is a difficult time; it makes sense that you might be more anxious.
- Focus on what’s in your control. Work out what is a hypothetical worry (you cannot do anything about it) and what is a real problem (needs a solution now).
- Refocus on the present moment. Focus on your breath, or on using your five senses.
- Engage in activities that you find meaningful and enjoyable. That could include music, walking, reading, baths, household tasks, or calls with friends and family.
- Notice and limit your worry triggers. If the news is making you anxious, limit your consumption.
- Practice gratitude. List the things you were grateful for that day: for example, “The sun was shining.”
- Keep a routine, and stay mentally and physically active.
This is actually a great looking set of tools to help you work from home: Eight apps to help you stay focused when working from home – The Globe and Mail
Normally when I see such a list — and there have been many — I see the same tools over and over again. Not with this list. Moreover, they are a diverse set of tools to help with various difficulties when you work from home.
Have a look. I’d be surprised if there isn’t one there you could use.
This tool seems pretty good. Using it right now.
This is a really good list of apps that will make you life and your work more productive: 17 Great Apps That’ll Make Your Life Easier.
I’ve used a number of them and have found them helpful. You may not use them all, but even adding 2 or 3 to your toolbox will make you better.
I’m a fan of mindmapping tools in general. One I’ve been using and enjoying lately is MindMup 2.
Two things I like about it:
Mindmup_2 is a good tool. Go map your thoughts.
We all get in ruts where we use the same tools every day for our office work. When that happens, what we need is someone to come along with a new list of tools and what makes them great.
Here is such a list. I didn’t create it, but I have used 3 of the 11 tools here and I can say they are key to making me more productive every day. I plan to use the rest of them too, based on the description of them.
Sure, you can do fine with Microsoft Office tools. This list will help you do better: 11 Most Used Tools & Apps Essential to my Work – DESK Magazine
(Image via pexels.com)
is this simple calendar:
A very effective way to motivate yourself to take on a new habit or break an old one.
For more on this, head over to Austin Kleon’s web site and this page: 30-day challenge
If you want a simple way to determine how many days until a certain date, or have a count down clock on your screen, consider the web site days.to. If you go to that link, you can see all the things you can do with the site. If you want to determine how many dates until a certain date, enter https://days.to/dd-month/year. For example, if you want to know how many days until January 1, 2020, enter: https://days.to/1-january/2020
Great little site!
If you are looking to build AI tech, or just learn about it, then you will find these interesting:
My new favorite productivity tool is this site: E.gg Timer – a simple countdown timer. Whenever I am procrastinating, I will use it to get myself to focus by starting it for 5, 10, or more minutes and telling myself: I will focus until the timer goes off. I have found this approach very effective, and this site helps me. It also helps because if I find myself going to my browser to mindlessly go on some time wasting site (hello, Twitter!) I will see this and I will remember to focus.
Fans of the pomodoro technique will see there is a special timer just for it.
As a bonus, you can use it to do a high intensity tabata workout.
Great tool. Highly recommended.
There are many tools to use for web performance testing, but if you want a good tool that does the job, I recommend Jmeter. The good and bad thing about JMeter is that there are alot of different options and features. To make it simpler for you, the good folks at Digital Ocean have a good tutorial on getting it set up, here: How To Use Apache JMeter To Perform Load Testing on a Web Server | DigitalOcean. While this is fine for testing one page, there are test scenarios where you want to have the user perform multiple steps (e.g. go to the home page, login to their account, check their account balance, then logout). If that is the case for you, too, then you want to read this next: How To Use JMeter To Record Test Scenarios | DigitalOcean (I used Firefox for this: if you are going to use JMeter to develop your performance test cases, then download Firefox too.) For any performance testing that follows a sequence, you really want to use the recording feature of JMeter.
Some other thoughts….
On my thread group, I added the following listeners:
I also login to the web server and tail -f the access log (and sometimes the error log).
I do all this because it is easy to run have a lot of errors when you first (and even later) run your test. For example, if you are testing a sequence, you might see good performance, but you might also see 404s in the access log, or you might see other anomalies in the aggregate report (e.g. good response 90% of the time, but bad response on average). Having more data is better and it insures you don’t have false positives (e.g., you think performance is good, but it really isn’t because the application is failing).
As soon as your developers have some code in place, have someone run Jmeter against it. Don’t wait until towards the end of the project. Jmeter is free and anyone can use it.
Back up your test plans often. It is easy to change your test plan, have it go from a successful one to an unsuccessful one because of the change, and then find it hard to go back because you changed a number of variables.
For your test plan, have multiple thread groups. This will allow you to test different test scenarios for different test groups. You can have different test plans too: it’s up to you how you manage it. For example, I recorded a long sequence for one test group, then I copied it and made a simple test group with less steps by removing them.
Of course you do: everyone does. Therefore check this out: Tools for a Safer PC — Krebs on Security.
And by here, I mean this site: Startup Stash – Curated resources and tools for startups. It is an amazing collection of tools you likely will need, for one thing. Plus, it has a superb user interface that not only groups the tools well, but gives you a sense of all the things you need to think about if you are going to go forward and create your own startup.
If you aren’t seriously thinking about startups, but would like to know about new tools to make you more productive at work, then I recommend you check out this site too.
Kudos to the creator of the site. Well worth a visit.
The folks at Buffer have put together a very big list of 100 tools, tips and tricks to work more efficiently online. I have gone over it and there are lots and lots of good tools and tips and other advice to help you be more productive and get the most out of being online. Stop wasting time on social media** and start being more productive by clicking on that link now.
** Reading this blog does not count as wasting time on social media. 🙂
The folks at this site have a number of tools to help with stress, including this: Equanimity Project: Online Meditation Timer.
If you can sit quietly at your desk for awhile, it may just be the thing to help you calm your mind and get back to a more peaceful state before you proceed with your day.
Chances are, if you talk to five different people at work, you will find five tools or techniques they use to be productive that you hadn’t even heard of.
Rather than do your own polling, you can also check out this article: Most Popular Apps Employees Use At Work – Business Insider.
Remember, these are just for work, and yes, Facebook still shows up there. And this is just the cloud / distributed services. (Also, I am wondering Evernote didn’t show up there.)
I would be surprised if you read it and didn’t adopt at least one of the items on the list by the end of your work day. Good luck.
If so, you know of all the …stuff…Word will add in there. I understand why Microsoft does it, but I would rather not have it. If you are in the same boat, I recommend you check out this site: Convert Word Documents to Clean HTML. It gives you the ability to take snippets of said HTML and clean it up for you.
It has it’s limits, but worth a look. Or to your tool box.
Yesterday was about ifttt. Today it is all about another great tool I highly depend on: Evernote. Evernote has become my go to tool for capturing information. (Bonus: it works great with ifttt). There are many great ways of using Evernote. If you are using it or planning to, here are at 10 for starters: 10 Tips On How to Use Evernote To Its Fullest « The Solopreneur Life®.
Please share any other tips you have. I find the one key tip I have for users of Evernote is this: the more you use it, the better it gets.
My new favourite app for beating procrastination is the 30/30 app from the good folks at binary hammer. I often find I get distracted from the list of things I have to do. With the 30/30 app, I can create a simple list of tasks, each with an amount of time to do them in. Once I start the list, the app shows me how much time I have to complete each item on the list. I can add if I want, or if I finish early, I can check it off (and the task moves down to the Completed section below the line). The result: I am better able to focus on the task list I have to do.
The app works on the iPad and the iPhone. The interface is superb. And it’s free! I highly recommend it.
For more on the app, you can go to the binary hammer web site (link above) or you can go here: 30/30 on the App Store on iTunes
Blogging is dead (so it is said). But I am still blogging, and happily so. Here’s why, here’s what I think has changed, and here’s what I do now.
I have been blogging a long time (since 2005). Over that time I have had blogs on Blogger, WordPress, Posterous, Tumblr, and on IBM’s hosted sites. I still blog on WordPress and IBM. (Posterous is gone, Tumblr feels less like blogging and more like social media sharing (great stuff, but not for me), and Blogger never could top WordPress for me.)
Blogging had it’s big moment in the early Web 2.0 days, and a number of bloggers went on to great success. Then more and different types of social media appeared, making blogging seemed dated and bloated. Even I dropped off blogging and started doing more with Twitter, Instagram, and more.
I have returned to blogging because it still has something that other social media lacks. It allows me to capture longer ideas, unlike other social media. It lets me go back and see what I was thinking about and doing years ago. Most social media is about the Now and about the Group, but blogging is more than that. Blogging extends in time, and starts (but doesn’t end) with me.
I was also incented by a number of small things. One, my blog traffic was declining, and I thought I would like to see if I could reverse it. I like the idea of people reading my blog, and I thought blogging again could improve the decline. Two, WordPress started paying me monthly for my blog traffic. It is a pittance: less than $6 a month. I have a goal to get it up higher than that. Three, I’d like to reach the goal of having a million views of my blog. I started the blog modestly, and I have been happy to see how it has grown. I’d like to hit that number.
Those are small incentives, though. A bigger incentive/goal is that writing my blog is Writing. Blogging is a good word, but what I really want to do is write and write better and eventually write well. Maintaining the blog helps with that goal.
(If your blog is mainly writing, consider saying you are Writing (not Blogging) when you are adding to your blog. A blog is a web log, but if you are trying to do something more than just log things — and you likely are — why not elevate what you are doing by labelling it with a better label?)
How I blog now:
Unlike many smart bloggers I follow, I tend not to write long form posts. When I do, I write them in Microsoft Word, mainly because if my machine hangs up or reboots or does any number of stupid things, I will not lose what I have written thanks to Word’s superb autosave feature. Once it is good enough (by my meagre standards), I will copy and paste it into WordPress.