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by Marc A. Kastner |


Just added a small microblogging section to my website. I plan to post shorter form stuff or links once in a while.

So far, the majority of content on Productived has been long in-depth articles like app reviews. Sometimes I feel, I can’t update the website as often as I want to because the materials take too much time to prepare.

Hopefully, the microblogging section is a valuable addition to ensure more quickly and more regularly updates. I will mostly share some smaller thoughts and links related to productivity.

Everything posted here will be cross-shared to Social Media.

by Marc A. Kastner |


MORE INTERESTING STUFF

A close look at the task management beast OmniFocus 3

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OmniFocus entered its third release cycle with the release of OmniFocus 3 for iOS.

The app became one of the most prominent task management suites on the Apple ecosystem. It is an often recommended solution for to-do, especially if investing in Getting Things Done workflows.

However, it also comes with a relatively high price and a learning curve. Is OmniFocus worth the effort, and can the solution help you with your productivity needs? I’ll go through all the features in detail and let you decide what you think about them.

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Notebooks with audio recording and OCR in Notability

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When going digitally with your paperless workflows and the Apple Pencil, the need for a great note-taking tool comes pretty soon. The Pencil is a great piece of hardware, but its built-in iPad apps feel pretty lacking.

Notability comes with more features: The note-taking app optimized for the Apple Pencil can work with loose pages of notes, lecture slides, books, and virtually anything convertible to the PDF format. Your annotation will get indexed and are searchable through handwriting recognition (so-called OCR.)

It also features some rather unique audio recording tools, which allow you to record a meeting while taking notes on it. Later, you can watch the note-taking process as a video while listening to the recording.

I take a look at this app, to see how it compares to other applications when comparing things like the look-and-feel of handwriting, and more.

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My thoughts on OmniFocus 2 versus 3

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And there it comes, a new major release for OmniFocus: The task management suite which is available since 2008 gets into its third release cycle. The predecessor is award winning and one of the most recommended productivity suites for the Apple ecosystem. So, what’s it all about?

I have been a regular user of OmniFocus for many years (since OF1 days,) so I’ve seen many iterations and new feature upgrades. The version 3 comes with many new features and an updated look-and-feel.

I have been testing the new version since the beginning of closed beta and discuss some thoughts on how OmniFocus 3 improves over 2.

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Get nagging reminders and timers with Due App

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There is an important document to hand in, so you create a reminder for it. Unfortunately, it pops up once, while you do something different, and there is goes. Next, it is already to late, as it got forgotten or buried below other notifications.

Due is an app which tries to solve this and similar issues. Despite its generic and hard-to-Google name, it tries to find its own niche. It focuses solely on ways to literally remind you: With nagging repeating reminders every few minutes, customization for alerts, and more.

I take a look at this app to see in which niche it fits and why you should consider dropping your money on it.

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Make handwritten notes with text search in GoodNotes 4

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When digitally taking handwritten notes, it is easy to lose track of notebooks and documents. Stuff can simply get lost in large digital archives, and are hard to be tracked. Unlike typed documents, most applications won’t allow for indexing handwritten documents.

GoodNotes 4 comes to rescue. With a great text detection engine which even supports handwritten input, it can make all handwritten notes searchable. Even better: Exported documents have this information attached, so things can be filed away into other applications with peace of mind. This makes GoodNotes a great solution for taking handwritten notes in a paperless environment.

I take a look at this app and analyze how it can compete to other applications, how it is implemented and if it is worth your money.

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Annotate PDFs and notes at once in Flexcil

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Flexcil is an underdog in the group of annotation apps for the iPad. While rather new, it comes with some novel approach and fresh wind.

Everybody knows this situation: You work with a PDF, like literature or lecture slides, but then, you also want to take a couple of notes on the side in a notebook. Ideally, everything in digital. But, when having a PDF annotation app and another app for digital note-taking side-by-side, the multi-tasking capabilities of an iPad soon hit their limits.

Using Flexcil, you can work on multiple documents at once with an overlay interface. It supports dragging elements from your PDF to a notebook, and taking valuable notes in a scratchbook while still looking at the slides or book; all without leaving the app or using multi-tasking.

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Create a virtual noteshelf with Noteshelf 2

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One of many usages of the iPad for productivity is the use of the Apple Pencil to take handwritten notes. Whether in meetings, lectures, or for simple brainstorming, having handwritten notes in a digital way is a handy way to archive notes and have them on the go with you all the time.

Noteshelf 2 is yet another competitor in the area of note-taking apps for the iPad. Utilizing the Apple Pencil, this app promises to be a good replacement for your traditional notebook.

I take a look at this app and analyze how it can compete to other applications, how it is implemented and if it is worth your money.

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