Apps of the year 2013

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  • January 02, 2014

When I look back on 2013 and reflect over my favourite apps of the year there are a few that stand out. I will go over my favourites of 2013 in this post. Both for me personally, professionally and as a university student. There are some really good apps out there and most of them now have Google Chrome extension which I think bring a huge added value to the app. Although I came across and used so great apps this year I have got to say that my app of the year for 2013 both personally and professionally is Evernote.

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Evernote makes it easy to remember things big and small from your everyday life using your computer, phone, tablet and the web. I started using their free account but ended up using it so much that I upgraded to the Premium Account. What I love about it is how easily things sync between devices and how easily I can save notes and websites.

I use Evernote for to-do lists, writing shopping lists, keeping lists over things I have to pack and write down ideas for me to do. However I collect recipes into the Evernote Food app which is a cool extension to the Evernote Family.

Evernote has helped me a lot this year to develop as a professional. I write down ideas, create notebooks for different projects, keep me organised and if I get an idea while on the bus or the train I can put it into the appropriate note or notebook on my Evernote iPhone App. When I write articles I collect thoughts, other articles and ideas into a specific note for that article and base the article on the things I collected.
Another good app is the Evernote Hello app where I scan business cards from people I meet. That way my connections are organised and easy to find when needed.

The biggest difference for me as a university student now, as opposed to 3 years ago is reading & annotating .pdf documents in the Evernote App… especially using my iPad. It is also great to create a notebook for each course I’m in and and a note for each class I attend, attach audio and pictures to each note. This makes it so much more simple to go over the class content and have everything in one place, accessible at any moment. I recommend the Evernote Peek App if you are preparing for a test which requires you to remember facts.

I simply can’t say enough about how Evernote has made things more organised and effective both personally and professionally. Truly my app of the year.

five-stars

Other Apps that I love and recommend:

Twitter: If you are not on Twitter then you are missing out. I have connected with Educators both in Iceland and internationally this year with the power of Twitter and expanded my PLN (Personal Learning Network). It is a great tool to have a conversation with people, exchange ideas and grow professionally.

Zite and Pocket are two app from different developers but go great together. Zite is a mobile app which finds and presents news articles from around the world and customizes it to your preferences and likes. The thing is I don’t always have time to read all the great articles it presents to me every day and that is where Pocket (formerly known as Read It Later). I might have 15 minutes to go through the articles and save the ones that interest me the most into Pocket. They are stored there and neatly set up, without the ads or extra stuff so often on these websites/blogs. When I’m done reading I delete it from my reading list. This is so much better than keeping multiple tabs open on my browser until I’ve read the article.

1Second Everyday is an absolutely a wonderful idea from Cesar Kuriyama. In an age where we take 1000 of pictures every year and don’t have a clue how to store or share them in comes 1 Second Everyday. A great App where we can collect the everyday things and create a compilation of 1 second every day. I started this in June 2013 and it really encouraged me to do things I normally wouldn’t have and remember those little moments that make our life so special.

My 2013 in seconds:

Google Hangout is another app that made it possible for me to speak with my brother in Reykjavik, Mother in Akureyri and Father and Sister in Sauðárkrókur, Iceland all in the same call. Love it. Similar to both Skype and FaceTime (which I both love). FaceTime has better quality but Google Hangout edges the competition by allowing multiple users in the same call.

Bundlr is an application from a Portuguese company. With Bundlr you can create bundles with any kind of content: articles, photos, videos, tweets, quotes and links by simply pressing a button when browsing. Bundlr makes sure all your articles are in one place. What I love about it is its Embed feature which I use a lot on this website to keep articles I find organized and share them seamlessly with my blog.

Kindle is an essential app. I can’t say enough about its effect on how I find, buy books, read and keep notes. Absolutely fantastic to be able to access all my notes in my account on the Kindle/Amazon website (https://kindle.amazon.com/)

These are my favourite apps of the year. I look forward seeing what 2014 brings us but I have got to say we took a big step towards using technology more effectively both personally and professionally.

Ingvi Hrannar
Icelandic Elementary Teacher

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