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10 Awesome Alfred Actions to Speed Up Your Day

10 Awesome Alfred Actions to Speed Up Your Day


    Alfred

    is more than an application launcher for your Mac, though I bet that’s what most Alfred users do most often—I’m certainly no exception. A quick command-space, type what I’m looking for, tap enter, done. But there is so, so much more that you can do. In fact I learn more things to do the more I use it. But to get you started here are my top 10 tips and Alfred actions…

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    1. Powerpack Alfred App – Powerpack. Yes, the free version of Alfred is great, more than half of my favorite things to do with it are core to the free version. The thing is that some of the most useful shortcuts come with the Powerpack.
    2. System commands. Need to quickly lock your machine to step away? How about empty the trash without your hands moving to the mouse? Oh yes, all of these and more are right at your fingertips with Alfred. You can even change the default commands so if “emptytrash” is too pedestrian you could use “eradicate”. If “shutdown” doesn’t work, maybe “abort”. They are your commands…do as you wish.
    3. File searches. Sure Spotlight is great and doing a search in a Finder window when you’re in a Finder window is convenient, but what if you aren’t? Start with “find” and Alfred will search through all your files or use “in” and Alfred will search within your files instead. Found what you’re looking for? Email it, open it, go to it, even delete it. Pretty much just control it.
    4. Searching the web. Sure it’s simple, but just start your Google (or other engine) search with a couple taps and your fingers barely have to leave the keyboard. Oh, and it’s not just Google, it’s Bing, Yahoo!, Amazon, eBay, IMDb, even your Gmail and Google Docs, and even more.
    5. Calculator. Quick what’s (3+4)/2*8+10? Yeah, with Alfred you start with the “=” (enable the advanced calculator in the preferences) type it in and the result is there to copy (38 is the answer).
    6. Spelling. Look up definitions or find the right spellings in a few seconds.
    7. Clipboard (PP only). This is my fav of all the Powerpack add-ons, built in clipboard history. And with Alfred 1.2 you can now append to the current clipboard item and then paste that. You can even save snippets of things (like in TextExpander) that you wind up using often.
    8. Address Book (PP). Look up people in your by just typing their name. Then copy info to the clipboard or email them. Right there.
    9. Email (PP). Speaking of email, you can start emails right from Alfred too. Oh and with the myriad different file actions you can do, emailing a document to someone is never more than a few taps away.
    10. 1Password (PP). This is another new feature in Alfred 1.2 for Powerpack users. If you use 1Password start with 1p then start typing the service you’ve saved a password for…select, enter, and your browser opens and logs you in.

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      You can download Alfred either through the Mac App Store or directly through the website (which is the course I’d recommend actually) and while the features included for free are, well, awesome, the real fun comes with spending a little coin, £15 (about $25 US/CAD) gets you the Powerpack, which ramps up Alfred to a whole new level of awesome.

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      Frankly, even pulling together this top 10 list I found another half dozen Alfred actions I want to try. Like opening the last files a particular app opened or navigating through the file system or launching URLs or controlling iTunes. Alfred is one of those apps that is awesome for the moment you start using it—and then it just keeps getting better from there.

      (Photo credit: Man in Bowler Hat by Wonderlane via Flickr)

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      Last Updated on May 28, 2020

      18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2020 Updated)

      18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2020 Updated)

      No one can dispute the countless benefits technology has brought us. Undoubtedly, it has allowed us to connect, perform, improve, and leverage our resources beyond what was once imaginable.

      If you’re not taking advantage of some of the hundreds of time management apps and tools out there, you’re definitely missing a trick.

      But with so many apps to choose from, how do you know which ones to use?

      Well, this will depend on your needs. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 18 of the best time management apps that can help you with the most common challenges of managing time.

      Let’s dive straight into the list.

      1. Rescue Time – Use Your Time Wisely

        If you have doubts if you are using your time sensibly, this app will send you weekly reports to indicate what things are stealing your time. Aside from its automatic time-tracking feature, this app also has distraction blocking and efficient report tools.

        RescueTime helps you avoid being overwhelmed by too many tasks. This app also has a team software that’s dedicated to time management among team members. With this app, you may be shocked to discover how much time you’re actually wasting.

        Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

        2. Remember The Milk – Keep on Top of All Your Tasks

          If you’re struggling to manage everything you have to do, and you work with many different devices, then this is the app for you. It’s a great free tool that is compatible with your mobile, computer, Gmail, Outlook, etc., and it allows you to sync all your devices for easier time management.

          This app will help you to manage your tasks easily and reminds you of them – wherever you are. You can share tasks and lists with others, making it a great tool for teams as well.

          Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

          3. Focus Keeper – Boost Motivation to Complete Tasks

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            This app is based on the principles of the Pomodoro Technique, and it is aimed at individuals who procrastinate and feel overwhelmed by tasks. It has a simple, efficient user interface that is easily customizable based on your needs.

            Focus Keeper is designed to enhance your focus and remove any anxiety you might have with time pressures. This is a great app to use if you want to prevent yourself and your team from being burned out.

            Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

            4. Toggl – Keep Track of Time Spent on Projects and Tasks

              Effective time management starts with being clear on exactly how much time you actually spend on your projects and tasks and through analysis – working out how you can manage them more effectively. Toggl allows you to do all this even with its simple design.

              Toggl includes great time-saving features integrated with its intuitive interface. This is a great alternative to time-sheets if you need to track how much time you spend on different projects.

              Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

              5. Dropbox – Store and Send Large Files Easily

                There are many apps that allow you to transfer content from your computer to other devices, but Dropbox is free and it is easier to use than the others. With the Dropbox app, you can even access and share important files on the go. It is an easy way to share your files and documents with others for improved productivity.

                Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                6. Evernote – Keep All Your Notes in One Place

                  Evernote is a free productivity tool that allows you to capture all your ideas, thoughts, and images in many different ways (e.g., with voice, notes, or images). You can even record your meetings, interviews, speeches, and ideas, create lists, add voice or text attachments, and share your files with friends. You can also sync Remember The Milk with Evernote to better optimize your time.

                  Available iOS, Android, and Desktop

                  7. MindNode — Focus on Tasks at Hand With Mind Mapping

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                    Mind mapping is a great productivity technique, and Mindnode is one of the best free mind mapping apps available. It helps you to become more organized by focusing your thoughts – thereby gaining clarity on what needs to be done.

                    This app allows you to customize various visual tags and templates to suit your needs. You can also easily share your documents with others.

                    Available on iOS and Desktop

                    8. GoodSync – Back Up and Sync Your Files Effortlessly

                      This software allows you to back up, restore, and synchronize your files easily. It supports folders from a variety of locations, and it has filtering options that let you exclude subfolders from synchronizing.

                      This app also allows you to sync files to and from your phone. If you have never backed up your files before, you should definitely take a look at this tool.

                      Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                      9. MyLifeOrganized (MLO) – Manage Your To-Do Lists Effectively

                        Check this out if you find it difficult to manage all your tasks, work with your to-do lists, and organize your goals. This task management software helps you target what you should be focusing on to reach your objectives.

                        MyLifeOrganized is one of the best task management apps for focused work. It automatically generates to-do lists with priority actions for your immediate attention so that you can track your progress methodically.

                        Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                        10. 1Password – Have All Your Passwords Remembered

                          1Password allows you to keep all your passwords in one encrypted database – protected by one password. This saves you time when you forget your passwords and need to retrieve them. This also allows you to use various passwords for different accounts so you don’t compromise on security.

                          Available iOS, Android, and Desktop

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                          11. Pocket – Keep Your Eye on the Ball

                            When you’re surfing the web, it’s easy to get distracted by enticing and fascinating websites. That’s why you need effective time management apps like Pocket. You can use this tool to save your ‘finds’ to access and read later on at a convenient time. This prevents you from getting distracted and negatively impacting your immediate work.

                            Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                            12. Focus@Will – Boost Your Attention Span

                              This amazing app combines neuroscience and music to boost your productivity. According to the developers, it’s possible to increase your attention span by up to 400% using Focus@Will, making this one of the best time management apps available.

                              Focus@will is ideal for those who find it difficult to focus while studying, working, or reading. It also helps you control your ADD.

                              Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                              13. Alfred – Interact With Your Computer in a Smart Way

                                This small and simple tool allows you to launch your documents, project files, folders, and bookmarks with just a few keystrokes. This makes life so much easier as you don’t need to go through the start menu to access what you want. The only downside is that it’s only available for macOS.

                                Available on desktop (macOS)

                                14. Forest – Boost Your Focus by Growing a Forest

                                  Forest is a unique reinvention of time management apps. This unique and fun app helps you stay focused and on-track by making you focus on another thing.

                                  The concept is simple: whenever you want to focus, plant a virtual tree. If you stay focused, the tree will grow. If you lose focus, the tree will die. As the app’s name implies, you can grow multiple trees to create a virtual forest!

                                  Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop (Firefox Add-on)

                                  15. Trello – Track Your projects in a highly visual way

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                                    Trello is a hugely popular app that you may already be familiar with. It works by allowing you to create cards for tasks that you need to complete. Each card moves across the Trello board, which is typically broken into columns such as To Do, In Progress, and Completed. This serves as your cue to start working on and completing the associated tasks.

                                    Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                    16. Quire – Unfold Your Ideas

                                      Quire is an innovative time management app that helps boost your team’s productivity. The strength of this app lies in its features for collaboration and ease of sharing. You can streamline and adjust your workflow based on your team’s needs and preferences.

                                      Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                      17. TimeTree – Have a Shared Calendar With Your Family

                                        This TimeTree app allows families or teams to share multiple calendars and appointments with each other. So, whether you’re planning a party or running a local sports team, Time Tree can keep everyone up-to-date with all current and upcoming activities and events.

                                        Available on iOS and Android

                                        18. Todoist – Capture and Order All Your Tasks and Activities Easily

                                          Todoist is close to being the ultimate digital to-do list and one of the best time management apps out there. It’s available via browser and app, and it lets you schedule all your tasks and activities. Each item can be flagged for priority as well as a given due date. There is also a neat option to add notes to any of your tasks.

                                          Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                          Final Thoughts

                                          The above list covers what we consider to be the very best time management apps and tools available. And the good news is that many of them are completely free of charge!

                                          So, what are you waiting for? Select the ones that will be the most valuable to you, and begin boosting your productivity now!

                                          More Productivity and Time Management Apps

                                          Featured photo credit: freestocks via unsplash.com

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