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30 Killer Apps that will Make You Smarter

30 Killer Apps that will Make You Smarter

Nowadays you can have more than just fun with your apps – you can also use them to become smarter. Here are 30 apps you can use to help your memory, challenge your IQ, and help you to expand your brain.

Tools To Lead A Smarter Life

1. Casual

1000-1000

    Casual helps handle tasks and projects in a new way: the app is amazingly visual. You plan your tasks just by drawing them as a flowchart. Casual is a unique app that helps visualize dependencies between tasks. You don’t have to click on tabs to find out about certain aspects of projects, such as who is doing which tasks. You can try this app for free to see if it works for you.
    Download links: Web-Based

    2. Fooducate

    fooducate

      Why is it that good food looks so terrible and junk food looks so good? With this free app, you can find the good food that actually tastes good, so you can eat healthy and like it. Scan items for nutritional information, and find out which foods are the best for you, the best buys, and of course, the most enjoyable.
      Download links: Android | iOS

      3. Cloudswave

      cloudswave

        Become a smart spender: get all of the software and web applications for your business and your personal life. This free app directory allows you to get the best deals on all of the software and apps you need. On Cloudswave you will also find the Cloudscore, a rating based on carefully selected Expert Reviews computed to help you capture the essence of critical opinion in a single number.
        Download links: Web-Based

        4. Owl

        owl

          Do you love to astound your friends with oddball facts? Get all of the fun and off-beat trivia you can handle with Owl, a free app that gives you one fun fact each day. Become smarter with interesting facts you never heard of.
          Download links: iOS

          5. Atlas by Collins

          atlas

            The Atlas by Collins lets you travel all around the world, with a flick of your finger. As well as seeing new places, you can also discover incredible information about the world’s most important places and artifacts. Learn about the world using nine globes, a variety of maps, and other fun tools for just $0.99.
            Download links: iOS

            6. iBooks

            ibooks-iphone-100607

              Reading is a means of thinking with another person’s mind; it forces you to stretch your own. But you may think you don’t have time to read. Do you ride the train to work? Read on the train. Do you have breaks? Read on your breaks. There really is no excuse when you have the free iBooks app, with a huge library that is constantly growing.
              Download links: iOS

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              7. Flipboard

              flipboard-iphone

                Are you always the last to know what is going on in the world around you? Start being the one who tells others what is going on by using the free Flipboard app, with tap and touch controls that makes it easy to get news as it’s happening.
                Download links: Android | iOS

                8. SmartThings

                smart

                  A smart home for smart people. Control all of the devices in your home with the easy-to-use SmartThings app that turns your smartphone into a remote.
                  Download links: Android | iOS

                  Mind Games

                  9. Circles Memory Game

                  circles_iphone_hero

                    Your memory affects your ability to quickly and easily retrieve and apply stored information in situations when you need to solve a problem – and your ability to solve problems is often defined as intelligence. Therefore, memory and intelligence are almost like two sides of the same coin. Not only can you improve your memory, but you will also be supporting Alzheimer’s research by getting this $0.99 app. You’ll have fun too.
                    Download links: Android | iOS

                    10. Lumosity Mobile

                    lumi

                      Train your brain to become smarter, and have a blast doing it! Side effects of using this app include improved memory, a longer attention span, and better work performance through fun games and puzzles, and it doesn’t cost anything to use.
                      Download links: Android | iOS

                      11. Personal Zen

                      persona;

                        Smart people can control their stress. Personal Zen is clinically proven to reduce stress by JUST playing a fun game. Built by a team of leading neuroscientists and mobile developers, playing Personal Zen actually retrains your brain to lower stress and anxiety.
                        Download links: iOS

                        12. Fit Brains Trainer

                        br

                          Research shows that online training is an effective way to build cognitive reserve and increase brain performance. Fit Brains Trainer is free and you can increase your short-term memory by as much as 40% in less than three weeks. Wait…what were we just talking about? Obviously, we need this!
                          Download links: Android | iOS

                          13. Brain Workshop

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                          brain

                            If you are like some of us who still don’t have mobile phones, don’t despair. There are apps for us too. Brain Workshop is a free desktop app that you can use to improve your brain power, and no cell phones are necessary. But for those who has an Android phones, there is an app on Google Play!
                            Download links: Android

                            14. Math Genius Brain Trainer

                            minute

                              Unless you planned on working in a math-oriented field, you probably hated math classes as much as we did. Math develops critical thinking and problem-solving skills—it makes you smarter. This free app lets you play math games that will help improve your skills without making you bored.
                              Download links: iOS

                              15. Clockwork Brain

                              clock

                                Puzzles, puzzles, and more puzzles! Studies have shown that “mental aerobics,” such as solving puzzles, are an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Learning was never so much fun, and you will actually get addicted to improving your brain power with this free app.
                                Download links: iOS

                                16. Memory Trainer

                                mem

                                  Puzzle games alone are not the only one that can make you smarter. If you are an Android user, you can enjoy this app that really makes you use your brain to remember things. The best part is that it is fun, and you get to play matching games.
                                  Download links: Android

                                  17. Eidetic

                                  eidetic

                                    To show that you are smart, you need to memorize interesting and important words and facts. Eidetic is another app that will help your memory through special memory-boosting exercises, and it only costs $0.99.
                                    Download links: iOS

                                    18. The New York Times Crossword

                                    cross

                                      Crosswords make you smarter. They make you think in different ways, attack problems in different ways, and expand your vocabulary. Just playing the crossword puzzles can improve your intelligence. This free app has the same crossword puzzles that are published every day in the newspaper.

                                      Download links: iOS

                                      19. mTrainer Pro

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                                      placeit

                                        Giving your brain new experiences will keep it healthier and sharpen your mind. This is a gym that won’t make you break out in a sweat. Instead, you can try some fun brain exercises for just $1.99.
                                        Download links: iOS

                                        20. Blocks

                                        blocks

                                          Be a kid again and play with blocks, only these blocks will improve your brain power. You need to move the pieces to get out, and you need to use logic to do it with this app that costs only $2.99.
                                          Download links: iOS

                                          21. Brain Trainer Special

                                          brain

                                            This is a collection of games that Android users can use to help them to remember phone numbers, solve math problems, and more, and it’s absolutely free to use. Available game modes: math ninja, letter sequences, number sequences, memory trainer (pictures), speedy shapes, memory letters, memory numbers, tricky colors, memorize 123, 3D CUBES, target mode, phone numbers, question mode, 18 session modes…sudoku of course and other modes like puzzle.
                                            Download links: Android

                                            22. Critical Thinking University Think-O-Meter

                                            critical

                                              Get hypothetical situations, study them, and then get quizzed on what you remember with this free app that helps you become smarter.
                                              Download links: iOS

                                              Time Management Apps

                                              23. Toggl

                                              toggl

                                                Time management is a common sore spot among many intelligent people. Where does your time go? You can find out by using this app. You simply tell the app what you are doing, start the timer, and stop it when you are finished. You will be able to better manage your time with this app, and the basic version is free. If you want all of the features, it is just $5 per month.
                                                Download links: Android | iOS

                                                24. RescueTime

                                                RescueTime_AndroidApp

                                                  Work is boring, and social media websites are fun. But, you may be spending too much time socializing, and not enough time working. This app, which costs just $9 per month for the premium version, lets you see how much time you are spending with various websites and applications. Track how long you spend on reading useful information and extend this time.
                                                  Download links: Android | iOS

                                                  25. My Minutes

                                                  My Minutes

                                                    Wasting too much time on certain tasks? Spend your time smarter and use My Minutes for free to set time limits for everything you do.
                                                    Download links: Android | iOS

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                                                    26. Timesheet

                                                    time

                                                      You don’t even have to lift a finger to type for tracking and billing work hours. Simply tell it what to do with voice commands. Great for those who love telling others what to do.
                                                      Download links: Android

                                                      27. Eternity

                                                      eternity

                                                        Inner balance is one of the crucial features of modern intelligent person. Work, home, kids, fun –  it all takes your time, and you need to balance it. Eternity lets you categorize everything you do and create a balance for just $4.99.
                                                        Download links: iOS

                                                        28. Now Then

                                                        now

                                                          Categorize things you do smartly. Now Then helps you record and analyse what you spend your time doing. Identify misused time for $2.99.
                                                          Download links: iOS

                                                          29. ATracker

                                                          2-iphone-right

                                                            Track everything you do, so you always know what to do and when to do it with this app, for $4.99. ATracker creates beautiful reports in pie chart and bar chart which you can share via Facebook, Twitter and email. You can also export data in CSV format.

                                                            Download links: iOS

                                                            30. Timely

                                                            timely

                                                              Who did what – when? Or who’s doing what – when? Either way, you’ll know the answer. Helps you plan for new projects, delegate work to employees and see who’s got too much on their plate.
                                                              Download links: iOS

                                                              Featured photo credit: Tom via flickr.com

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                                                              Jane Hurst

                                                              Writer, editor

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                                                              Published on November 9, 2018

                                                              How to Improve Your Computer Skills to Get Ahead in Your Career

                                                              How to Improve Your Computer Skills to Get Ahead in Your Career

                                                              Technology has taken the business world by storm. People and businesses are progressively reliant on technology world these days. As a result, the people with impressive knowledge and experience with a computer are in demand.

                                                              Considering this growing market trend, if you too wish to bag a profitable job, this article is apt for you. Here, we will dig deeper into the business and technology world to look into what are the best computer skills one should invest in and what resources to get help from.

                                                              So, are you ready? Here we begin.

                                                              6 Most-In Demand Computer Skills This Year (and Beyond)

                                                              When talking about computer skills, following are the 6 computer skills that can fill your mailbox with endless job opportunities (besides, having an English and Hindi typing speed of 40+ WPM):-

                                                              1. Spreadsheets and Databases

                                                              Considering the treasure trove of data companies are handling these days, Spreadsheet and Database management skill tops the list. It is considered the most wanted job skill in the market, with a salary of around $53,129/yr for an entry-level position. However, the spreadsheet skill does not confine to auditing data from cells.

                                                              To get hired based on this computer skill, you need to become a Spreadsheet ninja. From storing data to organizing them, applying complex mathematics formulas, and creating complex macros, you need to be an expert at all.

                                                              In other words, you need to have an expertise at working with:

                                                              • Microsoft Excel
                                                              • Microsoft Access
                                                              • Statistics
                                                              • Data Analytics
                                                              • Adobe Campaign
                                                              • Quickbooks
                                                              • XML Database management system
                                                              • Filemaker Pro
                                                              • MATLAB
                                                              • Hive
                                                              • FORTRAN
                                                              • RDBMS (Relational Database Management System)
                                                              • SAS

                                                              2. Social Media, Email, and Blogging

                                                              Though people are socially active, not everyone knows how to use the social media tools on the professional front. In such a scenario, having an expertise at writing engaging yet professional emails, writing blogs, and managing social media activities is a ticket to entry in reputed organizations.

                                                              Some of the skills related to social media, email and blogging that will have a leg up in the hiring process are:

                                                              • Content Management System (CMS)
                                                              • Google Analytics
                                                              • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
                                                              • Email Marketing
                                                              • Web Page Design
                                                              • WordPress
                                                              • Digital Media
                                                              • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
                                                              • Campaign Management Software

                                                              3. Graphic Design and Word Processing

                                                              A solid grasp of skills to present the gained information in the much readable form is another market need. When considering this computer skill category, you need to enhance your skills at:

                                                              • Adobe Photoshop
                                                              • Adobe InDesign
                                                              • Adobe Illustrator
                                                              • AutoCAD
                                                              • CorelDRAW
                                                              • Microsoft Visual Studio
                                                              • Maya
                                                              • Microsoft Word
                                                              • Microsoft Publisher
                                                              • Operating Digital Cameras

                                                              4. Software and Hardware Design and Development

                                                              The Software and Hardware development, in simpler language, means designing, implementing, and testing the computer software/hardware applications. It is the most profitable computer skill, with a different job opening, including Software Architect, Software Analyst, Software programmer, Hardware configuration, etc.

                                                              To be capable of developing and testing the software and hardware, you need to peruse your users’ needs and build an application that hits their pain points. You need to work with different web and mobile app coding languages for gaining the attention of your audience, some of which are:

                                                              • HTML
                                                              • C/C++
                                                              • Java
                                                              • Python
                                                              • XML
                                                              • UI/UX
                                                              • LINUX
                                                              • CISC and RISC architecture
                                                              • Embedded Processor Hardware Design
                                                              • Memory Management
                                                              • PCB Layout
                                                              • SQL

                                                              5. IT Troubleshooting

                                                              Working on computers is one thing and having a knack of looking into the associated issues and resolving them in real-time is another. There are various employees and graduates who work with computer systems in their daily lives, but get confused when it comes to dealing with frozen programs and performing routine maintenance.

                                                              So, if you are familiar with the basic anatomy of computers and machines and know the tricks to perform such tasks to streamline the working process, enter the IT support arena. The prime IT troubleshooting skills one needs to work upon are:

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                                                              • Backup management
                                                              • Diagnostics
                                                              • End User support
                                                              • Client-Server management
                                                              • Installation and configuration
                                                              • Issue tracking system (ITS)
                                                              • System administration
                                                              • Tech support

                                                              6. Enterprise Systems

                                                              Many Enterprises have their own enterprise solutions like PeopleSoft for managing their data and operations.

                                                              Becoming a master at using the enterprise solutions mentioned in their ‘Requirements’ area can also lessen the barrier to get a job.

                                                              The Roadmap to Excel Your Computer Skills

                                                              Now that you know the 6 most popular computer skills in the market, the first decision, you need to take is which computer skill you want to work upon. All the skills are equally considerable for making a career ahead. So, choose one as per your interest.

                                                              Once done, look forward to the following resources for boosting your computer skills and getting a reputed, handsome job.

                                                              Depending on the computer skill you opt, here are the online courses you can turn to for elevating your career opportunities:

                                                              1. Become a Spreadsheet and Database Ninja

                                                              a. Microsoft Excel Training Online Course – Basic & Advanced

                                                              Whether you are a beginner, intermediate or expert at working with spreadsheets, this online course has something new for everyone to become excel efficient users.

                                                              Divided into 48 interesting lessons, the course empowers you to learn the technique of using mathematical, statistical, logical and text functions, sorting and filtering the data, creating Pivot Tables, building macros, finding a value with VLOOKUp, and much more.

                                                              b. Excel- Online Courses, Classes, Training, Tutorials on Lynda

                                                              This is another impressive course to unlock the power of Excel. Designed for people from all walks of life and familiarity with Excel tools. This course helps you gain in-depth knowledge from the experts about this data-analyzing tool and make the magic in spreadsheet creation and management process.

                                                              c. SQL & Database Design A-Z™: Learn MS SQL Server + PostgreSQL

                                                              Build a successful career in the data analytics world with this online course.

                                                              Revolving around the two top databases, MS SQL and PostgreSQL, this course will give you a comprehensive knowledge of the working of the databases and understanding of all the related elements, including how to create, update, organize, and safeguard the data.

                                                              2. Rule the Social Media World

                                                              a. Free Social Media Course by HubSpot

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                                                              Introduced by the top experienced inbound professors from Hubspot, here you will get a comprehensive knowledge of Social media marketing.

                                                              From understanding how to build relationships on different social media platforms to creating a perfect strategy to engage them, leveraging the benefits of social advertising, and analyzing your social media ROI, this course will bring out the best out of you.

                                                              b. Write Professional Emails in English by Coursera

                                                              This online course will be the right weapon to look into the differences and similarities between different email styles, improve your English writing skills, write effective subject lines, maintain the formality tone in emails, and more to make a powerful impact on the receivers with your email.

                                                              c. Ninja Writing: The Four Levels of Writing Mastery

                                                              Founded by Udemy, this online course will excel your skills to build a masterpiece everytime you write.

                                                              Here, you will get the guidance from the editors of the top newspapers and websites, and understand what kind of words and tone to use for leaving a spellbinding impact on the readers.

                                                              3. Launch Your Own Software or Hardware Equipment

                                                              a. Hardware and Software Courses by Coursera

                                                              From Big Data to IoT, Sensor Circuit Design, Embedded Software and Hardware Architecture, and Motor Control Circuit, this course will give you a glimpse of all the hardware devices, equipment, and programming languages to build wonders.

                                                              b. Free Software and Web Development Certifications Online by Alison

                                                              Become the software developer market demands with Alison’s Java, C#, Python, R, PHP, or MySQL database course. From backend to frontend development and software testing.

                                                              The course helps you to learn how to design, develop and test software and working in a team while contributing to the team success.

                                                              c. Free Online Software Development and MOOCs Course by Class Central

                                                              The Class Central online course will make you a master of software development. Here, you will learn the basic concepts of development like Agile, Design Patterns, and Version Control with Git, along with gaining experience of working with the top programming languages.

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                                                              4. Live and Breathe Creativity

                                                              a. Udemy: Introduction to Graphic Design

                                                              It is a top-rated program for the new learners and designers to explore the Graphic Design world.

                                                              From the history of communication to the design principles, the course will help the students to learn everything specifically and implement in the real world.

                                                              b. Canva Design School

                                                              From a beginner to advanced level, this course will provide you with an elaborated and comprehensive knowledge of graphic design. In the form of 4 modules, this course will help the interested graphic designers to try out their skills at Graphics, ranging from fonts to colors, backgrounds, images, shapes, and layouts.

                                                              c. Microsoft Word – Basic & Advanced

                                                              62 personalized lessons, premium video tutorials, and unlimited tests and quizzes – this certified course has everything that will make your entry to the business world easier.

                                                              d. Microsoft Office: Word, Excel and Access Productivity Bundle

                                                              The course will make you productive in Word, Excel, and Access through video lectures, articles, and various other supplemental resources.

                                                              Besides, it will offer you exclusive tips and tricks to enhance your skills at using Microsoft office.

                                                              5. Raise Your Reflexes to IT Troubleshooting

                                                              a. IT Troubleshooting Skill Training by Udemy

                                                              IT Troubleshooting Skill Training will upgrade your logical concepts over technical components to find and repair faults.

                                                              It will provide you with a methodological approach to learn the basics of troubleshooting, practice them via exercises and drills, and enhance your IT troubleshooting intelligence.

                                                              b. IT Help Desk Online Course on Lynda

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                                                              The Lynda’s IT troubleshooting online course will train you how to respond to the issues related to Windows 10, Office 365, JIRA software, and more, from a local as well as a remote location.

                                                              Mobile Apps and Websites to Enhance Computer Skills

                                                              The aforementioned online courses will undoubtedly train you for a successful career ahead. But, in case you want a long-term support, turn towards the following websites and mobile apps:

                                                              • Duolingo – Duolingo app will improve your spoken and written communication skills in different languages. With the magic of gamification added to the study, the app will make learning a fun and addictive task.
                                                              • Hemingway – Hemingway app defines the length, complexity, and common errors associated with the sentences. In this way, it helps you to write effectively and go ahead in the career.
                                                              • Udemy – The Udemy, with its 2000+ courses, is a great platform to master new skills, advance your career and explore the newer technologies and programming languages. Enrol a course as per your budget and make a brighter future.
                                                              • eDX – eDX is yet another commendable platform you can look forward to. The platform offers you the best of the tutorials prepared by the business professionals and technology experts, ensuring a great boost in your computer skills.
                                                              • Excel Easy – Excel Easy, as the name depicts, will make working with Excel easier for you via their detailed tutorials and 300+ real-life examples.
                                                              • GCF LearnFree.org – It is a one-stop platform for accelerating your future in the computer world. From graphic design to Microsoft Office, resume writing, enhancing adaptability, and much more, the top experts will guide you with everything on this platform.
                                                              • QuarkXPress – The QuarkXPress will aid you to add soul to your design with its unparalleled collection of font style, size, and typography. The best part is that it is avails all the options in different languages, including English, Spanish, German, French, and Italian to name a few.

                                                              Bonus: Tips to Accelerate Your Approach For a Better Career Ahead

                                                              Though these resources will make you stand out from the crowd and get hired at once, you need to focus on various other things, such as:

                                                              1. Practice, Practice, Practice

                                                              It is common to forget what we learn. To ensure that you do not miss any opportunity just because you forgot, keep practising.

                                                              Make it your routine. Polish your computer skills and you will surely end up getting an offer letter from a recognized firm.

                                                              2. Work on Your Efficiency

                                                              Remembering what you learned is not enough; practice to enhance those skills to do better.

                                                              For example, if you take around 50 minutes to create a design, target for 40 minutes.

                                                              3. Look for Shortcuts

                                                              Smart work rules over hard work more often. So, look forward to learning shortcuts to do any task. This will increase your chances to crack an interview and get selected.

                                                              4. Apply for an Internship

                                                              Last but not the least, apply for an internship to see what’s trending in the market and how much you are ready for it. While doing an internship, pay attention to your weak points and work on them. This will ensure a success when you apply for your dream job.

                                                              By the late, it’s never too late to be an intern or grab whatever opportunity to learn something new! Here’s how:

                                                              How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

                                                              The Bottom Line

                                                              Seeing the current market scenario, it is evident that having computer skills is a boon for a better career ahead.

                                                              So, rather than struggling with thousands of other things and trying to crack interviews, focus on the computer skills mentioned in this article. Utilize the resources and experts’ tips shared and look forward to having a successful and prosperous future.

                                                              Featured photo credit: Glenn Carstens-Peters via unsplash.com

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