There are so many applications on the web today, how do business owners know which ones to actually download? Dave Yoken, CEO of Macuity, a Boston-based IT consulting firm and support service company, has done the work for you. Dave has researched numerous applications that are designed for small to medium sized businesses. Following are the top six most useful applications that every small business should know.
Evernote (Mac/iPhone)- Evernote is a note management program that keeps track of all your miscellaneous information that is floating around in your brain, in stickies on your desk, on notepads and elsewhere. You can keep track of typed notes, audio notes, pictures you take, and you can even capture website content into Evernote. The program not only allows you to consolidate all of your information into one place, but you can tag and organize your notes for easy retrieval. In addition, Evernote allows you to sync your notes between Macs, PCs, iPhones, BlackBerries, and other mobile devices, so no matter where you are working, your information is synched perfectly!
DropBox (Mac/iPhone)- DropBox is a system that allows you to synchronize your files (documents, spreadsheets, pictures, etc.) across multiple computers and your mobile device. Basically, the program sets up a folder on your computer that is always in sync, so no matter what you put in that folder, it is synchronized to your DropBox account. Thus it is also synchronized to all other computers on which you set up the same DropBox account. It is a simple and elegant way to share files with yourself, or with colleagues, regardless of where they are located, and it presents a simple way to back up files to DropBox’s online servers without the hassle of installing complex backup software on your computer.
Shoeboxed (iPhone)- Shoeboxed allows a business owner to take a picture of a receipt on their phone, and automatically enter that information into an expense report, or exported to QuickBooks. Forget about the worry of losing receipts!
1Password (Mac/iPhone/iPad)- 1Password eliminates the nightmare of managing, remembering, and creating passwords. In a nutshell, 1Password is like a secure file cabinet where you can store all of your website logins, wallet information (like credit card, passport information, social security numbers, and other sensitive information), software licenses, and other personal information. All of your data is securely protected by one master password. Perhaps the greatest feature about 1Password is that it works within Safari and Firefox and allows you to click a button and automatically log in to websites whose passwords you have been previously stored, no matter which browser you are using. In addition, 1Password generates highly secure passwords when you need them, and can sync across multiple computers via DropBox (see #2).
Things for Mac (Mac/iPhone/iPad)- Things is a very simple To-Do List management application based on the Getting Things Done (GTD) organizational philosophy. The cool aspect of Things is that at its core, it creates the ability to establish a To-Do list in an effortless manner. The interface is very easy to navigate, and adding notes, due dates, and organizational tags to your To-Do items is a cinch. In addition, Things allows you to delve deeper into more advanced features that require more complex organizational rules like Projects and Areas of Responsibility.
NetNewsWire (Mac)- NetNewsWire is a free and easy to use RSS feed reader for the Mac. An RSS feed is a document that contains a partial or full set of articles delivered from a weblog, news headline or other web site that updates its content often. Instead of navigating to each of your favorite web sites for news, you can simply subscribe to each site’s RSS feed. Then NetNewsWire collects all of the updated articles from all of your favorite sites into one convenient place. Using an RSS feed reader saves you time by allowing you to get all of your news updates with a single click of the mouse instead of spending time browsing multiple web sites for updates. NetNewsWire does this job extremely well.
Dave Yoken, CEO of Macuity, a Boston-based IT consulting firm and support service company.