My Migration from Papers to Bookends

I have dedicated a lot of time and energy squeaking every ounce of productivity from the Papers app. I’ve used Papers for more than a decade. Over the years, I built many scripts and work-arounds to address the shortcomings of the application.ReadCube purchased Papers in 2016. Because of the time I’ve spent in Papers, I started having angst when I read of certain changes to the software: a subscription model, the loss of Magic Citations, and the loss of integration with Scrivener.I started exploring alternatives to Papers. When I wrote about my interest in migrating away from Papers, several Wippp Readers suggested I check out Bookends. Several folks raved about the tight integration between Bookends and Devonthink as well as Bookends and Tinderbox—two other programs I use heavily in my academic life. Several people also mentioned the LEGENDARY support of SonnySoft, the company  behind Bookends.My initial evaluation of Bookends was far too cursory. Following publication of the blog entry, I received a very nice email from SonnySoft asking me to take a closer look at Bookends. After digging deep into the software, I decided to migrate from Papers to Bookends. I haven’t looked back. It’s been several months now and the more I use Bookends, the more I like it.Things I like about Bookends:

  • The interface, although not as modern as Papers, is cleaner and more organized.

  • The iOS and Desktop version are better integrated than Papers.

  • A PDF on my phone is drop-dead easy to import into Bookends. The PDF and the metadata I choose is automatically synced with the Mac app (although I have to rename the pdf when I get to my Mac).

  • All PDFs are saved to a single folder in iCloud, making them easy to access and for Devonthink to index.

  • Bookends integrates well with Scrivener (and many other writing clients)

  • Dragging and dropping citations into Tinderbox and Devonthink are both seamless. Tinderbox maintains metadata from Bookends. This obviates the need for the KM script I built to move citations from Papers to Tinderbox.

Things I don’t like:

  • It was difficult to import Papers library with PDF into Bookends (Bookends only imported about 1/3 of my PDFs).

  • I can't export or customize the format of the exported metadata.

  • My smart collections don’t transfer to iOS.

  • Although I can designate a “watch” folder to import new PDFs into Bookends, this only works with PDFs that are saved to the folder AFTER Bookends is open. This didn't work well with how I collect information so I decided to modify my Hazel script, changing it to launch Bookends instead of Papers.

  • I don't like the way duplicate references and / or PDFs are handled.

Over the next few months, I plan to write several entries about my migration and how Bookends has become a critical part of my augmented writing workflow.

Deliveries Automation - The easiest way to track your packages

Here is a quick tip I wish I figured out before the holidays….There is a nifty application for Mac and iOS called Deliveries (by JuneCloud). The app aggregates tracking information of all your packages. I used it over the holidays to track the progress of my gifts. Out of the box, the app uses iCloud to sync data between your iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Although Deliveries has handy features, it was a multi-step process to get my tracking numbers into the app.The app was so useful, I decided to figure out a way to automate the process of tracking number extraction. JuneCloud was way ahead of me. It turns out there are two ways to sync data in Deliveries: through iCloud or through JuneCloud’s own cloud service, JuneCloud Sync. If you sign up for a JuneCloud Sync account, you can send an email with a tracking number to and Deliveries takes care of the rest.I find auto-extraction from forwarded emails extremely easy to use and is a key feature of several of my favorite apps (e.g. Tripit for travel itineraries, of FlightView for flight tracking).I wrote a rule for my email client, Airmail, that automatically forwards tracking emails to the JuneCloud Sync Service:Although I’ve only been using JuneCloud Sync a few days, so far it’s worked flawlessly (with Amazon packages) and has saved me the hassle of cutting and pasting tracking numbers from emails. I’ll report back if I have any trouble with other vendors.

Mourning the loss of Integration Between Papers and Scrivener

Early indications, including personal communication with ReadCube personnel, are that Magic Citations (now called SmartCite) will no longer integrate with Scrivener. The new Papers app will only work with Microsoft Word. Bibliography formatting is not an issue for me. The biggest loss is the ability to add citations on the fly in Scrivener without interupting my writing flow.The news of this impending feature loss (along with the announcement of an annual fee) had me scrambling to invesitgate my options for citation managers. During my search, I came across this Wikipedia article, Comparison of Reference Management Software with a great table that collates the majority of software out there.My needs are the following:

  1. Ability to organize and search through metadata and pdfs
  2. Integrated citation insertion with Scrivener and Ulysses
  3. Ability to insert citations while writing on an iOS device
  4. Ability to annotate PDFs and export each comment individually appended with the article's metadata
  5. Ability to export metadata (to enable my workflows for sense-making and export of annotations)

I looked at the following:

  • Zotero
  • Bookends
  • Mendeley
  • Endnote
  • Readcube
  • No product currently fills the void left by Papers, although the consensus of users (both those seeking alternatives to Papers and those who are being forced to leave Sente) seems to be to move to Bookends. I tried the demo version of Bookends and was not impressed. I am waiting impatiently for the release of ReadCube Papers. If the majority of features are retained, I will likely bite the bullet and pay the annual fee. I plan to figure out a work-around to add citations to Scrivener / Ulysses.I'd be interested in hearing your plans / thoughts on academic citation managers.

    Travel Receipt Workflow

    Here is a handy workflow to keep track of your reimbursable / billable expenses on the road.Set-up:

    I have an Evernote Notebook that is used solely for professional receipts. This notebook is named “Receipts_Work”. I’ve set up an If This Then That (IFTTT) Applet to send an email when the notebook receives a new note.When I receive a receipt on the road, I immediately scan it with Scannable then save it to my Receipts_Work Notebook. IFTTT monitors the Receipts_Work Notebook. When the new note is detected, it automatically sends an email to both my assistant and my Omnifocus Maildrop address (so the item is added to my Omnifocus Inbox).After my trip, I can go back to my Evernote, select all the receipts/notes from my trip and make a “Table of Contents” using a single button push in Evernote.This workflow simplifies management of reimbursement receipts. Hope it works as well for you as it does for me.

    TripIt Pro Go Now

    I’ve been a long-time subscriber to TripIt Pro. I found the $49 service invaluable when traveling. In 2011 TripIt was acquired by Concur-an integrated expense and travel management service company. Then in 2014, Concur was acquired by SAP. Regardless of who owns TripIt, the application services continue to be improved.

    Go Now is a handy feature. Twenty-four hours before any U.S. domestic flight, Go Now becomes available on your flight screen.Go Now suggests a time for you to leave based on on your location, current flight status and local traffic patterns. Two hours before you need to leave, a countdown timer is initiated. Once on your way, Go Now continues to update your arrival time.When you reach your destination airport (and when you’re ready to leave for your trip home), Tripit Navigator makes it easier (and potentially more cost-effective) to find your ground transportation. Navigator shows you the option and cost for your options to get from point A to point B.These two additions are phenomenanal additions to an already powerful travel solution.


    LiquidText PDF Reader

    I have experimented with different PDF readers on my iPad. Over the past several months I’ve exclusively used a program called LiquidText.LiquidText has a unique, award-winning, interface that allows me to drag, drop, and manipulate text using my finger. LiquidText was named “Most Innovative iPad App of the Year” by Apple in 2015. LiquidText feels much more natural than any other PDF reader I’ve used on iOS--and I've used many. After highlighting with my finger, the exerpts / highlights / comments are extracted into their own area. The excerpts may be dragged around, linked, and repositioned at will.When reading and highlighting, I either drag text from the PDF into the notes area, or simply hit “AutoExcerpt” and the text is extracted for me. I can comment on the excerpted information.I can also view the place in the paper the highlight came from by merely touching the excerpt in the notes area.LiquidText reads and writes to a whole range of cloud services, but has limited range of export document choices.An Enterprise version is available for $9.99 that adds features like multi-document search and the ability to comment on multiple documents simultaneously. I've been using the app so much, I upgraded primarily to support the developer.There are a few features that are not (yet) available—the most critical for me is the inability to export highlights into a text file—LiquidText only exports highlights to Microsoft Word. This, unfortunately, is not compatible with my workflow for extracting highlights, but I like Liquidtext so much, I figured out a workaround using Skim—here is my entire workflow:

    • I set up a Dropbox LiquidText Folder to serve as a bridge with my desktop.
    • I open the entry in Papers on iOS.
    • From within Papers I select "open in". -this brings up action menu.
    • I open, read, and annotate in Liquidtext. This includes linking the full-text of references to each excerpt (as suggested by reader GH).
    • I export the PDF and Notes from Liquidtext to my Dropbox Folder.
    • When I get to my Mac, I open the PDF in Skim.
    • Under the File Menu in Skim, I choose “Convert Notes” making my highlights into Skim Notes.
    • I then process the annotations as discussed in this blog entry.
    • (If you want to take the time on your desktop you can also replace the Papers PDF with the LiquidText highlighted version).

    Give Liquidtext a try and please let me know what you think.

    Free Time 2 - scheduling made easy!

    Meetings are unavoidable in academics. For busy professionals, finding a time to meet can be a daunting task. Although apps like Outlook have built in scheduling features, few use them. One major limitation; Outlook's scheduling features only work for individuals using the same corporate domain.Previously, I wrote about my love of Sunrise Meet--a fabulous add on to Sunrise that smoothed the task of scheduling meetings. Sunrise was purchased by Microsoft and, unfortunately, the app will soon be shuttered. Thus, I went on a quest to find a Sunrise Meet replacement. I'm happy to report I found great alternative: Free Time 2Free Time 2 is a standalone app for iOS. The interface is clean and intuitive. If I receive a meeting request, I merely open the app and surf to the potential day(s) of interest. Each day displays a list of appointments along with my free time.C-DF75AA9E-8B7A-4A60-B188-B4207270E4F5I select as many potential meeting times on as many days as I’d like to propose.C-E1A86AA5-587D-4EE9-91B1-0A60EA3442EEI then hit “Share,” opening the Action Menu.C-F6FDD8D9-F7F1-4D2B-A943-C9E2C8DBC728I choose what app I’d like to share my availability. Free Time formats the list of the potential dates for me. Here is an example in Spark.C-D1B5F683-D57B-4D79-B155-66783086CC09Free Time 2, in many ways, outshines Sunrise Meet. I use Free Time several times each day to schedule 1:1 meetings. Now if only there was an app that could seemlessly handle multi-person scheduling. Enjoy!

    Google GBoard - Love it!

    I have become a big fan of the new Google keyboard, Gboard. I've been using this keyboard for IOS over the last week. During that time, Gboard has become my keyboard of choice supplanting the native Apple keyboard. I particularly like the ability to glide type and the ability to look up information on Google without leaving the current application. I’ve found emoji links, GIFs, and image links less useful.The only three drawbacks I have found include:1.losing the ability to dictate, 2. losing the ability to enter passwords, and 3. the fact that GBoard does not understand Apple Keyboard Shortcuts.For more information check out the Cult ot Mac article. Download Gboard and give it a try. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

    The Sun Sets on Calendars

    One of the most-used application on my iPhone is my calendar. For quite some time, Sunrise has been my go-to app. About a year ago, Sunrise was purchased by Microsoft. This week, Microsoft has decided to kill the app. With the announcement that Sunrise will be inactivated in August, I started a search for an iOS calendar replacement. Although Sunrise appears to now be baked into Outlook for iOS, my workplace doesn’t allow me to use the app to access my Outlook account. I’m going to sorely miss Sunrise’s integration with LinkedIn and especially, the Sunrise Meet feature, that I use frequently.I am trying two calendars as replacements: Cal by and Fantastical 2. Neither seems perfect, but I’m leaning toward Cal for its clean design. I’ve never been fond of Fantastical’s user interface and I’m always a sucker for good design.I’ll keep you posted on what I find. If you have a particular go-to calendar app, I’d love to hear what you use, and why you like it.

    Storyist and Scrivener? Nope.

    As I wrote in my last entry, I was excited when I read Ricardo Sanchez’s article on the integration of Storyist and Scrivener. Full of anticipation, I plunked down my $15 and downloaded Storyist. I was disappointed.First i tried to enable DropBox sync in Storyist, but then realized Storyist requires the native Scrivener file to be saved on iCloud Drive. I followed the instructions in Storyist to set up iCloud Drive—the Storyist Folder showed up on my iPhone, but not on my Mac. I consulted the forums and saw that iCloud sync can take some time—up to several minutes. I waited-no sync. I cold-booted my phone-no sync. I reinstalled Storyist—still no sync. Finally, I connected my phone to my Mac and iTunes.Lo and behold, a Storyist Folder appeared on the iCloud Drive on my Mac. On my Mac, I set up an alias for a current Scrivener project and moved the native file to the Storyist Folder on ICloud Drive. The file appear on my phone. The folder hierarchy appeared identical on the phone as on Scrivener on my Mac. Many of the features of the Storyist software don’t work with native Scrivener files.I navigated down into the Drafts folder on my iPhone and typed some text. I waited for what seemed like several minutes for the file on my Mac to update. I opened the Scrivener project on my Mac and opened the section I had edited on my phone—the edited text did not show up on my Mac. Instead, I saw file conflict notifications between the Mac and iPhone version of the section. No matter how I tried, I was unable to resolve these conflicts.To make a long story short, I feel like I wasted $15. The lack of usable features and the unreliable sync of Storyist are deal killers for me. In fact, the only advantage I can see in using Storyist is the ability to read native Scrivener files. In every other aspect, I found Storyist inferior to the Dropbox text sync method I discussed in this entry. I’m going to continue to hold out for the real deal: Scrivener iOS.

    Ulysses for iPhone coming soon

    I’ve been patiently awaiting the iPhone version of Ulysses. As the Soulmen blog states, they hoped to have the app released by Christmas, but ran into some delays.I’m a big fan of Ulysses—the Soulmen keep adding features—and they have a sense of humor. The iCloud native version is feature-rich without getting in the way. I lose a bit of app functionality when editing files from DropBox, but it is still pleasant to write in the Ulysses interface.Ulysses is, hands down, the best writing environment for web content. In fact, if it wasn’t for Scrivener, I would say Ulysses is the the best writing environment, period.Until the Ulysses iPhone app is released, as I noted in this blog entry, I’m currently forced to interject Editorial into my workflow. Editorial allows me to dictate and edit files on my iPhone, then share that work with Dropbox. In the future, after Ulysses for iPhone is released, Editorial will remain part of my writing arsenal, since I’ve figured out a way to share files back and forth with Scrivener. I’ll use Editorial at least until Scrivener comes out with their mobile app.In some ways, I’m glad Ulysses did not release their app for Christmas. The anticipation gives those of us that love writing something to look forward to. I just hope it doesn’t take Soulmen too long!

    Tripit and Flightview - Automating Itinerary Building and Flight Tracking

    I often travel for business. I previously blogged about my love of TripIt-a website with an app that extracts flight and travel information from my email. I merely send my airline, hotel, and car rental confirmations to and the site builds a peronalized itinerary. The Pro version has all sorts of other great features, like finding and booking alternative flights.A while ago, I discovered another site called FlightView. Flightview publishes up-to-the minute, detailed information on flights and airport traffic. It works great in tandem with TripIt. And just like TripIT Flightview is able to extract the salient details from an email itinerary, then activate tracking the day you travel.Now whenever I reserve a flight, I kill two birds with one stone by simply forwarding my flight itinerary to both Tripit and Flightview at the same time. I use this simple trick literally every time I reserve a flight.

    Writing with my Voice

    In my academic roles in the Duke University Human Simulation and Patient Safety Center I write a great deal. I write manuscripts, grants,white papers, and a whole host of other material. I’ve read the most efficient way to write a long document is to spew everything into a draft as quickly as possible, then go back and edit.Typing slows me down. The fastest way for me to “write” something is with my voice. I find it easier to adhere to this ‘draft first’ rule when I dictate using my voice rather than typing out a draft on my keyboard.Why is this? When I type, I tend to correct errors as they occur. Even worse, I try to polish each sentence on the fly (rather than powering through the entire document at one time). The constant editing interrupts my thoughts and makes slogging through an whole first draft extremely tedious.Lately, I've been using a workflow that takes advantage of the native iPhone’s dictation feature to “write.” This workflows has sped up my writing significantly by forcing me to keep moving forward while allowing me to write anywhere/anytime.This workflow is relatively easy to set up. Here is the software you’ll need.OmniOutlinerOmniOutliner is, you guessed it, an outlining program. Before I write anything, I use OmniOutliner on both on my iPad and on my Mac to plan my document. The Omni Group recently added the ability to sync to iCloud (currently a beta feature). Universal access to my outlines allows me to draft and rearrange my outline on the fly, regardless of location.ScrivenerThe next piece of software is Scrivener for Mac. Scrivener is an essential writing programs. That’s right, essential! If you don’t use Scrivener yet, stop reading and download the software right now.One of the advantages of Scrivener on Mac is it allows me to write in chunks. I can start writing in the middle of my project. When I sync the Scrivener project to Dropbox, I end up with a number of text files (each representing one ‘chunk’ of the Scrivener Project). Being able to write non-linearly from anywhere allows me to complete a draft very quickly. I am able to knock out sections of a document while in my car, walking between meetings, or anywhere else the urge to write hits me.Chunks of text in Scrivener may be moved around ad nauseum. I take advantage of the ability to move things around quite frequently. If I don’t like what I’ve changed, Scrivener has built in version control , so I can revert back to past drafts.Scrivener exports pieces of the project as individual files. Scrivener puts all these files in a “Drafts” folder inside the folder of your choice. These files can be txt, rtf, or other formats. I use text since I write in Markdown.DropBoxI set up a folder in my DropBox hierarchy called “Writing Sync.” It is here I synchronize my project between Scrivener and Editorial. Each new project gets its own folder.EditorialEditorial is a phenomenal text editor for iOS with a slew of built in features. Editorial allows me to edit documents written in Markdown and has a wholebunch of other features that makes it my go-to document editing software on iOS. Editorial, unsurprisingly, syncs with DropBox. I have Editorial point to my  “Writing Sync” in Dropbox.Now that I’ve discussed the software I use, let’s set everything up.The WorkflowThe first thing I do is draft my outline in OmniOutliner. I typically do this on my iPad or my Mac then rearrange the outline until I'm happy. Once my outline is complete I export it as an OPML file.I create a blank Scrivener project, then import the OPML file into Scrivener. Importing the OPML populates the Scrivener project, preserving the hierarchy of the outline. Each bullet of the outline receives its own individual chunk in Scrivener.The next step is to set up synchronization of the Scrivener with Dropbox. Under the File Menu, I go to Sync->With External Folder….I make sure the back up before export box is checked and make sure that the project is exported as text. I select the “Writing Sync” Folder as the text file destination. I hit okay and the entire Scrivener project is exported to "Writing Sync" as individual text documents (Scrivener assigns a number to the front of each text file to keep them in order).On my iPad or iPhone, I point Editorial to my “Writing Sync” Folder. Within Editorial I can edit each of the individual text files. I open the file I wish to write/edit and use the dictation (Siri must be enabled) on My iPhone. Editorial immediately synchronizes the new text back  into Dropbox.Once I return to my Mac I re-synchronize the project in Scrivener. All the files in Scrivener now reflect my writing from Editorial. One I've completed my first draft, I use this same back and forth method to edit.Once I'm happy with each of the chunks, I go back to Scrivener on my Mac and compile the whole document as a single Markdown file. I save this file a level above the “Drafts” Folder Scrivener created when syncing.I  can access the full document using Editorial (or any other text editor) on my Mac or iOS device (I use Byword or Ulysses on my Mac) . Finally, when I'm done polishing, I export the document to Microsoft Word (or to the web). Using this workflow, I can write something in about 1/10 the time it used to take me with a keyboard. Although this method works well, it is not without a few annoyances. iPhones limit dictation to 30 second chunks. In addition, Editorial tends to chop off the last few words of a sentence after those 30 seconds expire. Because I’m working on segments of the overall project and can dictate quite a bit in 30 seconds, this is not a huge deal for me. When drafting, the key is to keep pressing forward.This workflow has literally changed to way I write. The workflow allows me great deal of flexibility and saves me a great deal of time.

    Sunrise Meet

    The war of the calendar apps continues. I’ve rotated between Tempo, Timeful (now part of Google), as well as the built in Calendar App on my iPhone. Although I like many of the features of Tempo and Timeful, my current app of choice is Sunrise (Sunrise was recently purchased by Microsoft). Today, Sunrise added a new “Meet” feature that helps plan meeting times.

    Meet works by installing a custom keyboard on your iPhone or iPad. Launch iMessage or Mail then enable the Meet keyboard and pick available times from your calendar. Your proposed times are sent to your friends or colleagues who see your choices overlayed on their own calendar (if they use Sunrise). Once your friend finalizes the meeting time, the entry is placed in their calendar and confirmed on your calendar. Although I’ve yet to use this new feature for scheduling a meeting, it seems like it will be very useful.


    IMG 0056




    IMG 0054 2

    There are less polished alternatives such as “Share Availability” macro in the iOS Workflow App, but Meet sets a new standard for improving the experience of scheduling meetings.

    Read about more of Meet’s features in today’s TechCrunch Article.

    Automated Dictation and Task Delegation using Evernote and Workflow App

    As usual, David Sparks (Macsparky) inspired me. After finishing the MacSparky Workflow Video Field Guide, I decided to try my chops at buidling something new. As I was exploring the Gallery (the pre-baked workflows that come with the app), one of the examples caught my eye; "Recording to Evernote."I have a twenty minute commute between my home and work. When not listening to audio books, I attempt to be productive. While driving, I'm frustrated by my inability to delegate tasks to my administrative assistant. Before Workflow, in order to send a request (or dictation), I'd have to ask Siri to transcribe an email and then hope for the best. As I'm sure you're aware, Siri makes many mistakes. It's both difficult and unsafe to proof while driving. Siri was not a viable option.That's where Workflow comes in. I built a Workflow that records my voice then, at the same time, sends a link to both my admin and to Omnifocus. Here's how I did it.

    Add the "Recording to Evernote" from the Gallery

    First, download Workflow. Once you've installed the app, click on the "Recording to Evernote" workflow in the Gallery. Select "Get Workflow." Your workflow will be added to your "My Workflows" Area. Now it’s time to edit.add-the-recording-to-evernote-from-the-gallery.png

    Programming the workflow

    I didn't change any of the programming at the beginning of the script, but you can.programming-the-workflow.png

    Programming the workflow - screen 2

    Here is where I altering and appended the built in script:

    • (1) I customized the name of the note and included the current date variable
    • (2) After the audio note is recorded, the file is saved to Evernote. "Get Note Link" retrieves the unique URL for this brand new note.
    • (3) "Copy to Clipboard" passes the URL of the audio to the clipboard.
    • (4) "Send email" command takes the clipboard and pastes it into my email
    • (5) I put my admin's email address is in the "To:" field
    • (6) I included my OmniFocus MailDrop email address in the "Bcc" field (so I can track what I've delegated in Omnifocus).
    • (7) I customized the Subject Field (and appended the current date)


    Add to my Home Screen

    Finally, when I was finished programming (and after I customized the color and icon of the button), I added the button to my HomeScreen. Now, when I touch the button a screen comes up that reminds me to "tap to record." I tap, record my message, and then tap again. Workflow automatically saves the recording to Evernote then sends two emails: one to my admin (with a link to the audio recording) and one to my Omnifocus Inbox (where I can keep track of the delegated task).As you can see, Workflow makes automation ridiculously easy. I hope you find this simple application useful.

    Macsparky Field Guide on iOS Workflow App

    Kudos to my friend and Mac Ninja David Sparks and his latest Macsparky Field Guide. His latest effort focuses on the iOS automation app, Workflow. In usual Macsparky fashion, David makes what might be an intimidating program into something that’s both understandable and fun. The one hour video is chock full of examples and useful workflows that touch on Maps, Photos, number calculation and much, much more. The screencast has useful stuff for everyone from beginners to seasoned Mac veterans. Please support David to keep these excellent field guides coming.

    Timeful - the new calendar app from Dan Ariely

    I’m still on my quest for the perfect calendar app. Over the past week, I’ve been using Timeful (Duke’s own Professor of Behavior Economics, Dan Ariely, is one of the co-founders of the company behind the app).

    So far so good–Timeful offers a fresh approach to getting things done. Although the app has not yet supplanted Tempo,  Fantastical 2 and Wunderlist on my mobile devices for daily planning, I am very hopeful. I can’t wait to see how the app develops. 

    Take a look at this video to learn more.

    MyPhoneDesktop: Seamlessly Transfer information Between Mac and iOS Devices

    I’ve written about the interplay between my Mac and iOS devices in several entries. The interplay between my iPhone, iPad, and computer are critical to my productivity. Recently, I discovered a program called MyPhoneDesktop that I use so often, it has made its way to the home screen of my iDevices.

    Although I love my iPhone, I have trouble with the soft keys—they slow me down when I have to type things like URLs or text strings. If I wanted to transfer files, I would typically use Dropbox (or email) to get files from my Mac to my iPhone or iPad. But no more. After installing and configuring MyPhoneDesktop on both my iPhone and Mac, I can rapidly share information between my devices.

    As an example, I can search for a contact on my Mac, then have my computer dial the number on my iPhone. I can send URLs, text snippets, or complete files from my Mac to my iPhone or iPad merely by dragging and dropping onto the app. Similarly, I can transfer pictures to my phone by dragging and dropping onto a pop-up receptacle that emerges from the right side of my screen. Perhaps best of all is the app's bookmarklet that passes a web page from the Mac to my iOS device through the push of a single button. 

    What’s the downside? I can’t transfer information from my iPad or your iPhone back to my Mac. 

    I use MyPhoneDesktop numerous times every day and you will too. Pick up a copy for $4.99.

    Drafts for iPad

    I was talking to a colleague today about how I quickly capture notes on my iPhone and iPad. My goto app on the iPhone is Drafts (by Agile Tortoise). Drafts lets you get stuff out of your head and on to your device quickly. Once you've captured the information, you can decide what to do with it (e.g. send to Facebook, Twitter, save as a text file, Omnifocus, or a whole host of other possibilities). 

    While Drafts was great on my iPhone, it wasn't available on the iPad--until now ($2.99 on the App Store). 
    Drafts is now on the first screen of both of my iOS devices. Thanks Agile Tortoise!