Monday, September 29, 2014

Five handy apps to knock out multiple tasks (TechRepublic)

By September 22, 2014

My original idea was to focus on tools similar to Jack of Tools, which is a Windows Phone app that includes a compass, level, altimeter, speedometer, GPS, etc. Unfortunately, that type of tool is relatively tough to come by, especially if you're looking for one that works on a variety of mobile platforms. So I decided to focus on useful apps that perform a variety of related functions.


Evernote is a free app that can help you remember things. Like Microsoft OneNote, Evernote allows you to collect information from a variety of sources and write that information to a notebook. For instance, you can save a Web page or you can save images or blocks of text from a page without saving the entire page. The main thing that makes Evernote worthwhile is that it's useful for so many diverse purposes, serving as a personal organizer, research tool, and collaboration app.

Zip Code Tools

You may not need Zip Code Tools on a daily basis, but it provides such a great wealth of information I just had to include it in this list. Zip Code Tools allows you to perform all manner of lookup related to Zip codes. It can answer questions such as what are the zip codes in California, what zip code am I in right now, what is the demographic data for 90210, or how far is it to zip code 40258 (and many, many more). It can even point you toward the nearest post office.

Waze Social GPS

Waze Social GPS is a free multi-function tool that's a big help for those who have a daily commute. As the name implies, Waze uses real-time data from other drivers to alert you to traffic problems along your normal route. If a traffic problem does exist, Waze can route you around it. It can also alert you to things like speed traps and road closures.


OpenTable is a free tool geared toward those who like to dine out. Although OpenTable markets itself as a restaurant reservation app, it does quite a bit more. For instance, when you make a reservation, you can include special requests (such as "I'm allergic to strawberries" or "I'd like to sit next to the window"). The app also puts your reservation on your calendar. It even lets you invite your friends to join you for dinner.

Trip38 Travel Assistant

Trip38 Travel Assistant is a free multi-function travel app. Like many other travel apps, Trip38 manages your reservations for flights and hotels — but it does a lot more than that. The app provides a wealth of destination-specific information. For instance, Trip38 can tell you about local attractions, events that are happening at your destination city, and the weather at your destination.

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