Recommended: Drafts 4 for iPhone and iPad

I keep mentioning this software Drafts 4 and often it’s entirely unconscious, more a consequence of how I write so much in it than through any deliberate plan to sell it to you. But I got the chance to expand on exactly why I like it so much when MacNN made it the topic of a Living With column. These are pieces about what something is like after a lot of use, after a long time. It’s interesting because most technology pieces are about today’s new releases and there is only so much you can possibly learn in a short review.

Whereas with a long process of reflection like this, there’s time to have discovered:

It is just a place to write. More than a text editor, less than a word processor, I have been opening it up to write down the odd stray thought for a couple of years. I’ve been opening it up to write the minutes of a meeting. To write a short story. To prepare a script for a presentation. If my brain isn’t somehow befuddled into believing I must open some other writing tool, I automatically open Drafts.

If that were all I did — open, write, rinse, repeat — then I’d be more than happy. I cannot, cannot define or explain this, but there is something pleasurable about writing in Drafts, about the physical typing of words into it, that I don’t get in Word or Pages.

Living With: Drafts 4 (iOS) – William Gallagher, MacNN (27 May 2015)

It isn’t all I do in Drafts 4. Read the full piece for more detail, more explanation and even more enthusing.

Drafts 4 is available for iOS and costs £7.99 in the App Store.

Living with OmniFocus

I’ve reviewed To Do apps for MacNN, and I’ve written books about creative productivity that recommend such apps. If it’s a To Do app that ran online or on Apple gear, it’s likely that I’ve at least tried it. Yet in November of 2011, I bought OmniFocus for iPhone, and while I have since bought five more To Do apps for myself, every one of them was OmniFocus.

There’s OmniFocus for Mac which I bought 21 days later. There’s OmniFocus for iPad, which I bought the day after that. This is not a casual investment: none of the three apps are exactly cheap, and while you don’t have to buy all three, you sort of do. Yet I used to often tell people in creative productivity workshops that OmniFocus is so good and so deeply, even profoundly, useful to me that I would pay that price all over again.

So I did.

Living with: OmniFocus – William Gallagher, MacNN (19 March 2015)

“Living With” is a series on that sees what you think after long-term testing of something. In my case, it’s over three years. That’s a bit more thorough, that’s a bit more time than you can get for any other review and time turns up things. In this case it did turn up some problems but then it turned up solutions and I turned out to be a fan of OmniFocus. Quite right too.

Do read the whole piece.