You are reading Creativerly, the weekly digest about creativity and productivity-boosting tools and resources, combined with useful insights, articles, and findings from the fields of design and tech. The newsletter built for the creative community.
Hey and welcome to issue 111 👋
First of all, I want to say thank you to everyone who replied to last week's issue of Creativerly, and recommending some podcasts. There were some super interesting recommendations which I definitely want to share with you. Therefore, here is a quick list with some of them:
- My Favorite Murder
- Song Exploder
- How They Get Stuff Done
- You're Wrong About
- How I Built This
- The Knowledge Project
Make sure to check them out and give them a listen!
It is always a pleasure to read all your emails, which most of the time lead to great conversations. If you still have some podcast recommendations you want to share with me, just reply to this email. It is one of my goals, although this newsletter is constantly growing, to keep as personal as possible. I am always open to discuss all sorts of things with my audience and therefore you can always reach out to me.
Also, I want to take this opportunity and kindly say thank you to the nice folks over at Paved. They created a really nice blog post featuring six indie newsletters that write about tools to boost up your workflow tech stack. Guess what, Creativerly is one of the featured newsletters. Many thanks to the folks over at Paved, for the featuring. If you did not know about Paved, their goal is to create a seamless sponsorship relationship that makes influencer advertising streamlined and simple for publishers and advertisers.
If you have recommendations or feedback, drop me an email or a tweet. For now, enjoy the newsletter! 🥰
Apps, Software, Tools
Reasonal is a great workflow boost when you work within the content management area, and if you were looking for a tool that brings effective collaboration to that area. Reasonal lets you connect all of your content, across all of your apps, instantly, so they always stay in sync. Working on different files, using different tools, and collaborating with different people can turn into a mess really quickly. Reasonal helps you keep everything in sync and stay on track by bringing all your files into one beautifully designed workspace. It never has been that easy to find all the content you are looking for that fast. Whenever anything changes within your files since more and more people will work on them, Reasonal will inform you about those changes, so you will never lose track. On top of that, you can also link files within Reasonal. Their AI-(graph)-based engine points out overseen changes, old file versions, or duplicates to help you avoid mistakes. Reasonal’s integrations are built to make your existing tools smarter, so you can keep doing your work without having to maintain another app. With Reasonal you do not have to dig through countless slack messages or emails, you do not have to spend countless hours searching one specific file, never work on any irrelevant files again. Super intuitive tool!
Since I am always testing and playing around with different productivity tools, I recently really liked the idea of creating product roadmaps. I like the idea of visualising the tasks I am working on, on a dedicated timeline. Back in issue 98 of Creativerly we already took a look at a tool called Roadmap, that lets you not only organize your tasks but also prioritize them by visualizing them on a roadmap. Wayplan is another super interesting tool focusing on planning your roadmap, prioritizing features, and building better products. Wayplan lets you prioritize features with value/effort scores, and lets you sort, filter, group them for further organization. All your tracked features can be planned by day, week, month, quarter, or year. On top of that, Wayplan offers live gantt charts to understand your timeline at a glance. Wayplan is currently in beta and during that beta it is completely free to use. As always, join the beta, test the product, and provide feedback to the creators.
A lot of people, especially those who are part of teams, struggle because their communication is spread across different tools, with no common ground. Most of the time, different roles use different tools across their teams. Allo wants to change this, by creating a common ground and remote workspace for your team. Allo brings together a set of different tools. It combines the advantages of Trello, Miro, and PowerPoint. It really improves our workflow and makes our lives less complicated. Avid readers might think right now that Allo sounds similar to another tool, called BeeCanvas which was featured in Creativerly 92. Well, guess what Allo is BeeCanvas, since the company reshaped its focus and redesigned the whole interface. Allo offers a wide range of different workspace templates, so you do not need to start completely from scratch. If you need to create a space for a Daily Standup, a Design Review, a Project Plan, a Weekly Team meeting, or anything else, Allo got you covered with pre-made templates to kick things off. Allo is available for both Windows and macOS. There is a free plan which gives you already a lot of options and features. Professionals and Teams can get a tailored plan which will cost $9 per month (if billed annually).
I am a huge fan of a super simple team with a great cause, that does save a lot of time. Wormhole falls into that category. Wormhole is a super simple, privacy-focused file-sharing tool. With Wormhole you can share files with end-to-end encryption. End-to-end encryption prevents potential eavesdroppers from being able to access the cryptographic keys needed to decrypt the conversation. When you share a Wormhole link a secret key gets created and this key is automatically included in the link, so you can be sure your files will only reach the people you are sending the link to. On top of that, links created with Wormhole automatically expire. So you can keep what you share private and make sure your stuff doesn't stay online forever. On top of that, Wormhole is incredibly fast, since you can share files in just two seconds. Wormhole makes it possible to send files up to 10GB, which is insane. Super simple tool, perfectly executed. Tools like Wormhole always excite me.
If you are working in the field of User Interface Design, and your Tool of Choice is Sketch, Prime Design Starter Kit is a great resource, that lets you Design with the speed of light. Get a headstart with your next project with a set of 7 libraries packed with over 2,000 components and 140 UI Templates (for web and mobile). The use cases can be different: no matter if you want to use it in its entirety as a library, or just create Landing Page for your next client, Prime Design is an incredible time-saver and huge creativity boost. But Prime Design will not only save you a lot of time, but it is also a great resource to learn from best practices regarding UI designs and components.
➢ The Shortness of Time – “If we see someone throwing money away, we call that person crazy. Money has value. Wasting it seems nuts. And yet we see others—and ourselves—throw away something far more valuable every day: Time. Unlike the predictable reaction we have to someone throwing away money (they’re crazy), we often fail to think of the person who wastes time as crazy. Yet time is a finite resource. While the amount of time we get is uncertain, we know it’s limited. We can’t make any more of it when it runs out.”
➢ It's hard to draw lessons from your own failures – “Andrew Wilkinson's tale of how he blew $10,000,000 building a to-do list app perfectly illustrates the danger of trying to analyze your own failures. It's so easy to fall in love with one of those infinite alternate universes where you just did that one thing differently and everything worked out. Like "if only we had raised venture capital, we would have made it". No, sorry, you probably wouldn't have. But before we look at the folly of that central premise – that if only Flow had raised venture capital, it would have conquered Asana and the world – let's examine the inspiration Wilkinson claimed to have followed because, erhm, it was Basecamp.”
➢ Design ‘doing’ through unlearning and curiosity – “In a field like strategic design that operates at intersections, across disciplines, and through change and uncertainty, it is useful to think of the process as a state of mind, rather than seek a formula for success. While a learning mindset, as a practice, can benefit many, its specific application to strategic design is an effective way to introduce the practice and its value. Because it is an action-oriented field, strategic design requires proactive information seeking. Below, I outline two key factors for success: unlearning and curiosity.”
➢ In Defense of Doing Nothing – “In March of last year, Reddit user Oneawkwardpanda mentioned that the pandemic stay-home order had resulted in a “massive dip in productivity” for them and asked for advice. “How do you keep yourself accountable? How do you stop snacking?” Many others shared this anxiety about getting as much work as possible done from home; responses included setting up a home office, putting on a tie and shoes in the morning, and “parental controls on your laptop and phone or literally putting your TV in a closet.” Other users describe feeling guilty when relaxing or when not getting “eight hours of ‘real work’ done each day.” Polartm, another Reddit user, captured the mood neatly: “You can turn this event into a positive,” they wrote around the beginning of quarantine. “Maybe this is finally the chance for you to get your life back on track and use it as an opportunity to improve your life and make the world a better place.” Polartm went on to recommend productivity hacks like drinking your water with apple cider vinegar and taking cold showers to “get your body uncomfortable and in shock.” The moral vocabulary in use here is clear: Quarantine and a global crisis of public health, like any other event, are experiences to be capitalized upon. ”
➢ Featured Newsletter
This week's featured newsletter is the Weekly Newsletter of Richard Patey. Richard Patey sends out only two issues so far, but I am already hooked on his writing. Richard writes about his thoughts on online business, the creator economy, investing, and poker - a super interesting content mixture, I am now looking forward to receiving every Wednesday. Richard is not a new face in the newsletter space as he already successfully grew and sold a previous newsletter. His new weekly newsletter is a very personal one, with no ads, no affiliate links, just pure and straightforward writing by Richard. Make sure to check it out and subscribe right here.
Craft Docs App just announced that they raised $8m Series A led by Creandum. Craft is a mobile-first, cross-platform, modern writing tool with full feature parity across platforms. Craft will use the fresh capital to further refine the product’s connectivity features and make it integrable into as much of the user’s workflow as possible.
➢ Quick Bits
Apple to let repairers in Australia and New Zealand sign up to spare parts program. / Facebook Is Building An Instagram For Kids Under The Age Of 13. / Apple-funded Stanford study concludes Apple Watch can be used to measure frailty. / Substack is raising $65 million amid newsletter boom. / Read CEO Tim Cook's email to employees on Apple's 45th birthday. / Pinterest Is Said to Be in Talks to Acquire the Photo App VSCO. / 533 million Facebook users' phone numbers and personal data have been leaked online.
Till next time! 👋
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