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Awesome iPhone Apps

March 24th, 2011

One of the many things I love about the iPhone is all the apps that speak to my obsessive need to keep track of the stuff I do, would like to do, am doing, or own. Below are some of my recent discoveries:

Home Library – It’s not just for books, and in fact I use it for everything except books since I don’t own enough to care tracking them. It’s pretty good at scanning items in; much more so than other apps I’ve tried that do the same thing. The interface is simple, and you can log into the website and download your media collection to Excel or PDF. It’s also great because it estimates the value of your media collection if you ever lose it. I spent about two days obsessively scanning all my DVDs, games, and CDs into the app and it turns out right now I own 388 CDs, 190 DVDs, and 82 games estimated to be worth about $10,000. It seems like a lot, but when I look around, it doesn’t look like much because everything is confined to a relatively small area. POther features of the app include being able to search your collection, keeping track of loans, maintaining a wish-list, and tracking what you’ve borrowed from others. Things I’d like to see added to the app – better sorting capabilities as well as a field to define the gaming platform for the games, otherwise you don’t know unless you are looking at the cover art which is not part of the downloaded PDF or Excel file and is only shown in the app or on the website.

Time Flies – There are tons of apps that remind you to do things in the future, but this simple little app lets you track the last time you did something and a history of how many times you’ve done it (provided you remember to log it). It’s very handy for tracking the last time I changed my contact lenses or got my hair cut, or even took my vitamin D. I would like to have it remind me to do these things at preset intervals and hopefully that will be an enhancement to the app in the future.

Goodreads – I just discovered this one yesterday right before I was going to opt to buy a subscription to LibraryThing. I thought I should see what other book tracking services were available and found the website where I learned there was a free iPhone app to compliment it. Score! It took about an hour messing around with the export file from LibraryThing to get GoodReads to recognize certain fields correctly. Goodreads claims the export file from LibraryThing is automatically supported but I found that it really only used the ISBN number and discarded most of the other information including the date I read the book and my rating – only THE two most important pieces of data, IMHO. They show a sample import file, though, so I manipulated the file I exported from LibraryThing a few times to match the column headings and data formatting and after a few tries was able to successfully port all my information over to the new system. Now I can track the books I’ve read on my iPhone easily which is great because I’ve read 14 books since getting my Kindle which is way more than I was reading last year. I prefer Goodreads’ interface to LibraryThing as well. The app is a bit buggy when it comes to sorting the books by date read, but it’s tolerable and still a heck of a lot better than going to LibraryThing’s non-mobile supported site to add new books.

I’ve become quite spoiled since buying my iPhone – I expect most websites to support it. In addition, any site that claims to offer functionality that will make my life better best have an app in the appstore or I’m not interested. Maybe I’m becoming one of those dreadful Apple fangirls or something, I don’t know.

Other iPhone apps I highly recommend, and use on a daily basis:

Dropbox – To the cloud!
Evernote – To your other cloud!
FeeddlerRSS – Best free Google RSS reader I could find
Firefox Home – Your bookmarks everywhere you go
Momento – Simple diary app for those non-blog-worthy thoughts/feelings
ToDo – Get it done!

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  1. March 26th, 2011 at 19:02 | #1

    I love Goodreads. Back when I had an iphone, before I killed it in the washing machine, I used it all the time to keep track of what books I wanted to read so I could easily locate my list when I was at the bookstore.

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