The Ten Videos to Change How You View the World

By | October 16, 2007

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I believe that a sign of good information is that it makes you think. If reading a book, listening to a lecture or watching a video doesn’t change how you think, it probably isn’t that important. But if you encounter something that forces you to change your views, even if you don’t completely agree with it, you’ve found something valuable.

The problem is where do you find these ideas? Better yet, where do you find the time to consume this information?

Recently I found a great place to get started. TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) is a huge conference held each year. The best thinkers come together and share their ideas. Their website, ted.com, has hundreds of free speeches. Here’s ten that might just change how you view the world: 1) The Myth of Violence – Steven Pinker

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In this video, Steven Pinker tackles the myth that today is a more violent era than in the past. Using historical data and information from pre-industrialized tribes, Pinker shows that violence has dramatically declined in our history.

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Pinker believes that a more sensitive reporting system has led us to believe violence has increased, when it has actually dropped. Not only will it make you feel a bit better about the present times, but it gives hope that the future might be a more peaceful place.

2) 10 Ways the World Could End – Stephen Petranek

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Particle accelerators producing black holes that could destroy the world? While some of Petranek’s top ten doomsday problems might seem a bit farfetched, many are definitely worth a look. The future has a tendency to sneak up on us from behind, so preparing in advance might be a good idea.

Plus, who doesn’t want to terraform Mars?

3) New Insights on Poverty and Life Around the World – Hans Rosling

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Statistics generally aren’t described as beautiful, but Hans Rosling comes close in showing the information about our changing world. The world has changed a lot in the last few decades, as Rosling will update you on how poverty in Asia has dramatically declined.

4) Toys That Make Worlds – Will Wright

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Are games becoming a serious medium? (or are the already?) With all the debate around violence in games, it seems hard to believe that they could actually compete with film and literature for artistic merit. But as technology increases and games compete with movies for market share, this might start becoming the case. Will Wright’s talk around Spore might just persuade a few more people.

5) Technology’s Long Tail – Chris Anderson

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WIRED editor, Chris Anderson talks about the four key shifts that occur with most new technologies. First, Anderson points out, technology approaches a critical price where it becomes viable for consumers. Next it approaches a critical mass and then displaces a pre-existing technology (VCR to DVD). Finally it becomes close to free.

Using various examples, Anderson shows how technologies are at different stages along this four-part continuum. This is a must see for anyone who works, invests or benefits from high-tech.

6) Why Are We Happy? Or Not? – Daniel Gilbert

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Bestselling author of, Stumbling on Happiness, Daniel Gilbert describes some surprising information about your happiness.

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Gilbert describes a study where patients suffering from amnesia were asked to rank several paintings in the order they like them. They were then told they could keep a painting from the middle of their rankings. After the researchers left the room the patients quickly forgot about the whole encounter. When asked to rank the paintings again, however, they ranked the one they owned as being the best.

This means that our tastes are often sculpted by what we have available. As Gilbert points out, our psychological immune system can keep us happy even through depressing circumstances.

7) Universe is Queerer Than We Can Suppose – Richard Dawkins

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In this talk notable evolutionary biologist, Richard Dawkins points out just how weird reality might be. He talks about how we have evolved to fit into a so-called “Middle World” where we can’t observe the very large or very small. The universe might just be a whole lot queerer than we suppose. Or, as Dawkins points out, than we even can suppose.

8 ) Sliced Bread – Seth Godin

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Here, influential blogger, writer and speaker Seth Godin shares some of his ideas on marketing.

9) Redefining the Dictionary – Erin McKean

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Never had the chance to use “synecdochical” in a sentence before? Here Erin McKean speaks with passion about how the dictionary and the English language is changing. She believes the web, and more importantly, you, will help in changing how the English language is recorded.

10) What’s So Funny About the Web? – Ze Frank

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Okay, perhaps this one isn’t as life-transforming, but Ze Frank is a funny guy with great ideas. Between riffing on spam, Google rankings and web toys Ze will make you laugh as he makes you think.

The talks vary in length from ten to twenty minutes. You might want to bookmark this page so you can watch some of them later. Ted has many other fascinating speakers who talk about a huge range of subjects. You might just learn something. Better yet, you might just think.

Over the years here at Lifehack, we’ve discussed plenty of apps that you can use to improve your overall productivity.

There are certain ones that many of our contributors and editors (past and present) have adopted over the long-term — there are always the stalwarts that stick around. But there are also new apps that crop up every day, adding more and more depth to the app category.

Some of the apps are incredibly plain and simple, while others are more robust and offer more features than you can shake a stick at. And everyone has the one they prefer.

It’s been our job (and still is our job) to keep abreast of all of the productivity-type apps out there. As a result — and as a bit of a refresher — we’ve put together a list of 35 best productivity apps for iPhone (all categorized based on their functions) to provide you with an all-in-one resource for you.

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Table of Contents

  1. For Getting Things Done
  2. For Building Habits
  3. For Files Organization
  4. For Improving Security
  5. More Recommended Productivity Tools

For Getting Things Done

1. OmniFocus

This app is, while pricey, considered to be one of the (if not the) most robust and full-featured productivity apps on the market.

Download it here.

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2. Forest

Train yourself to put your phone down and stay focused on the task at hand by playing with this planting game. It’s fun and will help you achieve more.

Download it here.

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3. Things

Another robust choice, this app is a favorite amongst “productivityists”.[1]

Download it here.

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4. Any.Do

A beautiful-looking app that is both easy on the eyes and your wallet.

Download it here.

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5. PocketLife Calendar

This calendar app is specifically designed to be stylish and super easy-to-use. You can organize your life easily with different modern features.

Download it here.

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6. Asana

We’ve covered Asana here at Lifehack

, and it is being actively developed by a strong team committed to making collaborative task management a more efficient and effective experience.

Download it here.

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7. ToDoist

This app keeps track of everything – from simple errands to your most important projects – so you can get it all done and enjoy more peace of mind along the way.

Download it here.

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8. Calendars 5

This calendar app focuses on events that help you to keep track of upcoming events and tasks easily. It has everything you need to organize, track, and complete your to-dos.

Download it here.

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9. Clear – Tasks, Reminders & To-Do Lists

A fun and innovative list-making app that relies on swiping and pinching to make things happen. Clear created a lot of buzz when it launched, and might be the perfect to-do list gateway app for many.

Download it here.

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10. Due

A robust reminders app that lets you store and maintain reminders of all types. It’s replaced Reminders for me when it comes to the basics, and it’s worth a look if you want to keep the mundane stuff out of your head and cluttering your mind.

Download it here.

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11. Checkmark 2

I use this app

for location-based reminders (such as groceries I need to get or single items I need to pick up from various locations). Checkmark is simple to use and valuable addition to my productivity arsenal.

Download it here.

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12. TeuxDeux

Created by Tina Roth Eisenberg and Fictive Kin — TeuxDeux is simple and incredibly stellar in terms of design. If you like lists (including the popular “Someday Bucket”) and want to associate dates with tasks, then TeuxDeux will be right up your alley.

Download it here.

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13. Nirvana

For the GTD enthusiasts, there’s Nirvana. Straight from the source: “Nirvana frees your mind to focus on actually getting things done. If you’ve had enough of generic to-do lists, it’s time for Nirvana.”

Download it here.

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14. Priorities

An elegant-looking task management app that has received decent reviews,[2] this could be the one for you if you’re not a fan of OmniFocus or Things — especially if you need (or want) to share tasks with others.

Download it here.

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For Building Habits

15. Productive

With this app, you can plan your habits with an easy-to-use interface, schedule habits for any time of the day, set smart reminders for each time of the day, and stay on track with useful feedback. This app is perfect for anyone who wants to build a habit that sticks.

Download it here.

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16. Habitica: Gamified Taskmanager

You can complete tasks and build habits in a more fun way with this app. Input your Habits, your Daily goals, and your To-Do list, and then create a custom avatar. Check off tasks to level up your avatar and unlock features such as armor, pets, skills, and even quests.

Download it here.

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17. Streaks

This app follows the model of the popular “don’t break the chain method” in that you use the app to track how you are donig in the pursuit of your goal. Great for goal-setting — and an easy and elegant interface to boot.

Download it here.

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18. Remember The Milk

Another popular to-do list app, Remember The Milk has a huge following. It has plenty to offer, including the ability to share tasks with others.

Download it here.

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19. Day One Journal

When it comes to journaling, nothing really beats Day One. Its latest update added a slew of features that will make you want to start making journaling a habit.

Download it here.

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For Files Organization

20. Evernote

Touted as the world’s most widely-used productivity app, Evernote is an be used simply as a notetaking app or can be customized to be your GTD app of choice — among other things.

Download it here.

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21. Pocket

You can save an article, video, or link you want to read or watch later to Pocket from anywhere including your computer, Safari, email, and your favorite apps like Facebook, Twitter, Flipboard, and Feedly.

Download it here.

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22. Sync.Me

This app identifies unknown phone calls, warns you from annoying spam calls, and adds a caller picture to your contacts from Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Download it here.

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23. Droplr

One of the most popular file-sharing apps out there today. Straight from the source: “Stay productive on the go. Droplr for iPhone keeps you in sync and makes sharing on the iPhone natural.”

Download it here.

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24. Dropbox

Before iCloud, there was Dropbox. And there still is Dropbox, which is still widely used by both Mac and PC users all over the globe. It’s like having a flash drive on your iPhone. A must-have.

Download it here.

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For Working Smarter

25. Captio

A simple capture tool. Straight from the developers: “It’s simple. Open Captio and start typing. When you’re done, hit Send. The note is immediately delivered to your email inbox.”

Download it here.

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26. Drafts

A tremendous capture tool that allows for simple capture, followed by sending items to various applications such as OmniFocus, Things, and more.

Download it here.

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27. NoteShelf 2

This is a perfect note-taking app for you. You can take beautiful handwritten notes, type, annotate PDFs, record audio & create lists. You can organize them into categories or groups.

Download it here.

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28. Doodle

This app links directly with the Doodle service, which is one that allows you to plan and organize meetings far more efficiently and effectively. Lifehack contributor Steve Dotto has written about Doodle more in-depth here.

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Download it here.

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29. TextExpander (Legacy)

I have saved countless hours of time with TextExpander, and despite its inability to be as robust on iOS as it is on the Mac, it is still a worthy app to have in your arsenal.

Download it here.

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30. Launch Center Pro

A quick launcher for the iPhone that doesn’t just launch an app…with some of them it can do much more. This app saves you time by launching complex actions in a single tap.

Download it here.

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31. GoodReader

This may seem to be an odd one to make this list, but here are plenty of reasons why it is here with this article.

Download it here.

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32. LogMeIn

Want to be able to control your Mac from wherever you are? Then get this app.

Download it here.

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For Improving Security

33. 1Password

There is simply no better password manager out there. I’ve even put together a 1Password Emergency Kit worth looking at here.

Download it here.

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34. LastPass Password Manager

You can store passwords and logins, create online shopping profiles, generate strong passwords, track personal information in photo and audio notes.

All you have to do is remember your LastPass master password, and LastPass auto-fills web browser and app logins for you.

Download it here.

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35. Truecaller

Identify and block spammers, search for unknown numbers, and call friends easily with this app. With a community-based spam list from over 250 million users, you’ll need this app.

Download it here.

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There are plenty of other options out there (and we’ve heard from readers in the past as to what they enjoyed using), but these 40 are among the best.

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Reference

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[1]Ciara Conlon: Top Productivity Bloggers Share their #1 Tip
[2]The Next Web: Get the Right Stuff Done with Priorities