How I Work Series: My iPhone

My last article, Core Values as a Web Developer, has recieved a lot of traffic since I published it over a month ago. For those that may not already know, my second daughter was recently born, so that is also why it has been a month since I've written a new article.

All that aside, it seems as if sharing who I am as a developer has helped many people. In that same spirit, I have decided to write about a few more things that make me the web developer that I am: my iPhone, the hardware and software that I use, and the services I am subscribed to. Some of them will be things I use as a developer, some will be things I just value in general. Since I also work for an agency, I'll explain which I use at FliteHaus and which I have adopted for my own projects.

Let's jump right in with my favorite communication tool, my iPhone 5.

The Obligatory Screenshots

iphone lock screen iphone 5 home screen​ iphone page 1

Click any of the screenshots to see a larger view.

It wouldn't be much fun for me to talk about the apps and tools I have on my phone without seeing a screenshot or two. Right off the bat, you may notice that things look a little different than usual. I have, in fact, jailbroken my phone to get access at a couple of goodies, specifically BiteSMS. BiteSMS allows me to, among other things, create and reply to text messages without having to open the message app on my phone. It also lets me reply right from my lockscreen! I may sprinkle a few other tidbits about the jailbroken-ness of my phone throughout the post, but this isn't about being jailbroken, it's about the apps and how my phone helps me keep up with my work.

The Lockscreen

iphone lock screen

The first thing you'll notice on my jailbroken lockscreen is the time and weather. Every day starts with an alarm and figuring out what to wear, so having the time and conditions front and center help me start each day on the right foot (or left foot, if that's what the day calls for).

Beyond that, I have installed LockInfo, which allows me to make immediate decisions on emails, text messages, Facebook posts, Twitter mentions, and much more. A simple swipe reveals options to "dismiss", "forward/share", and "delete". Being able to make quick decisions on some of the biggest time consumers of my day helps me to be that much more productive.

My Home Screen

iphone 5 home screen

While I won't go into everything that's happening on my home screen, I do want to look at a couple of productivity apps and strategies that help me make the best use of my iPhone. There aren't any app titles (jailbreak tweak), so I navigate them solely by the icons.

First, you'll notice I use folders for each spot on my dock. There are certain apps that I just need to get to regardless which "page" I'm on. Keeping these apps in folders in the dock make them easily accessible.

Let's look at a few apps I like and why they help me be productive:

  • The first row (camera, photos, calendar, and Google Maps) are obvious necessities. These help me keep track of the day to day occurences, personal and professional.
  • The second row is my social hub. Quick access to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (we'll get to the duplication in a moment) keep me in the loop with what is happening in the outside world.
  • Besides a few of the obvious ones, I really enjoy the Feedly app as it is my new feed reader (3rd row, 1st app) and the Hoot Suite app (4th row, 1st app) helps me manage our clients's social presences.

Then there's the matter of the two instances of Instagram. Luckily, I was able to find a tutorial (here) that explained how to get double Instagram apps on an iPhone. This keeps me from having to log out of my personal account and log into the FliteHaus account (@flitehaus) each time I want to contribute to our company stream.

My "Other" Screen

iphone page 1

Honestly, there isn't much to see here. I keep the rest of my apps in categorized folders, only because I don't want to add any more "pages" to my phone. Again, I'll just list a few of the apps that I like and why.

In the photography folder, I can't live without Autostitch or FlickrAutostitch helps me create panoramas and it does a ridiculously good job. The majority of the rest of the page is either personal productivity tools, health related, apps for my 2-year-old daughter, or default iOS  things relegated to live somewhere out of the way.

The only real apps worth noting for productivity are the time tracking apps, Timefox and Harvest. While we use Timefox for tracking our time across projects at FliteHaus, I have been toying with Harvest to see what the advantages/disadvantages are. I've heard a ton of good things about Harvest in general, so I wanted to check it out for myself.

More Apps and Tools

Was there an app that you saw that I didn't mention? Ask me in the comments below and I'll let you know what it is!

Also, add your favorite productivity apps in the comments below so we can all benefit from each other. I know I want to be aware of as many time-saving tools as possible!

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