New to the MacOldie household is Virgin's 50 megabit cable broadband. Up to now I've had their 20 mbps offering so I was keen to take advantage of the new high-speed service available in many parts of the country, including my area of west London. Installation meant a new modem (the previous model was at least 10 years old, so about time). Speed tests during the day show that I am getting near enough to 50 mpbs but this slows down to around 25 mbps at peak times, presumably when neighbours are home from work and using bandwidth. So far so good. A big advantage for me (see my post on Carbonite) is the 1.6 mbps upload speed. This is really useful when a typical hard-drive backup to a cloud can take many days. With the new connection I'm achieving 10GB a day, which is pretty fast.
It is just so easy to download iPhone applications that most owners have page after page of apps, many of them seeking to do the same job. I see there are now over 10,000 applications to choose from. Many are free (which surprises me, given the amount of work that has been done) but the majority are cheap (under £5).
- Omni Focus, a superb task manager and GTD (Getting Thing Done) application that synchronises seamlessly with OF Desktop on any number of Macs. This is by far the best GTD system for iPhone and Mac users.
- Evernote: This is without a doubt the best note-taking system which can be synchronised (via the web) with Macs and PCs or can be accessed on Evernote's web site.
- iBlueSky: Simply the best mind-mapping app for the iPhone. Maps can be exported into PC or Mac systems such as MindJet Mind Manager.
- Bloomberg: An essential free app if you want to keep up with financial information or check your portfolio during the day.
- NetNewsWire brings together all your RSS feeds and is a quick way of browsing all news sources.
- Splash Money: I have been a long-time user of the Splash Wallet suite on Palm and Windows Mobile devices, so it's good to find Splash Money, Splash ID and Splash Shopper available for the iPhone. All synchronise with desktop applications. I use Splash Money daily to enter cash transactions. At the end of every month I transfer the totals for each category of expense to my main accounts system on the Mac (MoneyDance).
- Mental Case: A quirky one here. Mental Case is a fantiastic flashcard application for studying anything. I'm currently using it for improving my Greek and have downloaded a large number of flashcards from the Flashcard Exchange.
- Typing Genius: No doubt, this is the best typing tutor for the iPhone keyboard. I've increased my two-thumb typing speeds and accuracy dramatically in the last two weeks.