Kevin Kelly coined the term Cool Tools broadly to mean anything that can be useful. This includes hand tools, machines, books, software, gadgets, websites, maps, and even ideas.(1)The Cool Tools website is a more modern and digital version of the Whole Earth Catalog. The Whole Earth Catalog might have the best motto ever — Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish which Steve Jobs quote in his famous Stanford Commencement Address. Here is my list of technology and non-technology tools and hacks that can make your life better.
- A couple of versions ago, iOS added a Trackpad mode that lets you more easily move the cursor around a text field
- Fakespot lets you understand whether an Amazon product is packed with fake reviews. It’s great for understanding which “5 Star” Chinese startups are really making quality products
- This app lets you set the colors on the top of a couple of NYC skyscrapers. Talk about mixed reality!
- My Fitbit Alta HR is an awesome alarm clock. It’s nice to be woken up by a vibration rather than a sound and it’s personal so I can get up without waking up Abigail. Also, it automatically tracks if I wake up in the middle of the night (somewhat useful) and tracks different sleep modes (unclear how useful this is). Either way, there’s some pretty cool graphs of my sleep pattern
- For ages, I’ve been trying to figure out how to effectively archive my computer using iCloud. I finally figured it out. I create a folder called “Backups” in my iCloud drive on my PC. Then I create another folder inside the Backups folder to organize my files. Once the files are copied to iCloud, I can click on “Remove Download.” This removes the file from my computer but keeps it on the cloud.
- I used to use Speedtest.net to see how “good” my internet connection was. But with Zoom, I need to focus more on latency and packet loss so I’ve been using this Packet Loss Test.
- Recommendo is a weekly email overview of 6 Cool Tools by the editors of the Cool Tools website.
- Nontransitive dice are an awesome learning (and gambling) tool.
- In 2016, I wrote about this OXO sink strainer for Cool Tools. It was one of the best selling items of 2018 from the Cool Tools website.
Footnotes [ + ]
|1.||↑||The Cool Tools website is a more modern and digital version of the Whole Earth Catalog. The Whole Earth Catalog might have the best motto ever — Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish which Steve Jobs quote in his famous Stanford Commencement Address.|