top tools 2019

Since 2007 Jane Hart has asked working professionals for their top tools for learning — TopTools4Learning — and creates three lists from thousands of responses.

  1. Top 100 Tools for Personal & Professional Learning
  2. Top 100 Tools for Workplace Learning
  3. Top 100 Tools for Education

Work is learning, and learning is the work, so here are my  top 10 tools for work & learning.

10. DeepL Translator: With an international clientele and blog audience, I often get references in other languages. I find this tool much better than Google Translate, though it is available for fewer languages.

9. Diigo: Social bookmarks are a quick way for me to save a web page and find it easily. I have thousands I regularly search but I find I am using it less every year, especially as my blog grows and I have more references here, such as my Friday’s Finds.

8: Slack: This social sharing platform, with activity streams, is a great way to stay connected and work in small groups. It’s a good platform for small communities of practice as well.

7: Apple Preview: This is the productivity tool I use the most, so I can focus on learning, not fighting with applications. It lets me annotate pictures, resize images, add signatures, and most importantly ensures I do not have to use Adobe Acrobat to open PDF’s, meaning one fewer vector of malware on my system. It is a huge time-saver.

6. 1Password: I call this a tool for unlearning. This password manager reduces my cognitive load by not having to memorize any passwords as well as create passwords that are much stronger than I could do on my own. It synchronizes across all my devices and helps keep my online presence more secure.

5: Zoom: I have a paid pro account and am using this very simple video conference platform to connect and learn, such as with our Coffee Club community of practice.

4: Keynote: Apple’s presentation application has enabled me to improve my slide presentations, through its simplicity.

3: Feedly: My latest feed reader, or aggregator, to keep track of blogs and news sites via RSS.

2: Tweetbot: Next to my blog, Twitter is my best learning tool and allows me to stay connected to a diverse network. I use Tweetbot on Mac and iOS as it has no advertising or tracking and has a cleaner interface. With all of its flaws, Twitter can be a good platform for learning if you actively filter and mute.

1: WordPress: Powers my blog (+3,200 posts), which is the core of my sense-making. It’s easy to use, has a huge community, and there are many plug-ins and additions available. I also use it to deliver my online PKM workshop.

7 Responses to “top tools 2019”

  1. Jessica Demetroules-Barber

    Hi Harold,

    Thanks so much for this post! As a new educational tech major, this helps narrow down the choices of apps/sites I should be using. Do you have any other suggestions specific to using educational technology in a history/social studies classroom?

    Jess Barber


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