I had a bunch of draft posts running the last few days, but instead I thought I’d do a bit more of a list. Some things just don’t require an entire blog post’s worth of explanation. So here we go:
I hadn’t had the opportunity to use foursquare until I got to SF earlier this week, but boy has it proven to be a lifesaver. Since I’m pretty much new to this area, it’s been great to just fire up the iPhone app, let it find my location, and then show me a list of places nearby. It’s been most useful when I’m just sitting in my apartment looking for something to do. I fire it up and pick something that’s within a few blocks. Even more useful has been the actual website where I’ve been using the to-do list feature to organize things that I want to see and try in San Francisco. This way, while I’m out and about, I can just use the iPhone app, find my location, and see if any of my To-Do items are nearby. It’s a great way to get acquainted with a new city.
2. I Will Teach You To Be Rich
I’ve been reading Ramit’s blog for a while now and when the book came out, I scooped it right up. As a recent college grad, it’s been incredibly useful. I’ve had to pay bills and all that before, but I’ve never really put much thought or effort into managing my money. As an “adult” now, I think it’s time to start caring about my spending habits and how I save for the future. Ramit shows you how to get started and leaves aside all of the stuffy holier-than-thou attitudes you’re used to seeing from financial help “gurus.” I especially love the Money Diaries series. I highly recommend that you take a look at the blog and even the book. Especially if you’re under the age of 30.
Along the lines of getting better at the whole money thing comes Mint. I joined Mint back, back, back in the day as an experiment to see if it would help me save/not spend so carelessly. It was still a bit too raw back then, but they have been adding features almost non-stop and now I can’t imagine my bank accounts without it. Not only do you get to keep track of every transaction, but as of earlier this week, you can now make really neat budgets (I know, bad word, but really, read Ramit’s blog) and have a one-stop shop for all of your money matters. This includes student loans, which, if you’re like me, is a major part of your financial woes. Even Gina Trapani, Lifehacker extraordinaire loves Mint. You should too.
4. Footnotes of Mad Men
This one probably seems completely out of left field. And it is. But I find it so interesting that I just had to post it here. If you’re a fan of Man Men, you’ll love this blog. It links to some really cool stuff explaining the various references in Man Men (see the one about the Ant Farm from the season premiere). Maybe I’m just a huge nerd, but I can’t get enough of this site! (hat tip to kottke.org for introducing it into my life!)
No, not that kind. This one is a bit of a hidden gem. It will change your life. Caffeine is an an app for your menu bar (that’s if you’re a Mac user!) and with the click of a button you can disable your screensaver and sleep mode. It’s wonderful for when you’re streaming video from hulu, netflix, abc.com or even when you’re using the DVD Player app. No more running across the room to wiggle the mouse because your screen went to sleep right at the good part! And, best of all, it’s free!
So that’s it. I think I might do a few more of these in the future, but this is what I’ve been using in the last few weeks and I hope it’s at least somewhat useful. If you have any suggestions for Things I’ll Love, leave me a note in the comments!