How I use the iPad as a Productivity Device with Craft.do
In this post I will talk about my recent iPad productivity setup as a laptop replacement on the go.
Working on a business is similar to working out. Working on it daily leads to results over several months. And we want to get shredded. The best way to get shredded it to setup the environment to make working out easy and even fun.
Why Taking Notes Matters
A good tool has to grow with the project. It starts with a blank canvas. Then you add a few bullet points. After a while you see the patterns to group similar bullet points under headlines like “product features" or "marketing". But you just have a rough idea to use a blog as a marketing channel, so there is nothing else to write. You don’t want to make it a page yet, let alone introduce a new tool just for marketing. It has to grow organically. Especially when you add a team members who needs to dig through your thoughts.
What else is out there?
For some time I am missing a tool to launch new projects weather it is an NGO, an app, a video or a business. I have been using Smartsheet, Google Docs, Almanac and Notion, but haven’t been happy so far.
Don’t get me wrong, Smartsheet has amazing GANTT charts for very complex projects with lots of nested tasks and dependencies with multiple teams.
Google Docs is good for collaborating on simple projects in real time.
Notion has its database capabilities and I am sure you can organise your life with it, but I haven’t become cozy with it yet. Mainly because it is not a native app and therefore feels slow. Almanac is nice but it doesn’t have a mobile app at all.
I recently fell in love with Craft.do. The downside, it is iOS first. It has a WebApp, but as of May 2022 it is not nicely usable on an android devices (change to desktop mode on your browser in the craft web app). If you can live with that, it's a stellar experience so far. Bullet points grow into headlines, headlines can be turned into pages. And before you know, you have a business plan draft. Pages are linked and can be shared with advisors or new team members. They update themselves, so no need to send out a new version of final draft version 2. But most importantly it accommodates the thought process of bringing a new project to life through writing.
Writing means clarity of thought. It avoids repeatedly thinking about the same thing over and over again and getting ideas out of you brain to make room for new ones. It allows you to get back to an idea at any point and reevaluate their validity. This avoids shiny new object syndrome.
To work on the go, I have been using an iPad for ten years now. It has become a canvas, great for consuming video and for writing - with a pen. But it hasn’t replaced my Laptop so far mainly because of the keyboard. There are bluetooth keyboards, which is a second item to carry around, or Apples smart over, which has a terrible writing experience.
The Apple Magic Keyboard is really nice but 300 bucks for a keyboard which will probably not work for the next generation iPad. Sorry.
Luckily Logitech has come up with the Combo Touch Keyboard. Not only does it have a keyboard, it also has a trackpad and it is fully detachable when you want to watch a movie. It costs around 140 EUR but it turns a tablet into a laptop. This is highly valuable for anyone that needs to write long pages of text for a business plan or blog post like this one.
The Craft app (Free plan, 4 $ personal, 10 $ Business) together with the Logitech combo touch keyboard (140 EUR) turns the iPad from a consumption into a productivity device. Yes, it works as a laptop replacement if you don’t have special needs like virtual machines or XCode. It’s fast, it's quiet and it's light. And most of all, it's fun to use. You won’t be disappointed.