Creativity and Productivity Enhancement Utilities

Market overview of recommendable creativity and productivity enhancement utilities, especially in connection with the creation of technical documentation and user assistance

FreeMind

Price: free (open source)

Freeplane

Price: free (open source)

XMind

Price: free (open source)

vym – View Your Mind

Price: free (open source)

Blumind

Price: free (freeware)

Mindjet MindManager

Price: approx. €399; there are also free versions for iPad, iPhone, and Android available

iMindMap

Price: approx. €190

Visual Mind

Price: approx. $109 (“Basic”) and $249 (“Business”)

MindGenius Business

Price: starting at approx. €176

ConceptDraw MINDMAP

Price: starting at approx. $199

DropMind

Price: approx. $99

Inspiration

Price: approx. $59

TaskArchitect

Price: approx. $400 (“Standard”) and $1250 (“Pro”)

AXON Idea Processor

Price: approx. $135; there’s also free version with limited features available

Visual Understanding Environment (VUE)

Price: free (open source)

textroom

Full-screen text editor that provides a distraction-free environment.

Price: free (open source)

FocusWriter

Distraction-free writing environment combined with a hide-away user interface that you can access by moving the mouse to the edges of the screen.

Price: free (open source)

Dark Room

Another full-screen text editor.

Price: free (freeware)

JDarkRoom

Very similar to Dark Room. Also available for the Mac.

Price: free (freeware)

Q10

Full-screen editor for plain text files.

Price: free (freeware)

OmmWriter

Lets you apply various background colors and typing sounds while writing.

Price: free (freeware); Extended version: donation

Free

Distraction-free editor for the Mac.

Price: approx. €5

lexiCan

Helps to organize all sorts of information.

Price: approx. €40; there’s also a free standard edition available

CaptureSaver

Lets you gather, save, and organize information into a personal offline reference library.

Help authoring tools

You can also use a help authoring tool for organizing and storing information. If you don’t already use any other help authoring tool, HelpNDoc is an interesting free option for this purpose.

Price: free for personal use

HTTrack

Downloads entire web sites for off-line browsing and archiving. Rearranges the original site’s relative link-structure so that all links within the downloaded site work locally.

Price: free (open source)

Linkman

Advanced, browser-independent bookmark manager.

Price: approx. $25 (“Pro”); there’s also free version available for noncommercial use

Timesheets Express

Flexible time tracking software for individuals and small organizations.

Price: approx. €98

Subject Marker

Utility for Microsoft Outlook that assigns a predefined subject category to your emails with just two clicks. This helps you to identify the content of an email more quickly and makes finding and retrieving archived emails more efficient.

Price: approx. €10

A Note

Creates sticky notes on the Windows desktop. Also lets you configure alarms and sync notes with other users.

Price: free (open source)

Mozilla Sunbird

Cross-platform calendar application.

Price: free (open source)

project-open

Web-based ERP and project management software. Integrates CRM, sales, project planning, project tracking, collaboration, timesheets, invoicing and payments.

Price: free (open source)

OpenProj

Project management software similar to MS Project. OpenProj has equivalent functionality, a similar user interface, and can open existing MS Project files.

Price: free (open source)

Open Workbench

Powerful desktop application for project scheduling and management.

Price: free (open source)

Ganttproject

Project management software for small projects.

Price: free (open source)

Agilewords

Lets you review documents centrally via the web. All review comments can be made and discussed in an online version of the document, without exchanging multiple emails and files.

Price: approx. $49 to $154 per month for up to 10 authors

Balabolka

Text-To-Speech (TTS) program that can use all voices installed on your computer. By listening to your texts instead of reading them, you can discover many mistakes that you otherwise would overlook.

Price: free (freeware)

True Crypt

On-the-fly disk encryption software.

Price: free (open source)

7Zip

File compression and archiving tool.

Price: free (open source)

FileZilla

FTP and SFTP client and server.

Price: free (open source)

Synchredible

Synchronizes folders.

Price: free for private use; approx. €25 for commercial use

WinDirStat

Disk usage statistics viewer and basic cleanup tool. Based on the Linux program KDirStat.

Price: free (open source)

1-4a rename

Powerful file renaming utility.

Price: free (freeware)

 

 

Some providers of free and commercial backup and recovery solutions are:

KDiff3

Compares or merges two or three text files or directories.

Price: free (open source)

Compare It!

Text comparison utility for text files, Microsoft Word files, Excel files, RTF files, and PDF files.

Price: approx. €27

WinMerge

Visual text file comparison and merging tool.

Price: free (open source)

DiffPDF

Compares PDF files page by page, either textually or visually.

Price: free (open source)

DOCU-PROOF

Compares documents. Finds changes in fonts, sizes, deletions, inserts, spelling, and location. Capable of inspecting unlike documents, for example a Microsoft Word file vs. a PDF file.

Price: not published

ZoomIt

Screen zoom and basic annotation tool for presentations.

Price: free (freeware)

Sizer

Resizes any window to a predefined size. Can be helpful when creating screen captures of windows that must have given dimensions.

Price: free (freeware)

Ditto

Extension to the standard Windows clipboard.

Price: free (open source)

DM2

Provides a number of Windows enhancements. Makes it possible to set a window to stay on top of all other windows. Adds an extra button to all default Windows Open and Save dialogs. This button enables you to select user-defined favorite folders and files.

Price: free (open source)

wordmark

Helps you to choose a suitable typeface by writing a small text in all typefaces that are available on your computer.

Price: free (web application)

TextCount

Statistics program for translators and authors who bill their work on the basis of typed texts.

Price: approx. €79

Total Assistant

Word count, character and line count tool.

Price: approx. $30

PractiCount and Invoice

Counts text in multiple files of various formats and generates invoices based on the results.

Price: approx. $60

Take Command

Makes the Windows command prompts easier to use and more powerful.

Price: approx. $100

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This page was last updated 07/2014.

 

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