The Freelancer’s Toolset

I found something awesome on LifeHacker a moment ago that smArtists may appreciate. It’s called The Freelancer’s Toolset. It’s a list of 100 web applications to enhance freelancers’ productivity.

It looks like a fantastic list! Here’s a few highlights from it:

  • Stikkit is a central sticky note repository that interfaces with apps like Outlook. It stores names, addresses, birthdays and other snippets of information. It’s also open for collaboration even for people that don’t have or use Stikkit… and you can email it notes, too, which is pretty cool.
  • NetVibes which I use. Basically it’s the ultimate customizable homepage, much like My Yahoo, except more flexible. You can turn any RSS feed into its own window, as well as drop all sorts of kickass productivity applications onto one page. It even has separate tabs you can load up with different categories of information. For example, I have a tab that contains a calendar, my personal life todo list, upcoming holidays and weather. On another tab, I have a series of small boxes that contain RSS feeds to every major news site I visit. On another tab, I have useless crap I waste time with. :) There’s a huge, thriving community of amateur developers that make modules and custom applications for it to make it infinitely extendable. I highly recommend checking out NetVibes.
  • Google Calendar – I use this as an embedded window in NetVibes. It’s simple, straightforward and fun to use. I also set it up to email and text message me on my phone anytime I have an upcoming appointment so I never forget. It’s indispensible!
  • FreshBooks – The Fastest Way to Invoice! This is a really cool and well-positioned company. Invoicing can be a bit of a bitch and this can help you keep track of it more easily. You can manage a huge series of invoices, send them by snail mail through the website, track the time spent on the job, accept payment online, manage work orders and generate reports. What a kickass idea!
  • ConceptShare – An online visual collaboration tool. Basically, add notes or paintovers to anything you need to, and have small sticky notes that can turn into miniature discussion threads that float on top of the image and have pointers everywhere. This is so damn cool, I may try using it myself with my contractors.
  • Meebo – Gain access to every single IM app on the planet through their website without downloading or installing anything. This is such a mind-bogglingly great idea. smArtists, listen up — IM communication is incredibly useful, and offering it can often be a good thing. Whenever possible, offer it as a quicker alternative for email for smaller, quicker questions. Even if you don’t use that app normally, Meebo can help. :)
  • K7 – A terrible name but an awesome service. This will set up a temporary phone number for you to receive faxes and voicemail messages, which are emailed to you. What a great idea!
  • Nolo – Got a legal question that pertains to contracting? Have it answered here and check out their articles and how-tos.

Any other gems I might have missed?

5 thoughts on “The Freelancer’s Toolset

  1. Eric, COOL! That’s a fantastic link… thanks, man! I’m gonna dig into it!! :)

    Sanjay: Excellent! Thanks for the link, I’ll take a look at this one, too!

  2. Google calendar has dropped my data a couple of times – has anyone else had this problem. I’m now a little scared to use it for anything more important than xmas and birthdays.

Leave a Reply