Tool tips with Tim Ciano

Tim Ciano

April 8, 2015

Tool tips is a regular series where Hightail employees share their life’s most essential apps, online services and websites. Next up is Systems Administrator, Tim Ciano.

Tim Ciano's tool tipsWorking tool
As a recovering app junkie, I have been through an adequately long rehabilitation process to achieve a minimalist app-life. Minimalism is key to keeping it lean and clean. As a strong proponent of modernizing IT processes and services in order to provide better end user experiences, become more efficient operationally and to reduce the impact of IT on the company’s bottom line, I have found that 1Password is an amazing resource. The daily grind of corralling runaway systems to complete tasks while simultaneously discussing designing less fragmented systems can feel like herding cats, but 1Password allows me to keep track of complex passwords quickly and helps me hyper-task between systems. It’s easy, clean and available on multiple platforms so I have it handy regardless of where I launch my navigation session. It also allows creating variable password complexity beyond the human imagination without having to memorize each individually complex password.

Although I enjoy console gaming (PS4 is my poison of choice), I’ll leave that out of this section. The app that I would say I find invaluable is Nike+. It just helps me get going and allows me to track progress on how active I’ve been for the past couple of years. You can share out to friends and family on Facebook for cheers or get a customized program (if you’re into that sort of thing). I particularly love the heat maps. You can find out the most popular running routes in a given area based on other Nike+ users, challenge and compete with them on the leaderboards or design your own routes. It’s a great digital coach that also allows you to generate those power playlists that push you when you need it most. You can also buy gear conveniently from the app as well…the shiniest newest sneakers at your fingertips.

General resource
As someone who appreciates patterns I have grown to love Sigalert. Sigalert is a great app to find out traffic patterns and current conditions on freeways. I heavily rely on it to evade the heavy traffic load windows in the Bay Area (yes there is a pattern). The interface is quite simplistic almost as if to spurn design aesthetics. But it beats almost every map app out there when reporting accidents, current conditions etc. I’ve been able to optimize the best hours of productivity by spending less time and mental “road rage restraining” energy because of Sigalert.

Credit Karma is my other favorite resource. Like the Nike app does fitness, Credit Karma aids with personal finance “fitness” habits.

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