Home Screens – Rishabh Dassani

Rishabh R. Dassani (Twitter) is a creative nonfiction writer and a management consultant at Dazné. He writes short essays on personal effectiveness for design and business leaders. You can find them at right here and also sign up for his weekly Newsflash. So Rishabh, show us your home screen.

What are some of your favorite apps?

I have used most of these apps for many years now. I find them indispensable in getting work done. Please note they may not all be available on the App Store as some of them are quite old and sport older UI.

  • Things (App Store)(Website): is a list manager that I find fast and a pleasure to use. I have found its Sync feature second to none.
  • Tweetbot (App Store)(Website): Although I have used the newer version, I find myself coming back to the older version (3.6.3).
  • Simplenote (App Store)(Website): I use it with Notational Velocity on the Mac to keep small snippets of text for quick access between my Mac and iPhone.
  • Ninjawords (Website): Super fast dictionary. Sadly, the app is no longer available. But they have a website that you can use to look up words quickly. You can even add it to your iOS home screen.
  • Articles (App Store) (Website): is my Wikipedia app of choice. It has remained without update since 2013, though that hasn’t deterred me from using it.
  • Due (App Store)(Website): I use it for time-sensitive reminders. Great app.
  • Dialvetica (App Store)(Website): I use it for dialing contacts quickly. It has remained in my Dock for years.
  • Fantastical (App Store)(Website) is great for quickly adding calendar events. Also, the week view is great in landscape orientation.
  • Evernote Scannable (App Store)(Website) works great for scanning documents quickly.
  • Overcast (App Store)(Website) is my podcast app of choice, though it is far from perfect.
  • Letterboxd (App Store)(Website) is great for keeping track of films watched.
  • Deliveries (App Store)(Website) app is an old favorite for keeping track of shipments.
  • Cloak (App Store)(Website) is great for keeping yourself (and your data) safe using VPN.
  • Fast (Website): Not really an app but you can add it to your iOS home screen. It shows you the download speed of your internet connection.
  • Productive (App Store)(Website) for keeping track of new habits.
  • 1Password (App Store)(Website) for managing my passwords and credit cards.
  • Find Friends (Website): I use it for keeping track of my family members for emergency/safety reasons.

Which app is your guilty pleasure?

YouTube. (Website) I spend way more time with it than I should. Tweetbot and Instagram are a distant second.

What app makes you most productive? 

Things on the iPhone (App Store)(Website) works great for me to capture items on the go. Later I use Things on the Mac (2.2.6) to process them.

What app do you know you’re underutilizing?

Drafts. (App Store)(Website) I only use it for a handful of things right now, though I know it can a lot more.

What is the app you are still missing?

I want my Apple Watch to track my sleep automatically. There are apps out there that let you do that but you have to turn them on/off manually.

More than an app, the feature I most want in my Apple devices is Proaction. I want these devices to learn from my use patterns. For instance, it knows that when I am at home, I turn off the Cellular Data (and turn on wifi), and when I am away, I turn on the Cellular Data (and turn off wifi). It would be great if it learns from you without you having to do it every time.

How many times a day do you use your iPhone?

I use my iPhone a few times (10+) during the day. I am trying to cut it down.

What Today View widgets are you using and why?

  • Fantastical (App Store)(Website) for viewing today’s calendar.
  • Battery widget (iPhone and Watch).
  • PCalc (App Store)(Website) for doing quick calculations.
  • Activity for keeping track of Move, Stand, Exercise.
  • Shazam (App Store) for quickly identifying music I come across.

What is your favorite feature of the iPhone?

3D Touch: I use it all the time on my most-used apps. For instance, I use this feature with the Phone app to turn on/off Cellular Data and to put phone in Low Power Mode quickly.

If you were in charge at Apple, what would you add or change?

I would have longer cycles (more than a couple of years) between hardware and software releases.

I would also make the new macOS more mac like. One of the reasons I haven’t upgraded to the newest OS is because I found its UI to be less pleasing to the eye. I also find the older iTunes 10 better. I am happily using Mountain Lion (10.8.4).

Show us your watch face.

I use the Modular watch face most of the time as it can have as many as 5 complications. The complications I use are Activity, Timer, Day and Date, Time, and Calendar. I also use a Utility watch face with the same complications. Although, there are now third-party complications available, these are the ones I have found to be essential.

What’s your wallpaper and why?

I use wallpapers from a collection called Focus Backgrounds (no longer available) designed by my friend, Joe Darnell. I have been using them on my Mac (10.8.4) and iPhone (iOS 10) for quite some time.

Anything else you’d like to share?

I am excited to share that earlier this week I put out my 100th piece for my weblog. Please have a look at the Archive page to see what tickles your fancy. And if you like something, please share it with others.

Thanks Rishabh.