Time is the most precious commodity. We can’t create more time, so the best we can do is to save it. Through shortcuts and hacks, these websites and apps will help save time in many activities, and it all adds up.
Technology is all about speed, isn’t it? It helps us do things faster, or enables shortcuts that get the more done in less time. The internet is here to help you gain information faster by summarizing books or YouTube videos, or level-up your computer usage by learning keyboard shortcuts. It’s all about saving time and making the best use of it.
1. Sipreads (Web): Free Book Summaries by Real People
Don’t have the time to read a full book, but still want to know its best ideas? Sipreads is a free newsletter by two people who read books and summarize their salient points. Basile Samel and Ali Salah send one new book every week, while you can browse some of the previous summaries on the website.
Sipreads focuses on self-learning books, so you won’t find a summary of the latest Dan Brown novel here. Some of the famous titles already covered include Atomic Habits, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, The Start-up of You, and How to Win Friends and Influence People. Nuggets of personal development wisdom in short time is the goal here.
The summaries are usually seven to ten minute reads. Both Basile and Ali have a concise writing style that turns the book’s major points into something like a Medium article, full of sub-headers and bullet points. And if you find that it works for you, then you can go read the full book. But you’re never left out of the conversation when people start discussing the book.
2. Summarize the Internet (Web): Linguistic AI Summarizes Any Online Article
Writers on the internet often drone on and fluff up their writing with unnecessary words to lengthen the material and make it seem more authoritative, like this sentence. Don Patrick wants to cut the fat and give you an instant summary of any article with his AI extension.
Summarize the Internet isn’t the first extension offering this, but it takes a different approach. Patrick, an amateur language programmer with a deep interest in AI, ditched statistical methods and came up with a combination of word choice, sentence weaving, and story flow. As he explains, the target was for the summarizer to extract what the writer found important, minus what the reader finds unimportant (like introductions, examples, speculation, etc.)
After trying a few of these summary-making extensions, I can say Summarize the Internet is better at drawing out important points than others. Typically, a good article reduces to 50%, while a weak article reduces to 30% of its original length. While the extension’s pop-up pane is open, you can skim the main article in the tab too, in case you want to cross-reference.
3. FizzD (Chrome): Summarize YouTube Videos Into Chapters and Highlights
Someone links you to a long YouTube video. Is it actually interesting or useful? FizzD uses AI to go through the video and summarize it into chapters, highlights, and key concepts, so you can browse a video like it was an article with sub-headers.
Once you install the extension, you’ll see a “Fizz It” button next to the Share and Save buttons under the video. Click it and wait for a minute for FizzD to work its magic. Soon, the video will have a few yellow dots, marking what FizzD thinks are chapters within the long video. Hover over a dot to see the chapter title, and click to jump to it.
In the top-right corner of the video pane, you’ll see two new overlays: Highlights and Key Concepts.
Highlights is a text summary of the main points of the video, but you can’t use them as timestamps. Key Concepts show up as blue dot timestamps, so you can see where one of the main subjects was discussed in different chapters.
FizzD is a fascinating implementation of AI in videos. It doesn’t work with every YouTube video and seems to be at its best in educational videos like TED talks and webinars.
Download: Fizzd for Chrome (Free)
4. Use the Keyboard (Web): Gorgeous Collection of Best Keyboard Shortcuts
Stop reaching for your mouse or trackpad to go from one window to another. Just press Alt+Tab (or Command+Tab) to switch windows. The most amount of time you can save on a computer is by learning keyboard shortcuts like this.
Use the Keyboard (UTK) is a gorgeous collection of keyboard shortcuts for the most-used programs, apps, and websites in 2020. It includes guides for software like Zoom, Slack, Gmail, Notion, Chrome, Netflix, Trello, and a bunch of other offline and online apps that you use on a daily basis.
It’s especially nice that the guide includes web apps because often such keyboard shortcut guides ignore them and you have to rely on browser shortcuts alone.
With one switch, UTK can flip between Windows and macOS shortcuts. You can also check the original reference for any sheet of shortcuts, which usually comes from the developer’s official notes. UTK’s neat and tidy interface is fantastic to look at, and you might want to convert it into PDFs to print.
While UTK serves apps, it doesn’t have shortcuts for operating systems. So make sure you check out our master list of all essential Windows keyboard shortcuts, which you can also download for free.
5. The Skullery and Hurry The Food Up (Web): Quick Recipes Without Fluff
The internet is full of food writers sharing recipes, but there’s always a long preamble, right? The mood they were in, some story about how the recipe was handed down, and all those things you don’t need. These two recipe websites are about cooking quickly without wasting time.
The Skullery simply gives you recipes quickly. No registration, no meandering preambles, it’s all about cooking immediately. Your browser will remember favorites, you can change measures on-the-fly without going to another converter, and you can quickly browse or search for anything. The recipe has step-by-step instructions, which you can cross-off within the browser app too. It just works.
Hurry The Food Up is a vegetarian cooking blog with a time-oriented approach. Speed is key here, with most recipes being under 30 minutes. And yes, that includes both prep time and cook time. Choose your type of diet, time, and meal course to filter the recipes. Hurry The Food Up is also available as an app on Android.
Download: Hurry The Food Up for Android (Free)
Save More Time by Learning to Manage It
These apps are excellent time-saving shortcuts to many of the things you do daily. But technology is only going to go so far in freeing up time for you. If you truly want to squeeze more out of your daily 24 hours, you need to learn time management and set goals.
Read the full article: 5 Time-Saving Websites & Apps for the Best Shortcuts