Staying Productive

My Home Screen


One thing I noticed very soon as I began using my iPad as a tool and not a toy, was that to stay productive I needed to find a way to keep my Home Screen organized.  I had apps all over the place and was getting "tired" scrolling between screens.  My solution was to put all my tier one apps on the first home screen.  These would be things like bookmarks for sites I go to all the time, like the Iowa Core and UNI sites, photography apps, like the camera and Adobe Photoshop, as well as a number of other apps you can more or less see in the picture above.  

I also have a tier two Home Screen that I keep apps I use on an occasion.  Thes are things like Dropbox, calculator, drawing apps, reference apps, etc.  Typically I don't use these on a daily basis.

I also have a tier three Home Screen that is used entirely for games, movies, kid friendly apps, etc.  These are more fun type things I do when I'm not working.  In otherwords, apps I don't touch while I'm working, but want to keep on my iPad for when I'm in the car or when I'm with my son and we want to play/develop his skills on the iPad.

Now there is another way I increase my productivity and that's through the use of the "dock" style bar at the bottom of my screen.  The dock shows up on all Home Screens and is what I consider my top tier apps I need to have access to at all times.  You'll notice that on my dock I have two web browsers and four communication apps.  There is a limit of six apps in the dock, which is really a decent amount of apps to have on the dock.  Anymore and I'd likely get lost.

The iPad is only as powerful as you make it so ensure you are making the most of its potential by staying organized and productive!

Creating Folders

The main draw of the iPad are the apps.  The apps is what makes the iPad such a powerful device, but one thing that happens very quickly is the screen filling up with too many apps that users spend a considerable amount of time scrolling between home screens looking for an app.  This doesn't have to be the case however!

A useful feature on the iPad is the ability to create folders for your apps.  Here's what you do:

Group Apps by Type

Step 1: When creating folders I like to keep my apps organized by type.  In this picture there are two magazine apps: Wired and National Geographic.  To save space I'll put them into a group together.

Press and Hold on an App

Step 2: Press and hold on an app.  This will allow you to move the app.  Be careful not to press the X.

Drag One App on Top of Another

Step 3: When you drag an app on top of another app, it will create a folder.  A name for the folder will be created automatically, but you are able to change the name to anything of your liking.  For example, I am going to change the name of this folder to Magazines.

Saving Space

Step 4: The space savings appear rather quickly as you download more and more apps.  In this picture there are 5 folders, with a total of 15 apps stored in the folders, in addition to the 8 apps located on the screen.  Without the folder, I wouldn't have enough room on this single screen for all my apps (Max of 20 app spaces per screen).  This means I'd have to scroll to another page to see all my apps.