After installing Xubuntu in lieu of Lubuntu I took a look at what applications I use on my laptop. Chrome is open almost all the time for email, blogging, checking finances, etc., so if you want to know about Chrome I’ll let Google it.

Desktop open-source applications make up most of the applications I use that are installed on my machine, with the exception of Chrome and Crashplan for Small Business. Sidenote: I went with Crashplan Pro after they ended support for personal users because of their end-to-end encryption, continuous backups, and support for Windows and Linux users

  • LibreOffice: Have been using LibreOffice instead of Microsoft Office for close to ten years with only minor complaints regarding formatting when opening documents between Office and LibreOffice. However, the formatting issues have gone down significantly. LibreOffice supports several extensions, such as Solver (for operations research optimization problems), so that is very helpful.
  • VLC (audio and video files): Very useful for playing and editing videos and music files. Need to splice some mp3s for continuous playback? Play a DVD? Make a music playlist? All accomplished, all for free.
  • GIMP (images): The GNU Image Manipulation Program is a free substitute for Adobe Photoshop. I am not a master manipulator, but this program will allow you to touch up images, create vector graphics, and copy human faces to future memes waiting to go viral.
  • Zim wiki (notes, writing projects): Useful for linking project notes, calendars, or any work you want to show linkages to. Also useful for blog page edits not yet ready for draft primetime.
  • Calibre (ereader manager): Got an ereader? Like ebooks? Calibre can manage, convert, and otherwise edit your ebooks regardless of your hardware.

The below list of three web-based applications I use everyday for exciting tasks such as password management, email subscriptions, and to-do lists.

  • Lastpass (password manager): There are password managers like it, but this one is mine. Used to use a spreadsheet with all my passwords, with a mediocre password, until I got wise six years ago.
  • Gmail (seriously?): If you don’t know what this is, I commend your for your ignorance of cultural technological phenomenon over the past twenty years.
  • Todoist (to-do list): This puppy works on my Android phone, work computer, and home laptop. You can label tasks, add them to projects, share tasks with others, and (best of all) implements a markup language that recognizes date references such as “File taxes on April 15th,” Take wife to dinner on 14 February” or “Train at Jedi Academy on Yavin 4 tomorrow.”

So if you are looking for open-source software for creating documents, editing videos, editing photos, or managing your productivity, consider the above options.

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