Plenty of apps promise to boost productivity but require you to maneuver around screens that are a visual downer. TeuxDeux to the rescue (resceux?)! A collaboration among Tina Roth Eisenberg, FictiveKin, and Jonnie Hallman, the to-do app was created to be simple enough to compete with a piece of paper and beautiful enough that users wouldn't mind -- and might even enjoy -- looking at it all day. Freshly upgraded and relaunched TeuxDeux is faster, mobile-friendly, and includes new features such as custom lists and recurring to-dos. Put a free 30-day trial (it's a few dollars a month thereafter) at the top of your priority list.
After years of hype around the cliché of "thinking outside the box," the latest e-business craze is all about surprises contained within them. Expert DIYers and aspiring makers alike will delight in Whimseybox, which delivers a selection of craft supplies directly to your doorstep. A $15 monthly subscription includes delivery of project materials and instructions as well as a 5x7" art print, all tucked inside a reusable storage box. Beyond the boxes, founders Alicia DiRago and Patrick Navarro are looking "to create a community where people can find great materials, project ideas, inspiration and education about all kinds of DIY and craft projects."
Get your craft on with For the Makers, which delivers DIY tutorials to your inbox and hand-selected materials to your doorstep. "It’s one part magazine, one part coolest craft store ever," say founders Katie Covington and Janet Crowther, who honed their sourcing skills during stints at companies such as Kate Spade and Anthropologie. "We search high and low for materials you can't find anywhere else, and when we can't find it we have it made." At $29-per-month, For the Makers will dispatch to your doorstep materials for four projects that range from jewelry and wearable accessories to home and paper goods, along with access to tutorials from expert designers.
Translating your photos from analog to digital is a snap with Lomography's Smartphone Film Scanner. Turn on the portable device's backlight, feed in your 35mm film (remember that?), take a photo of it using your smartphone, and then use your phone's camera or the specially-developed app (iPhone and Android versions available) to edit and share the freshly digitized images. At $59, it's an affordable and speedy solution to film scanning that works for color negative, color slide and black & white films.
Shutterstock is heading upmarket with Offset, a collection of royalty-free imagery from top photographers and illustrators. Announced yesterday, the new brand will offer image buyers a simple, transparent licensing model ($250-$500 buys unlimited print and online usage for a particular image) for assignment-quality work from the likes of National Geographic, illustrator and typographer Rian Hughes, and photographer Maura McEvoy. Be among the first to browse the Offset library of 25,000 images by requesting an invitation to the private beta phase.
Stop, collaborate, and listen with Apollo, a handy app that promises "a better way to work together" for a range of creative types and their clients. Developed by UK-based 27stars, the free app offers a Web-based (login, with a single click, from anywhere), nothing-to-install approach to online proofing and other project tasks, making it ideal for graphic and Web designers, photographers and anyone else working collaboratively with images, documents, digital sketches or other documents.