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Upgrade Your Life: The Lifehacker Guide to Working Smarter, Faster, Better [Paperback]

Gina Trapani
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Lifehacker: The Guide to Working Smarter, Faster, and Better Lifehacker: The Guide to Working Smarter, Faster, and Better 4.3 out of 5 stars (9)
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Book Description

28 Mar 2008 0470238364 978-0470238363 2nd Edition
Whether you’re a Mac or Windows user, there are tricks here for you in this helpful resource. You’ll feast on this buffet of new shortcuts to make technology your ally instead of your adversary, so you can spend more time getting things done and less time fiddling with your computer. You’ll learn valuable ways to upgrade your life so that you can work and live more efficiently, such as: empty your e–mail inbox, search the Web in three keystrokes, securely save Web site passwords, automatically back up your files, and many more.


Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 2nd Edition edition (28 Mar 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470238364
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470238363
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 2.7 x 23.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 494,048 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

Review

“A productivity manual–slash–computer book, this book is packed full of tips…Buy this book. Immediately.” Photo Pro June 2008 “Easy to dip in and out of, you won’t fail find something here that will speed up your work.”. net August 2008

Review

"A productivity manual-slash-computer book, this book is packed full of tips...Buy this book. Immediately."

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful book 19 Jun 2009
Format:Paperback
The Lifehacker site is one of my regular hits on the web. This book is a really useful round up of some of the fundamental tips. I guess it is getting a bit out of date, but I still love dipping in the book now and again.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great tips! 28 July 2009
Format:Paperback
This book is a dip in and out book. It gives you great tips for both Windows and Mac platforms. Plus it gives you web addresses to things you wouldn't have went on before for services. This book is great for anyone from a new computer user to experts, with difficultly levels with every tip. Great book!
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By dgt
Format:Paperback
I bought this book for a mate who is totally computer obsessed (hobby) - he loves it.
I bought it then for me to help with my e-mail overload and work organisation.
It is superb.
If I can implement a tenth of it, I may release enough time to finish the rest of the book.
I also recommend her web site.
Dave
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6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Special 13 July 2009
Format:Paperback
This book is nothing special with many tips MAC specific which means they are useless to me.

A lot of it is obvious and some of it is just a list of useful applications you could read about anywhere.

Disappointing.

-- Lee
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  27 reviews
78 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The book will pay for itself 8 April 2008
By J. Kelly - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I've read the entire book and implemented quite a few of the Hacks in my daily routine. Based on the amount of time I've already saved in just a few weeks, this book has easily paid for itself 2 or 3 times.

Some of the specific Hacks that I'm using and their results:

* Email Control - My Inbox is empty and I've finally got my email under control with filters and the 3-folders system created (I added a 4th folder - Print - for emails that I want a hard copy of but my laptop isn't connected to my printer)

* Digital Photos - I've got all my photos tagged and organized for fast searches

* Repetitive Typing - how did I ever get along without Texter???

* Google Calendar - I love using my mobile phone to update my calendar when I'm on the road or need to post a quick reminder that Calendar will email and text me.

I've still got a few things from the book on my To-Do List:

* Get my bookmarks moved over to del.icio.us as described in the book
* Setup my automated data backup to my external hard drive (I do it manually right now)

Gina's written a great book that really works. The book is platform independent and she tells you when something is Mac or Windows specific. She also lets you know the skill level (Easy, Medium, Advanced) that a Hack will require.

I enjoyed reading it and will probably go through it again soon to make sure I've implemented any hacks that can make my life easier - I'm sure I missed a few.
42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The second edition is just as good as the first... 1 Aug 2008
By Thomas Duff - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I remember reading the first edition of Gina Trapani's Upgrade Your Life: The Lifehacker Guide to Working Smarter, Faster, Better and thinking how wonderful it was. Of course, when the second edition came out, I had to get that one too. And as with the first one, I have all sorts of post-it notes scattered throughout the book for reference and "go back and try this" notes. Well worth the time and money you spend here.

Contents:
Control Your Email; Organize Your Data; Trick Yourself into Getting Done; Clear Your Mind; Firewall Your Attention; Streamline Common Tasks; Automate Repetitive Tasks; Get Your Data To Go; Master The Web; Hone Your Computer Survival Skills; Manage Multiple Computers; Index

Over the span of the chapters above, Trapani presents 116 different "hacks" that you can incorporate into your daily computer life to, well... work smarter, faster, and better. As with most books that are a compilation of different tips, some will resonate strongly with your current needs, while others are skimming material that may not be relevant. For instance, the hacks in the first chapter, Organize Your Data, hit home. I'm working towards consolidating multiple email addresses with Gmail, and I'm cutting down the number of folders I have, relying on search to find what I need. Master The Web also had some cool tricks, like having multiple home pages in Firefox and using Google Notebook for web clippings. I wasn't quite into the Managing Multiple Computers as much, as my current setup doesn't call for that. Still, it's good information to have around should you need it at a later time.

I actually found a couple different things occurring as I read through the material. There were hacks where some software was presented that did a certain task, and I'd realize I've been looking for something just like that. Similar to scratching an itch that you couldn't quite reach. Then there were the hacks that opened your eyes to whole areas you didn't even know you needed. Let's call that finding AND scratching the itch you didn't know you had five minutes prior. After going through some of the Automate Repetitive Tasks hacks, I have started to look at a lot of things I do with a view towards eliminating the manual repetitive effort that I just accepted as necessary before.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who spends most of their waking hours in front of a computer, and/or earn their living in front of one. Taking away even a small handful of nuggets can radically change the way you do things.
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for those wanting to be a bit more efficient 28 May 2008
By Jerry Saperstein - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is a collection of hints, tips and hacks for the technologically inclined. Areas covered are email, organizing your data, tricks to overcome your procrastination, clearing your mind, focusing your attention, streamlining common tasks, mastering the web, honing your computer survival skills and managing multiple computers.

Not at all ironically, the people for whom this book will be most useful - real geeks - will already know some, not all, of these things. I am most definitely a geek, but I did learn many new things and happy for that.

In some ways, the book will a half-loaf for many. There's a lot of Macintosh stuff that will not be helpful to Windows users and vice-versa. There's Windows Vista material that will not be useful to those (most of us, perhaps?) who are sticking with Windows XP. But this is not a major problem: the book has so much good stuff in it, that there is plenty for everyone.

Trapani's writing style is wonderfully clear, direct and concise.

Overall, other than calling it useful, versatile, eclectic and well-done, this book is difficult to classify. It merges real life (remembering to pick up the milk) with the technical (setting up a VPN) and lots, lots more. It is definitely a fun book to browse, packed with lots of great information.

A very worthwhile addition to your library.

Jerry
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Great Book of Common Sense Tips for Nerds Like Me 17 May 2009
By Monalia Ventress - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I read through this book over the course of a few days and highlighted everything that pertains to my workflow.
I have turned these into a task list and I am trying to implement one of them every other day or so.

The chapter on simply buying a good quality filing cabinet has made life immeasurably better already :-)

I'm using Text Expander to save time on timing out often used phrases.

I'm integrating google apps to take my work into 'the cloud'.

The tips on how to handle your email inbox are great.

This book is well written and easy to understand with lots of great tips that you can quickly implement to make you workday a little easier to get through and a lot more organized.

The split between PC and Mac tips is pretty balanced so no need to worry that your platform is being left out here.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even better than the website 24 Oct 2009
By Oliver Kozak - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book is about what Gina told in an [...] blog, the three things she would teach in a Lifehacker MBA course would be:
- how to install a personal organization system,
- how automate repetitive tasks,
- how to firewall your attention.

Tips in the book are on the Lifehacker website; however, it is much easier to digest. I have read the book while travelling, identified the hacks I wanted to implement, and made a small to do list from the Table of Contents. Then, back at my PC, I just implemented those I felt interesting.

There are tips for life in general (i.e. without computer), and there are many tips to improve on computer usage. Differences for Windows and Macintosh are highlighted. The book is very practical and easy to understand, which doesn't mean it is light on content. There are easy to do hacks, but there are hacks for the very advanced computer user, too.

Among all hacks, the most important to me is that I have completely changed how I deal with e-mail. I have implemented the Search style instead of Organizing in folders style, and changed how I respond to e-mails. Before e-mailing was time consuming and energy intensive, now it is quick and fun.

Some of the tips I have implemented became daily routine to me in such a way, that I only realize reading the book that they come from this book.

Finally, there is just some great fun about reading about a nice hack, even without implementing, it makes me think more creatively.
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