The student/productivity thread

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 3' started by Rugbyguy541, Jul 22, 2014.

  1. Rugbyguy541

    Rugbyguy541 Member

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    I was thinking it would be good to have a thread going sharing productivity/study/scholastic tips for getting the most of your Surface Pro 3. This is meant to share tips, and ask questions, this device has made my life so much easier, and I know there is still a lot more features I have yet to use. I work at a fire department fulltime, and am currently taking 16 credits, I'll share how the SP3 has made life easier for me.

    - OneNote 2013. This, from a student standpoint, is THE program, almost makes my entire purchase worth it for this one program. I know I have only scratched the surface on it's abilities too. I have all my text books in here split into sections, I have all my notes in here as well. I like how I can annotate everything, put it in dock mode and look stuff up online, then bring an image straight into my notes. It organizes everything very well and I can search through everything. Yes there are things to be desired, but it does a pretty darn good job over all.

    - Drawboard PDF. This is THE PDF app. Yes it costs you $10, but it is so worth it. I can annotate right on it. I can highlight chunks of text, instead of just a freehand highlight. It has the options wheel which is very conducive to using the pen and accessing tools quickly. Does a great job of organizing my PDF's within the app so I just have to launch it, and I can see all my PDF's from within it. I believe it has a free trial so give it a go. Also the developers are amazing. Any time I have had an issue and email them, I hear back in a few hours, even at 7pm on a Sunday.

    - My Study Life. Great app! I have all my classes, assignments and tests in there. Reminds me what is coming up, what needs to get done, and when everything is due. It really helps me stay organized, and has apps for all platforms, so you can have it on your phone, other tablets, what ever else you use.

    - Flashcards Pro. This is an amazing app. You can create your own flashcards, or search through tons and tons and tons of flashcards others made. I have yet to find flashcards it doesn't already have. Great way to take a "study break", throw on netflix and do some light reviewing.

    - Khan Academy. I'm sure Khan Academy itself needs to introduction. The app for windows is fantastic, and since it is an app, I can snap it next to my OneNote 2013 and take notes on the lectures. Very well designed, and you can actually download the videos to be viewed offline.

    Tips:

    - Battery Life: Be sure you have all notifications turned off. I don't need this to tell me a new thing has happened or whatever, it just eats up battery by trying to ping alot. I noticed a decent increase in battery just by turning off notifications. Keep your screen to 35%, and open task manager and kill off all non-essential programs (skype is a big perpetrator, and if you normally use chrome, there will still be background processes running)

    - Use IE 11: I personally hate IE, but chrome is a battery killer. If I need my SP3 to last 7 hours, I use IE 11. There are already alot of articles out there proving chrome is a battery killer, so if you are really curious, feel free to google around for them.

    - So this is something I like to do for studying, and I love it. I get on youtube and find a lecture or video pertaining to what I am studying, chromecast it to my TV from my SP3 and then have OneNote open and can take notes on it. I can start and stop the video as I want. Sometimes for a specifically confusing section, I'll insert the link/time of the video into my notes, so when I am studying it in the future, I can open that for explanation.



    That is all I can think of for now, but as I think of more, or get good suggestions, I'll update the OP with them. So let's hear it, what all do you guys do to utilize your SP3 to increase your work productivity, or studying?
     
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  2. JesseDiaz

    JesseDiaz Member

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    Great info.....
    for notifications, how do you totally turn those off and would this be for programs that are running in the background like OUTLOOK?
     
  3. Rugbyguy541

    Rugbyguy541 Member

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    Swipe from the right to bring up the charms, right click notifications, turn off. You can also do it in your settings if that doesnt work (I just did it through settings)
     
  4. JesseDiaz

    JesseDiaz Member

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    Hmm...I only have the option to hide for 1, 4 or 8 hours
     
  5. Rugbyguy541

    Rugbyguy541 Member

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    Then go into your settings>change pc settings>search and apps>notifications
     
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  6. JesseDiaz

    JesseDiaz Member

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    Thanks
     
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  7. ipaq_101

    ipaq_101 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks for this thread, I start business school in October and this has many great tips. I am going to look in to the pdf app you suggested.
     
  8. Odyssey

    Odyssey Member

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    If you don't use it already, Outlook is an excellent app for organizing your schedule for the semester. I enter my exam schedule in the calendar, my daily and weekly task list under Tasks, and sync my email accounts all within ONE program. This and OneNote make the Surface the ultimate student-oriented tool.
     
  9. Contact

    Contact New Member

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    Great idea and write up. Do you think that programs like dropbox and OneDrive eat up battery? If so, what do you do about it to get that 7 hour battery life?
    For those in academia, there's a windows application that organizes a research paper library for you called ReadCube (I have no affiliation with this company). You can read and annotate right in the program and it'll even manage references and suggest other articles on Google scholar and PubMed. Worth taking a look if you have folders full of papers.
     
  10. daonei

    daonei New Member

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    Hey everyone,

    I also recommend a program called PDF Annotator. Before Drawboard, this was my go-to program to edit PDFs. As a graduate student, I literally read hundreds of articles a year. PDF Annotator and Drawboard has helped me to stop printing everything.

    I love Drawboard because you're able to use the pen to annotate and fingers to scroll. The only downside is it's a relatively new program and there are a lot of kinks and features missing that are available on PDF Annotator (like selecting to copy and paste from PDFs).

    Also, I tried out a bunch of email clients, but ultimately landed on eM Client and haven't looked back. They have a very simple and intuitive UI and most emails work perfectly. I was having issues with my university email with Outlook, and this has worked wonders for me.
     
  11. Rugbyguy541

    Rugbyguy541 Member

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    Since people here use PDF's alot, and school, maybe I could get some not SP3 specific help. I just got accepted into my paramedic program, and those books are a bit more obscure. I am 100% ok and am going to buy the books print, for future referencing and refreshing, but they all also come with ebooks. How can I turn my ebooks into straight up PDF's so I can put them in drawboard & onenote? I was able to find the PDF of my current A&P book pretty easily, but so far, nothing for my medic books.
     
  12. Matt

    Matt Member

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    I'm not 100% but I think you can use Calibre to convert eBooks to PDF. I know it certainly allows you to do the reverse and create an eBook from a PDF. Might be worth a look
     

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