Web Research

5 Apps to Improve Web Research Efficiency

Doing research has become an integral part of daily life, not just for students and academics, but also for all professionals. Nowadays, the Web is packed with content, and is a main platform for retrieving information and sharing knowledge. Whether you are preparing for an essay or collecting the latest industry news for your next project, there are many tools to help you research efficiently online. Here are our 5 favorite apps!

Logomark_DIGITAL_Red_250X250-px Flipboard – Explore News Everyday 

Flipboard is your source for the latest news on your area of interest- from photography to technology, art to travel, food to music, and many more. You can create your own personalized daily magazine consisting of the news on your interested topics. It is a good channel for sharing information with your team, as well as collecting research results from them for a project.

Flipboard

pdf_cloud_icon PDF Markup – Highlight What Matters

Sometimes we are overloaded by page after page of material and just need some tools to help select the most important parts. PDF Markup offers exactly this.You can highlight PDF files and the most important web pages via the built-in browser (see how here) as part of your research. Add annotations whilst reading and view them whenever and wherever you like. When you want to just focus on the highlighted sections and your annotations, there is a summary page where you can quickly view the information.

PDF Markup web highlight
Web Highlight with PDF Markup

This app supports the idea of collaboration between people, thus offers a platform for sharing PDFs. You might be able to find other relevant information that PDF Markup users have highlighted in their PDFs by exploring their files in the My Markups community. You can also share your own insights there.

With the feature for adding web reference to your PDF file (see how here), you can easily find the citation of the extracted information.

NoteLedge NoteLedge – Clip Web Contents and Create Multimedia Note

Research doesn’t have to be boring after all. Information can be presented in the form of text, videos or audio clips. NoteLedge provides the ideal platform for you to gather all information together on one page. You can drag and drop online information, sound clips and videos from YouTube, Vimeo, TED Talks, National Geography, etc. onto your idea board and review them anytime. It is very useful when you want to put together a specific collection of tutorials from various online courses.

NoteLedge web Clipper
Drag and drop images, texts, and videos from web pages into notes.

Tracking the source of particular information has also been made easy. NoteLedge keeps track of the references so you can jump back to the original web source instantly and share this with anyone.

Pocket_AppIcon_iOS POCKET – SAVE FOR LATER

When you come across something interesting on the Web but don’t have time for it right away, you can save it to Pocket and come back to it later. The app is integrated with many news apps, web browsers, Facebook, Twitter and many more. The saved items will be synced across devices as well, so you can read or watch it anytime, even offline.

Pocket

Rescue Time RESCUETIME – MANAGE TIME SPENT ON WEB BROWSING 

Researching can often take a lot of time, especially when you are really into the topic and want to find out more and more. But as a result, you spend too much time researching! Sounds familiar, right? RescueTime helps keep track of your browsing behavior and time spent on each web page, including the time spent procrastinating on other sites. This way you can better manage your time and reduce distractions, thus boosting your productivity.  

Rescue Time

These are our favorite tools to keep us focused on our research tasks and assist us in researching efficiently and effectively. How about you? What tools and apps do you enjoy using? When you carry out research, what are the most challenging things you encounter?

We would love to know more about your experience and recommendations. Share this with us in the comment section below!


Also published on Medium.

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About the author

Charmaine Cheung

As a graduate in languages from the University of Bristol, England, Charmaine is currently working in Hong Kong, specialised in marketing and corporate communications. She has a strong international background, is fluent in English, Chinese and German, and has lived and work in the UK, Germany, Taiwan and Hong Kong.

She has been doing some projects and blogging for Kdan Mobile since 2015.

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