Ten Tech tools I am using Today in Youth Ministry…

I often get asked about tech tools that I use. Here are ten of the big ones.

1. Dropbox (Sign up here I and I get more free space. Woohoo!!..) – its a hard one to beat. I am not tied to a specific machine, and It moves to files I need to multiple machines for me.

2. SugarSync. Yes this may seem redundant, but its not. There is one feature I use in SugarSync that makes it a “must-have”. The auto-sync of photos in the Android app is like the photostream in iCloud, but more easily accessible…

3. Hootsuite. It is a great tool for planning and scheduling the content you share, and managing the online interactions you have.

4. Chrome to Phone (Android App) (Chrome Extension) . I can send Web links directly to my phone to read later (like for example in the waiting room at the mechanic shop) when I have time. Quick set up and very seamless when active. It is even available for Android 4.x…

5. Google Chrome. What would it be like to have the same bdowser interface, bookmarks. And extensions, no matter which of your machines (Mac or PC ) you were using? Yes. Its like that.

6. Gimp. Gimp is a free open source image editor that allows you to open and edit most graphic file formats out there. It has about 80% of the tools that Adobe Photoshop has, but for free.

7. Teamviewer. Teamviewer is a great piece of software that makes remote access a breeze. Free for personal use too. what a nice bonus feature…

8. Plantronics Voyager 835 Bluetooth Headset. No I am not “Mr walks around everywhere with his headset on to look important”. I am “Mr tries to keep safe on the road”. I use my headset while on trips to return phone calls and answer calls safely. Don’t let the MSRP of $119.95 scare you. I purchased both mine and my wife’s headsets for less than $20 each on eBay new in “white box packaging”…Shop around.

9. Vlingo / Samsung Voice Talk. This software allows #8 to happen much more safely. Voice talk is Samsung’s licensed version they use on their smartphones. A little more refined than the typical app store version (although it is now free instead of $19.99!)
UPDATE:  I have migrated to the “Assistant” App from a company called Speaktoit. You can get it here

10. Samsung Galaxy S II (Tmobile). HTC One S…We had a bit of a service issue that resulted in us leaving AT&T for another service provider. This resulted in me going back to T-Mobile during the “free smartphone” weekend a couple weeks ago. My choice was the Galaxy S II. At one point I had an ATT version of the original Galaxy S (Captivate), which was a nice unit, save for a few minor irritations. Those are gone, and the S II is a much improved unit. I will do a full review in the future, but this is one of the best smartphones I have had my hands on. It’s that good.

UPDATE:  While the Galaxy SII is a great unit that can be had at a great price (especially since the SIII/S3 is out),  I was blessed to have the SII replaced by an HTC One S due to a set of unforseen circumstances. You can read my thoughts about it here

 

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Brent Lacy

Youth Pastor. Web Designer. Homeschool Dad. Former Child Abuse Investigator. IT Technician. Writer. Lock-in Survivor. Rural Ministry Advocate. These all describe the experiences and stories that are part of Brent Lacy’s time in ministry. Brent grew up on 160 acres of corn, soybeans and cattle in Southern Illinois. He is currently a Rural Ministry Specialist with National Network of Youth Ministry (NNYM), based in Rockville, Indiana where he lives with his beautiful wife and three awesome kids in the Covered Bridge Capital of the World! His book "Rural Youth Ministry: Thrive Where You're Planted" is available at SimplyYouthMinistry.com and on the Kindle Store.

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