Top 100 Tools for Learning in 2013

2013 is rapidly approaching and if you’re like the rest of the OpenSesame community, you’re busy evaluating your successes in 2012 and thinking about ways to be more effective in 2013.

You don’t have to go it alone. Online tools will help you find collaborators, stay organized, build community and get creative in the new year. We’ve scoured the web for the top 100 tools available to help you do what you dream in 2013. Also check out our updated list, “Top 100 Tools for Learning in 2014.”

Do you want to…

…get smarter?

  1. Quora – You ask, the net discusses – with top experts and fascinating back and forth on everything from technology to education.
  2. Youtube EDU – The education videos don’t have cute cats in boxes – but they do unlock knowledge.
  3. Personal MBA – An alternative to an expensive three year program.
  4. Khan Academy – Free elearning in math, science, finance and more. Simple explanations of complicated things.
  5. iTunes U – Learning on the go, from some of the world’s top universities.
  6. Reddit – The best (and worst) of the internet, with upvotes and downvotes.
  7. TED – Not the Seth McFarlane movie, but the annual conference of innovative thinkers. Great videos to open your mind.
  8. OpenSesame – Online marketplace for online training, now with 5,000+ courses for the iPad.
  9. Academic Earth – Get a Stanford education in your pajamas.
  10. Codecademy – This mind-blowing app teaches you to become the next Mark Zuckerburg, free.

… get organized?

  1. Evernote – Evernote, how we love thee – how can we count the ways? This online trapper-keeper organizes everything and syncs across all your devices.
  2. Pulse – News and blogs presented beautifully for your mobile device.
  3. Trello – Project progress visualized, shared and organized.
  4. LastPass – No more remembering passwords. Let this online vault and browser extension keep your content secure.
  5. Clear – The most beautiful to-do list you’ve ever seen – clean and easy to use.
  6. Action Method – When your projects seem overwhelming, let Action Method help you break tasks into actionable steps.
  7. TurboScan – Make 2013 the year you go paper free, for real, by scanning all your documents.
  8. Diigo – Online information management for the highlighter and sticky note type.
  9. Popplet – Colorful mind mapping tool for getting all your concepts in order.
  10. Padlet – Web-wall for your to do lists – or just your virtual Justin Bieber posters.

… build your personal learning network?

  1. Twitter – What would we do without it? Not on Twitter yet? Get started with our free course.
  2. Skype – Video or audio calls, free, to anyone, anywhere.
  3. LinkedIn – Facebook for careerists, with better conversation.
  4. Tribe – Find the message board for you.
  5. Delphi Forums – If you can’t find one, start your own message board.
  6. BranchOut – Play ‘connect-the-dots’ with your social network to visualize your network and make new connections.
  7. SunZu – A network for people doing business that lets you meet, share, learn, trade and grow with other business owners.
  8. Google+ Hangouts – The best multi-person video call platform. Still free!
  9. Facebook Groups – A great way to create public or private groups – especially since you know everyone you want to include is already using Facebook!
  10. Ning – Don’t like Facebook? Not into Twitter? Use this platform to build your own social network, and invite only your audience.

… create compelling content?

  1. Screenr – Instant screencasts made easy with this free audio + screen capture app.
  2. Adobe Color CC– Develop beautiful (not distracting) color schemes for your next content project.
  3. Crazy Egg – Understand how your audience experiences your content with this inexpensive heatmapping tool.
  4. User Testing – Find out why users leave your site by hearing a randomly selected tester narrate their experience.
  5. Prezi – Presentations to make your friends jealous, with zooming, highlighting and concept mapping.
  6. Vimeo – More beautiful video hosting.
  7. Animoto – This is a fast and easy way to create video like the pros.
  8. Common Craft – Hire the experts to help you make content that breaks complex topics into their simplest parts.
  9. Aviary – Embed this simple photo editing tool into your web app or website – and crop and retouch photos to your heart’s delight.
  10. Dribbble – Give and receive feedback on your recent projects.

… collaborate more?

  1. HipChat – Flexible group chat tool that makes meetings obsolete.
  2. Google Drive – Formerly Google Docs – forget your file cabinet, your My Documents folder and email attachments. Make sure all your docs live in the cloud – and share them with whom you want, when you want.
  3. Yammer – This Facebook for business tool helps you share information with your colleagues without filling up your inbox.
  4. FaceTime – Face-to-virtual-face calling from Apple makes it easy to connect with your colleague in Des Moines.
  5. AIM – An old standby for instant messaging.
  6. Dropbox – File storage and sharing that just works.
  7. – Need to share your screen in real time? Want to get a call-in number that works for phone callers or VOIP? does it all.
  8. TodaysMeet – Create a private feedback room for your next presentation.
  9. Eventbrite – Great online tool to create events and sell tickets.
  10. Asana – The best collaboration and project management tool we know of – from the co-founder of Facebook.

… outsource busy work (or pick up someone else’s)?

  1. TaskRabbit – Virtual marketplace for outsourcing your errands. Get someone to pick up your dry cleaning, clean your house or take your dog to the vet.
  2. Fiverr – Get  your tasks accomplished, starting at $5.
  3. Craigslist – Buy and sell services and stuff. Meet collaborators.
  4. Freelancer – Advertise your freelance services. Find gigs and earn $.
  5. TimeSvr – Need administrative tasks accomplished? Here’s your web-based personal assistant.
  6. Elance – Hire freelance workers and pay only for results.
  7. Gigwalk – Be 100 places at once with a mobile workforce. You can say you have boots on the ground everywhere – because you do.
  8. oDesk – Find talent around the world, from web design to copywriting and everything in between.
  9. GetFriday – Do what you love, while GetFriday does the rest.
  10. Guru – Integrate freelancer hiring with project management tools to outsource even more of your work.

… unleash your superhero health?

  1. Fitbit – The self, quantified with one little gadget to help you eat, sleep, and live better.
  2. HealtheHuman – Track your health from one dashboard to help you reach your fitness and wellness goals.
  3. Lumosity – Fun brain games to pump up your mental capacity.
  4. RunKeeper – Easy workout tracking, goal-setting and connecting with like-minded active people.
  5. Livestrong – Best free calorie counter on the web to help you track what you eat and ultimately eat better.
  6. Quantified Mind – Hack your brain, get smarter.
  7. WebMD Pain Coach – WebMD on the go for answering tough questions quickly.
  8. The Eatery – Too lazy to calculate your own calorie counts? Take a picture of your lunch and these folks will estimate for you.
  9. Breathe2Relax – Take deeeeep breaths with this relaxation and stress management tool.
  10. Sleep Cycle – This app helps you wake up when your body is ready.

… meet cool people?

  1. Meetup – Find people doing fun things near you – make professional connections and meet new friends.
  2. Speeksy – Meet new people based on shared Facebook interests.
  3. Townhang – Do more with your leisure time, locally.
  4. Grouper – You bring 2 friends, they bring 2 friends – you all meet new people.
  5. Airtime – SFW ChatRoulette.
  6. Badoo – Expand your local networks.
  7. Runfaces – It’s like Speeksy meets ChatRoulette.
  8. Xing – Expand your professional network.
  9. Big Tent – Organize your group activities with free tools.
  10. Bebo – The social networking site that has everything.

… learn a new language (or three)?

  1. Pleco – Essential tool for Chinese scholars.
  2. Memrise – Scientifically proven to be fun enough that you learn something.
  3. Busuu – Learn and practice a language with a supportive community.
  4. Lang-8 – Let native speakers correct your writing.
  5. Palabea – Learn another language with courses and video chat.
  6. LingQ – Rapidly grow your vocabulary.
  7. Babbel – Flashcard learning, with a helpful twist.
  8. Lingro – Incredible dynamic dictionary.
  9. Livemocha – Learn a language, teach a language, explore the world from your laptop.
  10. Mango Languages – Language learning with cultural insight.

… travel the world?

  1. ITA Matrix – Find the best flight deals.
  2. Kayak Explore – $70 in your pocket? You might have a flight.
  3. Seatguru – Never book another bad seat – get great maps of every plane you’ll ever enter.
  4. Oyster – What does that 2 star motel actually look like?
  5. HipMunk – Find the flights that fit your schedule.
  6. ExpertFlyer – All the info you need to make intelligent booking decisions and make the most of your travel.
  7. VirtualTourist – Hear what the locals are saying about your next destination.
  8. Findery – Leave and find notes in the places you love.
  9. Tingo – Collect the difference if your hotel price drops.
  10. Autoslash – Get good deals on rental cars without the hassle

With the 100 tools listed above, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to put at least one of them to good use. If you’re already using any of the tools listed above, let us know whether you think its been helpful in the comments.

Of course, if we missed your favorite online tool, be sure to let us know that as well – we’ll release an updated list next year.