Three digital tools offer free trials

Scapple imageIf you’d like to give some new software a free whirl, here are three great opportunities.

Scapple for Windows

Literature and Latte, the maker of Scrivener, has released a beta version of a Windows program called Scapple.

Scapple is desktop software that is sort of a cross between a mind-mapping program and an idea board. It’s easy to use and ties into Scrivener, software that provides a structured environment for writing. Amy Cavender reviewed the Mac version of Scapple for ProfHacker earlier this year, and I agree with her positive assessment.

Scapple for Windows is free to download and use until Sept. 15 or until the company decides the software is ready to sell. The Mac version sells for $14.99, so presumably the Windows version will sell for the same price.

Evernote tie-ins

Evernote recently released a list of six finalists in its annual developer competition. The one I found most intriguing is Context Booster, a tool that promises to provide lists of related links to the notes you keep in Evernote.

Context Booster is in alpha testing, and you can sign up on the company’s website.

Among the other finalists are Lightly, an Evernote highlighter for iPhone;, an app that turns Evernote into a blog tool; and SmartTM, an iOS task manager that ties in to Evernote. You can buy those programs in the App Store.


Powtoon is an online tool that allows you to create cool animated videos. I’d suggest watching a demo to see what it can do.Powtoon

A classroom account for Powtoon usually costs $96 a year, but the company is offering educators a chance to sign up for free accounts for a year. Each account allows an instructor and 30 students to create videos on Powtoon.

You can sign up a class, a school or a department. The offer is good until Saturday, so you’ll have to move quickly.


About dbward

Doug Ward is an associate professor of journalism at the University of Kansas.
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