Before the dawn of the digital age, many creatives were living in the shadows of their uncreative jobs, unable to find an outlet for their creativity. The web has changed that, giving creatives the tools needed to make things. Once creatives began to realize that simple fact, the influx began.
And no sooner had the creatives come than the first wave of producitivity-enhancing apps began to flood app stores everywhere. Some are really good at what they do (Focus@will comes to mind), but it's becoming increasingly difficult to find those gems amongst a sea of mediocrity.
So I was skeptical when I first encountered Coffivity, a productivity app that plays an endless loop of sound that mimics what you'd hear in your local coffee shop.
Research shows it's pretty hard to be creative in a quiet space. And a loud workplace can be frustrating and distracting. But, the mix of calm and commotion in an environment like a coffee house is proven to be just what you need to get those creative juices flowing.
Then I tried it, and much to my surprise, I found it quite calming, and yes, it did seem to help my productivity. The reasoning befuddles me, frankly- maybe it's the fact that I work from home, alone, and the app creates the pleasant illusion of being surrounded by people.
Whatever the deep-seated psychological reasons that lie just beyond my grasp, Coffivity is a nice change of pace from the classical and folk music that so often accompanies my writing. Coffivity comes in a few forms: a web and Android app, and two desktop apps for Mac (one full-fledged, one menu bar app).
I don't know how it works, and I'm sure mileage will vary, but Coffivity is a great app for any knowledge worker to keep handy, if for nothing else than for an occasional change of pace.