Wednesday, June 19Royal Holloway's offical student publication, est. 1986

Five Apps that are More Productive than Binging Netflix

Netflix is the procrastination tool of choice for many of us and it’s not hard to see why. A seemingly endless supply of the world’s favourite TV shows is an appealing premise, but for those of you wondering how else to kill the boredom in a slightly more productive manner, here are the top picks.


1) Mapswipe

Mapswipe is one of those mindless but addictive tasks. Across the world, Medicine Sans Frontiers is looking to digitally map parts of the world which we currently haven’t. You simply help them along their way by telling them whether the tile you’re presented with has any structures, major roads or rivers on it. One day, if the area is struck by a crisis, your contribution to the mapping project will tell aid workers where human populations are, as well as what roads they can use to get there. It’s also floated as the ‘tinder of the mapping world’ if that convinces you at all.


2) Listen to a Podcast

Audio media has made quite the comeback. The podcast app on the apple store or Pocket Cast for android are solid choices. Current favourites include Kicking the Kyriarchy – a podcast picked up by the Guardian and founded by Royal Holloway Alumnus Elena Guthrie and Sidonie Bertrand-Shelton about intersectional feminism and the interwoven nature of oppression. Other favourites include Ingrid Nilsen’s Ladies Who Lunch and Guys We F***cked produced by Corinne Fisher & Krystyna Hutchinson – both also intersectional and about liberation.


3) Earthmiles

This app measures your steps and gives you rewards for walking and keeping fit through syncing with whatever tracker is your mode of choice for fitness. The rewards can include discounts on gym classes, cool health food and active wear. It gives you the perfect motivation to head on over to Virginia Water and Windsor park to experience the local beauty that this side of Surrey has to offer.


4) Trivia Crack

Trivia Crack, I am convinced, is the perfect game to play with your flatmates. Download the app and get tested on fun and pretty useless general knowledge to climb up the scoreboards between you and your friends. It’s a fun way to hang out with your flatmates without having to have alcohol involved and you can play whilst in separate rooms – ideal for a lazy Sunday morning.


5) Origami

I was recently introduced to the app ‘Origami’, which holds around fifty tutorials for a wide and very fun range of origami projects. Considering you usually just need a single piece of paper and some focus, it’s a good way to unwind, especially if you are someone who needs to have their hands full at all times. It’s also a cheap and easy way of decorating your halls.