The last couple of weeks saw a slew of apps updates and launches, which are going to be summarised in this fortnight’s column. I’ve chosen to write about four – two of which are new entrants (sort of), while one other is a useful update for an app I’ve already covered and one talks about a Twitter cofounder’s little-known Q&A service.

Jelly

Jelly comes from Biz Stone, who cofounded Twitter with Jack Dorsey. This app is a rarefaction of your social networks where the drivers of conversations are questions. Install it for free on your Android or iOS devices, login with your existing social networks, invite others, and ask or answer questions. It’s really simple and useful in that it filters out everything except answers to your pressing questions.

What makes the app better is that it’s got a built-in pen tool for you to draw with, and use those pictures as part of your queries. You can also shoot pictures with your phone’s camera – let’s see you’ve seen a gorgeous building in the distance – and ask around for directions to get there. If somebody on your Jelly is unable to answer, you can forward questions (with their Jelly links) to people outside the app as well.

Evernote

Evernote was one of the first apps written about in the column when it started, and it’s been an enduring favourite among its users. The app lets you save bits and bytes of news items you’ve come across and want to remember later, or notes you take in the middle of the night, or that good joke you want to remember at lunch the next day. It’s available for free across a range of devices across all platforms, and because it collimates all your jottings in one place, you’ll never have to look elsewhere to inspire yourself.

A few days back, Evernote CEO Phil Libin announced in a blog post that its developers had improved the apps performance: It now syncs four times faster between different devices, boasts reduced downtime, and is generally faster and better to use. What are you waiting for?

Scribd

This is an ebook subscription service that originally started off as a platform to share documents on. After the launch of Oyster – another ebook subscription service geared at iOS devices – a few months ago, Scribd is likely to be a strong contender. If you own a Kindle Fire, you’d like to know that Scribd is a richer alternative to Amazon’s built-in store.

Inside

In an era when journalism often takes the unfortunate backseat for breaking news against the social media, Inside is a curious phenomenon. It is an app for you to read news on, but the difference is that the most bits of information are not brought in by algorithms but by actual people who are taking the time to sift through the river of news to find factually correct bits of interestingness.The app is currently available for free for iOS and Blackberry devices, with an Android app in the offing according to its CEO.

Miscellaneous

Have you checked out Facebook Paper yet?