I'll discuss that in a minute, but first I have to tell you that I download Nik Radio and listen to it every week. The program "delivers a variety of educational programming created to inspire digital photographers of all levels." You can find it on itunes, free. You can't beat that.
The filters in Color Efex Pro 3.0 are great. I use at least 2 or 3 of them on every image and more when I'm experimenting. Tonal contrast touches them all. Vivesa 2 allows me to point, click and slide to make adjustments without the need to make complicated selections. Silver Efex Pro creates professional black and white images using presets and sliders. Sharpener Pro 3.0 uses the same u-point technology as all the other programs to take the guess work out of sharpening individual areas.
U-point technology is great. All it means is that "you point", click and drag to make local adjustments. I suggest that you check out the different products and download the free trials. Let me know what you think.