Website speed reductions may be too small to view, but you know it happens. Here's how to get actionable details on website speed with curl.
Personally I'm old school. I would do a packet capture and eyeball out the number I need. Both of the things I have mentioned would break out all of the aspects of your network interaction with some remote server. Not sure what is happening in your case but good luck.
Well, I thank everyone for their help but at the point I am feeling that this is beyond my abilities. I am going to take another approach. I am going to run a clone and then do a system reinstall while trying to reinstall some of the apps and see if they still open slow. Then I will just reinstall the system and see if it runs better. If so, I will just restore my home backup and everything should be ok. All I know is that this slow app startup issue wasn't always there.
I'll let you know.