August 8th, 2013
Matt Gemmell on “Working in the Shed“:
We live in an age of ubiquitous information and communication, so distractions have never been more pervasive. We have too many choices of what to look at or focus attention on. The internet is a glittering carnival of diversions, and that’s wonderful – until you need to get some work done.
So what does he do to help? Work on an eMate, of course.
A great read on distraction-free productivity using classic hardware.
[via Minimal Mac, photo courtesy Matt Gemmell on Flickr]
July 10th, 2012
Nitro, a simple task management/todo list app for Linux with Dropbox or Ubuntu One sync.
It also comes in the form of a Chrome extension (with a Firefox version due once the Mozilla Marketplace opens for business).
Seriously, after using Todoist for a few months, I switched full-bore today to Nitro
On the surface, it looks and behaves like Things for Mac: projects, drag-and-drop to-do items, automatically-generated Next Steps – lots of good GTD stuff that Todoist never gave me.
I’m using the Chrome version at work on Windows. It gives me just the right amount of flexibility and agility to get all my stuff in order. Visually, it’s just what I was looking for.
The Chrome extension is a free install, but I loved it right away and chipped in a few bucks. They give you the full functionality of the app right from the get-go – something Todoist never did. I think that’s worth rewarding.
And the Dropbox syncing is something I’m going to try, especially on the go for work stuff.
September 1st, 2010
The idea behind One Thing Today (or the Touch version, above) is great: focus on completing one task every day. You get that done, you feel successful.
I’ve operated this way for years. “Tonight I’ll do the dishes, and tomorrow is my writing night, and Thursday I’ve got laundry to do.” As long as I do something productive each night, I don’t feel like a loser.
So Line Thirteen does an app for the Mac and an iOS app that puts all that in software form, where each day has some task and only one task. And as much as the app seems worth it for $9 (Mac) or $0.99 (iOS), it seems like you could set up a free version with iCal or a text file. Here’s an iCal version:
Here’s a text file in Notational Velocity that will sync to Simplenote on my iPhone:
If this is the way you think, there’s no reason you can’t make your own system. The benefit of One Thing Today is automatic scheduling and maybe a nicer interface – and I do think it’s neat that someone thinks the way I do and went ahead and made an app.
However, if I can do it myself with the tools at hand – especially sync-ability with NV and SimpleNote – why not give it a try?
May 17th, 2010
Throw an MP2100 in there and your set to go.
[Via Draplin Design, via FFFFOUND!]
October 19th, 2009
Take the iPhone form factor, marry it to the Newton’s stellar handwriting recognition, and you have the latest in PDA technology.
Above is a Notepod – a simple notepad shaped like an iPhone. For $18, you get three pocket-perfect notepads shipped from Australia. On the outside, you get a blank iPod Touch-like page, while the inside pages have grid-style paper for notes, doodles, or iPhone app ideas.
Maybe best of all, it recognizes your handwriting no matter how drunk you get – even if you don’t.
Or you can simply make your own with the Hipster PDA templates over at Active Voice. Whichever.
Via DIY Planner.
September 14th, 2009
For probably one of the most fascinating explorations of every day uses for your Newton, visit the conversation kicked off by Chris C. at the NewtonTalk list (hit the “Next in thread” link to go from e-mail to e-mail), called “A Day in the life of…”
For a down-and-dirty view, see Don Zahniser’s story. He talks about running a small farm and using Dateman (for to-dos), Notes (grocery lists and garden yields), Works, and more.
Morgan Aldridge has a good breakdown, too, showing which apps he uses throughout the day – everything from PocketMoney to Bills To Pay.
The entire thread is great for discovering apps you’ve never tried out, and practical uses for them in day-to-day life. I found a few I want to try. Browse around the United Network of Newton Archives (UNNA.org) to download some of the apps.
Back when I used my Newton for personal information management (PIM) and notes management, I stuck to the basics like Notes, Dates, To-Dos, and a few games here and there. That’s what is nice about the Newton: you can pick it up and use it as-is.
June 8th, 2009
Author Peter Straub at his workspace, using either a G5 or Intel iMac.
The Where I Write project has a bunch of great sci-fi author photos taken in their workspace by photographer Kyle Cassidy. I always find it fascinating to see where other people do their creative work. How many Macs can you spot?
[Courtesy of Neil Gaiman.]
March 30th, 2009
Riccardo Mori over at System Folder:
When your main system is capable of keeping multiple applications open, it’s easy to be distracted by incoming emails and updated RSS feeds. Not to mention the temptation to search the Web by following the spur of the moment — when that happens, the best case scenario is that I find myself two hours later digesting a lot of information I found following link after link, yet without doing anything really productive.
His solution? Write on a Mac Color Classic, or a Newton eMate 300 when away from home, to cut down on distractions.
“No browsers, no emails, no distractions: just me, my ideas, and the word processor,” Mori says.
It’s a brilliant (and, in a recession, cost-effective) solution to a problem a lot of us face every day. Why be productive when there’s another blog post to read? I’m working on my own, similar setup with my eMate 300.
Nice to see that Mori is getting something done on perfectly capable hardware.
February 18th, 2009
Just a heads up: Eckhart Köppen posted a wiki on his site, 40hz, that describes the 2010 Newton problem and some possible solutions. He also posted a wiki on patching the Newton.
Köppen is a Newton developer as well, and has posted some thoughts on how to do GTD on the Newton.
The good news is there are really smart people working on the Year 2010 issue, and Köppen seems to think getting a patch up and running will require “less black magic than anticipated,” as he told the Newtontalk list.
February 4th, 2009
Shawn Blanc, in his review of the Mac and iPhone versions of Things:
I don’t think the new spins on productivity software are because we have yet to witness the creation of the Ultimate App and Workflow. These unique and diverse apps are being written because people are unique and diverse.
Each of us has our own way of dealing with responsibility and our own expression of productivity. Tinkering and then switching is usually not the fault of the software. We’re not looking the best app, but rather the best app for us.
I use the desktop version of Things, and have since the 0.8 beta version, and I love it. I haven’t purchased the iPhone version yet, however, but plan to in the near future. Of all the things that are most Newton-like about the iPhone, it’s Thing’s sync-ability between the iPhone and Mac apps that most excites me.
Since Apple can’t get off its dead ass and provide iCal to-do syncing, leave it to third parties to fill the gap.
And Shawn is right: I’ve tried a few to-do apps, and none have really caught on. Things caught on, and I think it’s because it gloms onto whatever your style is. Hardcore GTDer? Scatterbrained lightweight? Things is for both of you.
[Via Daring Fireball]