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Brian Andrews

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About Brian Andrews

  1. Hey thanks for all those ideas. Is there a way to create an index quickly? Like highlight all the notes and create index? Yes there is. It works slightly different on the Mac version and the PC version, and I am not sure which you are using. But with either there are ways to select a whole bunch of notes, and copy all the links at the same time. That kind of extra step of adding the article to another thing every time after I clip it will get boring fast and I'll give up the system. I can definitely understand that. Sometimes one little extra step is enough to keep me from doing something all together Question: In the webclipper (as far as I can tell) there actually is not a tag browser, am I not seeing it? What I see you type the tag and it autofills. Haha….this is a bit crazy. Based on your comments, it sounds like you are using a Mac. I spend my day split between a Mac and a PC. I use the Mac as much as possible, but am forced to use the PC once in a while for work, and minimize its use as much as possible. So, I use EN cross-platform (that is a good reason for it, right?) and the implementation of features across those two platforms is crazy!!! But, I won’t get into that. On the Mac, I just use Safari, because it works and I like it. I have never tried the web clipper on chrome for Mac, but assumed it was like the PC version. Obviously not. Just tried it out, and it works just like you described. On the Chrome for PC web clipper, it has a visual note tree, instead of the auto fill thing. Sorry about the mis-information Whatever you come up with, please share it with us. It is very interesting!
  2. I too have struggled with wishing there was “one more level” in the notebook structure. I have come up with stuff that works for me. It may not work for you, but I also have some other ideas that I don’t personally use, but still might help you. 1) I started keeping my notebooks more “general” and if I felt if a note needed further organization, I put that information in the note title. It seems like it would get very confusing, but I know myself, and I am very consistent with the way I think. Also, once you create one or two notes, it is easy to remember what you did before. 2) Once I get enough notes all on the same topic, I make in index note, which of course has “Index” in the title. A quick search of “Index” and the topic I am looking for usually will get all the information I need quickly. 3) My note names all start with YYYYMMDD: then the title. Sorting by title is quicker than worrying about date created or date modified. I generally know what I am looking for based on semi-knowing a date when I created it. This system I have going is always evolving. I am liking it so far, but the more I use it, I may tweak it more. The goal is to continue to eliminate notebooks once I see how well (or not) that it works. Some other thoughts, is that you can set up nested tags, and create as many levels as you like, just like a dead tree structure 100 levels deep, if you want. Display “Tags” Instead of “Notebooks” on the left menu, and you kind of have what you want. Like a virtual directory structure. As far as remembering all those tags, when you are actually using EN, you can have them visible, and either use that as a guide, or drag and drop to the tags. To help with the web clipping issue, if you use the clipper in Chrome (which I ironically do not) it has a menu system where you can see all your tags and select them, so that you don’t have to remember them. I am not sure how well either of these will work, since I don’t actually do them myself, but it is stuff to think about.
  3. I think because Evernote was never intended to be a "task managment" system to organize tasks and integrate with calendars, etc. Many of us it for that (me included), which speaks to the power of the flexibility of Evernote. But, in the end, its primary function is to retain data, make it easy to organize and retrieve, and make it avaiable over many platforms. People are not crying out for functionality beyond that because it would like asking MS Powerpoint to send e-mail.....it was never meant to. B
  4. I recently started using TSW, and it is great, but there are also a couple things to consider. Prior to TSW, I was using EN for a storage system. To keep things to be looked up again in the future, to share things with my phone, etc. TSW is a way of using EN for a task management system and an overall time management system. With that in mind, there are 3 aspects of the TSW system. 1) Actions Pending Notebook 2) Completed Notebook and 3) Cabinet. Actions Pending and Completed are pretty self-explanatory. It is where you manage your to-do list. With the TSW structure, it is very neat because you can look across your task through various contexts, such as being @work, @home, or @homedepot. This is pretty cool to me because everything is still in one list. Previously, I would have a separate list for at home, at work, etc. They may have been all on the same page, but they were still segmented. For this, the TSW system just works great for me. Here is one thing I like about this system. I used to keep my “To-Do” list in a daily Journal. I still keep the journal for record keeping, but no longer keep to-do’s in it. I will get to that in a bit. With ANY method you choose, you pretty much have to have a few minutes of “planning” time per day. Whether it is a reminders list, another app, or a good old notebook. With my daily journal method, I had to pull to-do’s from my head, the uncompleted list from the previous day, stuff from my e-mail inbox, voicemails, and the scraps of paper in my pocket. People talk about TSW as being too much work. They see the tagging and prioritizing and viewing as complicated, but other method are work too! Just a different type of work. You have to capture stuff, or any method is not going to work. With my journal lists, daily planning actually took longer. Since my task list is long, and not likely to be completed in a day, I had a lot of management to do. My to-do list usually started with the one from the previous day. Completed tasks had to be removed, new ones added, multiple list based on context, and then as new tasks were added, changing priority was a nightmare. The only way to give a simple list priority is basically by order. So, I would be copy/pasting a lot to change the order. With TSW, completed stuff is just moved to completed during the day. A lot of time as new things pop into my head they are tagged and given priority as they are put in. If not, a new “daily planning” session would consist of tagging a couple things. No more copy/pasting, creating a new list. Same goes for actionable e-mails. In a matter of a minute or two, everything is organized, prioritized and ready to go. Super easy. The best part is ALL my email inboxes are empty. I had separate method for organizing my inbox, such as flagging emails that needed response, or keeping them unread, etc. Now, I don’t have two places where I have “stuff to do.” An empty inbox is a good feeling Now…..here is where the sticky point could happen. All the stuff I have talked about putting into Actions Pending or Completed folders are items that require action on your part. I see these as tasks, and other than knowing they are completed, they do not need to stay around for historical reasons. There is a whole lot of stuff I put into EN that does not require me to do anything. For example, I have the receipt for filling the propane at my cabin for last fall. I keep it to see how much I used, I much the total bill was, how much the propane was per unit, etc. But, I don’t have to DO anything. So, it goes in the cabinet, right? For me, I figured out a method that works. But, if you use a tagging system for organizing files like that I can see how thing could get hairy really fast. TSW has a decent amount of tags as it is. My set is allows me to view them all at one time in the sidebar, and is not overly complicated. If I added in a bunch to organize cabinet content also, I could see a tag list easily getting out of control. So, what I do is organize my cabinet with GrumpyMonkey’s dating and descriptive title method, not requiring additional tags. Tags for me are for task management using TSW, and this system if for historically documenting everything else. Daily journal (with meetings and log of events), receipts, web clippings, research, book notes, etc. My only exception to GM’s system is that I still have a few notebooks in my cabinet. I have not become comfortable enough yet to slim down to one or two notebooks. But, that is also the beauty of GM’s system…….it doesn’t matter. For right now, I feel comfortable having a bit more organization with a few notebooks. But, if I stick with the note dating and descriptive titles, I always have the option of being in the “All Notebook view” and treating things like I have one mass notebook. If in time, I feel comfortable and don’t feel I need the notebook structure I currently have, I can just keep moving notes to a broader and broader topic heading, knocking down the number of notebooks, and nothing really changes as long as I follow the system. Anyway, there is my long take on TSW Surprised if you made it this far!!! Brian
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