Your digital apparatus
We interact everyday with computer through our hands. Shifting through our files and data feels eerily similar to searching for a needle on a haystack.
Fortunately, we have a set of tools and tricks our sleeve against digital entropy, disorder and chaos. Here are some of mine.
I use Trello, where I have implemented GTD. Getting things done, or GTD, is a complete topic on its own, but here is my 1 minute breakdown.
- GTD is a productivity method
- You have a single
- Every idea, remainder, task, anything, goes in it
- The moment you annotate it on the list, forget about it
- You process
- if the thing it's not actionable
- if it's a reference, idea, or interesting data, save it in a retrievable place
- else, feel free to delete
- else if you have a task
- if less than 2 minutes, do it right now
- if it's a single task, put it in
- else if it's a multi step project, file in
- if it has to be done by somebody else, delegate and move to
- if it can not be done yet, set in on
Tickler Filewith the corresponding date when it becomes actionable.
- if the thing it's not actionable
All this is just lists on Trello. I also have a boring Gmail calendar with all my appointments.
Notes / Knowledge graph / Wiki
As I said, this post is not really about GTD, but from this description, we need somewhere to store those references.
There are many names to this. A personal database, a Knowdledge graph, a wiki, etc....
I wasn't really satisfied with anything available, and I consider this so important, that I have gone with a homebrew solution. It's my own "memex", think of it like a personal pinterest. It is important that the items here are easy to retrieve and are well organized. It's perpetually on development, for example I'm looking into fuzzy text search and support for long-form text posts.
It's based on the Memex project, check it out at https://github.com/kormyen/memex.
You only really have n-1 versions of your data, where n are the copies of your data.
So how do I manage my files and backups? I have two mechanisms for redundancy.
- A raspberry pi serving as a NAS with two HDD
- The second HDD rsyncs the first one daily
- A free google drive for important legal documents
My code is in gitlab repos, I haven't used GitHub for personal projects in years. Why? Well I have grown accustomed to its CI. And it has free unlimited private repos. I might self host code at some point.
I use Calibre to manage my Kindle library. It works flawlessly.
AudioBee is my weapon of choice here. I have made some mistakes with it, and the UI is not the most intuitive. But it works, after tinkering with it I can sync my music and playlist to my phone as well as play on my computer.
Playnite is a single catalog over Steam, Epic, Gog, itch, and even a few others. GOG is starting to pick up some of the slack here, but it doesn't have all the stores.
I use Eleventy for this and my memex page. I am happy with it, it seems to be just the right size, not too big, but opinionated enough, coupled with sane defaults and a vibrant echosystem.
astro.build looks interesting if I ever move into more dynamic websites, but for now eleventy will suffice.
Things I would like to have mechanisms for
I have very briefly used darktable for editing, but it might be useful for tagging and managing my personal photo library.
Trello used to have a very limited map feature, but now it seems capped behind the paid plan. And it was never that good. I would love to have some OSM integration in memex, but it is a very big task.
I try to keep most of my digital apparatus pragmatic: choose simpler tools, let it become bigger or smaller as time passes, needs will rise and fall.
I hope this has helped you in some way! See you around!