In Your Computers, Tracking Your Thoughts

September 18th, 2007 by

The most valuable thing I got out of Google this summer was getting in the habit of writing down what I'm doing on a regular basis. At the end of each day (or each week), writing down what you've done and what you're going to do next makes taking the next step that much easier. About a year ago I tried keeping monthly snippets after reading some motivational piece in Science, but a month is just long enough to get you out of the groove and to lose track of things. Writing more frequently takes the emphasis away from big, grand thoughts and turns it more into a source of reference material.

With that in mind, I decided to setup a system for myself tonight. The first choice was desktop, web, or paper. I chose web because it's searchable, is easy to backup and is available from anywhere. First I checked out Backpack, but decided that paying for something when you can do just as good for free was silly.

With it narrowed down to free, open-source CMS systems I decided to go with a blogging setup because a daily post, single user format works better that way than with a wiki. The two main contenders then were WordPress and MovableType. I've used WordPress in the past so I installed it and tried it out for a few minutes until I read about a sweet iPhone interface for MovableType. The upshot of WordPress is that Dreamhost has a one-click install for it, but the slick iPhone setup could not be contained. Installing MovableType took just a few minutes, and a little .htaccess magic made it nicely hidden away. We'll see how it goes.

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