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Your System - Functions and Apps That Fulfill Them

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Posted by JakeBernsteinWA
Feb 6, 2019 at 12:01 AM


Courtesy of Graham from the “informal poll” thread on task managers:

> As for my setup: my diary and dated tasks are on paper (Filofax Heritage A5, for those interested), using inserts that I design and print myself (so that they exactly suit my way of working – another added efficiency bonus).
> My undated and repeating tasks are in a highly underrated program called Sciral Consistency. The knowledge I collect and disseminate is in ConnectedText, and project-related knowledge is split between The Brain (because I can easily synchronise that with other computers) and notebooks (the paper variety). My archive knowledge is in OneNote. I carry around an A7 notebook for any ideas of tasks I need to do whilst on the move. I have a whole host of other software I’d like to use (Everdo, Hyperplan, Goalscape…), but I need to get them to work in my way instead of vice versa, so they’re on the reserve bench.

What struck me about this paragraph was Graham’s delineation of the apps he uses and their function in his personal setup/system. This is something that all good CRIMPers use far too much time on, but I am curious.

What do you consider to be the essential functions of Your System and what apps do you use to fulfill each such function?

To get this started, I think of the following functions and associated apps as part of my system:

1. Brainstorming :: iThoughtsX or other mindmapping software
2. Random Notetaking :: Drafts (iOS and Mac beta)
3. Scheduling :: Calendars via Fantastical 2
4. Task Management :: Hybrid System consisting of a bullet journal plus OmniFocus 3
5. Thought Processing :: see Brainstorming OR something like Tinderbox
6. Knowledge Archive :: combination of DEVONthink Pro Office and something i haven’t settled on yet for raw text (possibly The Archive or Drafts for Mac or Ulysses or Day One…ah heck, I don’t know—this remains a struggle)
7. Project Knowledge :: DTPO or Tinderbox

In general, many of this can be hybridized to include paper notebook. For example, I’m working on hybridizing my journaling system to include my bullet journal and Day One (but see my problem with archival text knowledge).

So, who else wants to share their System like this?


Posted by Stephen Zeoli
Feb 6, 2019 at 04:26 PM


Interesting question. Because I work on a Windows PC at the office and a MacBook for my personal life, my response is a bit more complicated. I decided to use Airtable to answer. I also added a category of Database. If you’re interested, you should be able to view my table here:


Steve Z.


Posted by JakeBernsteinWA
Feb 6, 2019 at 07:20 PM


Thanks for sharing! I like that you added Database. I also use Airtable for that category.

Does anyone agree or disagree strongly (or even slightly) with the functions/app categories? I didn’t mean to set forth my personal opinion as the end-all-be-all, but if people like it, that makes me happy too!


Posted by nirans@gmail.com
Feb 6, 2019 at 07:27 PM


I like the categories. I specially like the differentiation between Knowledge versus project.


Posted by Jeffery Smith
Feb 6, 2019 at 09:37 PM


For the first time in over a month, I accidentally left my Bullet Journal at home, and I was lost without it.

After having to deal with innumerable digital files at work, I reinstituted DevonThink Office into my daily app list. I haven’t gotten enough nerve to try Tinderbox for the 20th time.

I use Blotter to keep a monthly calendar displayed on my desktop.

I have iMindMap installed and running at all time. Like it much better than Curio for simple mind maps. Every now and then, I try Scapple, but it is a bit too Spartan for me.

Last but not least, and the most used app right now for me is the beta version of Aquaminds Notetaker 4.0. The more I use it, the less I use anything else.


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