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10/02/2008 Managing Inspiration

I get a lot of e-mail and read a lot of Web sites. Most information I pass through quickly, but every once in a while there’s some tidbit that spurs some big thought and is worth saving. If you’re like me, you’ll bookmark the page or save the e-mail. The trouble is trying to get back to that information especially after some time has passed.

I usually search through my e-mail or bookmarks, and then try to figure out where that content is. The Web and computers, with all their searchability, are still hard places to find things, or rather, re-find things.  

So now I’m playing around with a tool called Evernote. It let’s me grab anything, images, text, URLs and put them into searchable notes. It can even scan text in images. Now I know what to do with all of those business cards that I don’t want to transcribe.

The two biggest advantages I see so far are the very good search tool built in, with text recognition, and the fact that its device agnostic, meaning you can use in on your computer, from the Web, or with your mobile device.

So far, it’s helping me keep track of the little information items that are important to me. The question is whether I’ll keep this up or find it too much to keep up with.

But it’s a great idea. Applying Web search to my personal items seems like a forward thinking thing to do.

I’d love to see something like this on e-commerce sites, so that rather than saving the whole item in a shopping basket, I can grab distinct pieces to my personal shopping folder. And keep them there.


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