Like everyone used to in the dark pre-internet ages I used to have a diary for appointments. Full of scribbles and crossings out but a bound hardback diary.
It also served as a record of what I’d done over the year, expenses claimed, notes for petty cash, but basically it was an appointment book.
Sometime in the mid nineties it became a Filofax, which made the notekeeping easier, and then sometime around the millennium I bought myself a Palm Pilot (I’m lying – it was a Handspring Visor, a palm pilot clone bought from an online computer disposals store) and I never looked back.
Everything online, synced with outlook, meeting reminders, offline email composition, note taking. I was in heaven. It was a truly wonderful device.
And I kind of stopped using paper diaries. I’d keep a day book, but that kind of degraded into an unstructured heap of scribbles.
But this year I tried something different. I bought myself one of these planner diaries – with a week on the left and a blank page for notes on the right. And I would keep notes about discussions, outages and problems in it as well as writing major appointments in it – I still used my smartphone and google calendar to run my life.
And each week the last thing I did on Friday was scan that week’s double page and save it to Evernote.
And it’s been invaluable.
Am I away three weeks tomorrow – easy. What day did a system have it’s SSL certificate updated? When in June did I go to Sydney? All easy.
And because I name all my notes about things yymmdd_name.ext it makes it easy to find the correct document in either evernote or dropbox by using the diary as an index.
So, fifteen years after I stopped using a paper diary, I’ve started again …