Geek-Out on Goose Creek

Every so often I do a geek brain dump on the blog. I really don’t suffer the illusion that anybody gives a rat’s acetabulum about my particular computer workflow or preferred digital tools or what I do with them.

But for my own purposes, I do enjoy from time to time perusing the now twelve full years of blog posts as a time machine that looks back–not just at the nature of this place and life in it, but also at my tech evolution in blogging, from PC to Mac, with Photoshop and InDesign and such.

That said, in this week following a major reorganization of my old (and full) hard drive and the new (3TB) initially empty internal hard drive in the MacPro, I consider the software I’ve been using.

[su_highlight background=”#c8cfe2″ color=”#191f5a”]In the latest OS called Mavericks[/su_highlight], one useful new feature is that you can create tabs to folders or volumes from within Finder. This has been immensely useful in moving stuff around. If you are not using it on your Mac (running OS10.9) you might want to.

[su_highlight background=”#c8cfe2″ color=”#191f5a”]Circus Ponies Notebook[/su_highlight] Stupid name, great tool. Frankly, I’d abandoned it some while ago. But new version 4 came out a few weeks ago. AND (this is major) it plays nice with MS Word that I have to use for SF meeting notes. Typing in Word’s outline format is a hair-pulling frustration. Typing in CPN’s outline is a pleasure. [I’m also using it for blog posts text since it pastes in nicely to WordPress.]

[su_highlight background=”#c8cfe2″ color=”#191f5a”]App Launchers Redux[/su_highlight]. I went back to QuickSilver (free). Nah. I went back to LaunchBar. Nah. I finally returned to good old Alfred (Pro) and am enjoying the Evernote Workflow that makes EN oh so much more useful now.

[su_highlight background=”#c8cfe2″ color=”#191f5a”]Speaking of Evernote[/su_highlight] I’m reorganizing (more than 1k) notes using tags rather than notebooks. New stuff into INBOX, everything else into the trash or into CABINET with two or more tags.

[su_highlight background=”#c8cfe2″ color=”#191f5a”]PopClip[/su_highlight] For a couple of bucks, this has saved countless mouse-miles and keystrokes over the past six months. Today I added a clip to APPEND to the current clipboard. I copy a web page title and url using TEMPLATES add-on in Chrome, then select text-Append–more text–append. Wish I could make it skip a line between appends.

[su_highlight background=”#c8cfe2″ color=”#191f5a”]Remind Me Later[/su_highlight] A free app I use daily. Hit the hotkey, type “pay state taxes Thursday at 9a” and it goes immediately to my google calendar. A reminder pops up (on the desktop and iPhone) to remind me.

You’ve suffered enough. I owe you a photo with fluffy mindless text. Soon.

UPDATE–this just in: Laverna–a note taking web app billed as Evernote that lives on your own computer. We’ll see.


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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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