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Program of the Day 2 - OneNote
If you think note-taking is just something you only do in school…well, you ought to expand your intellectual horizons, in my opinion. :)
Well, dear reader, perhaps you’re just sick of pen and ink. In which case I would point you towards Microsoft OneNote, your one-stop solution for all the notes you’ll ever need to take offline on the computer.
Notes can consist of text, images, AutoShapes, etc., as you’d expect in word, but it’s a lot freer. You can double-click to type anywhere or choose a pen (I like a calligraphic green one, personally) and draw anywhere.
You can also give it a nice background, with horizontal-rule notebook paper, gridded graph paper, etc. I’m sure there are more options, such as importing a custom background; I just haven’t found them yet.
Also neat are tags. By default, Ctrl+1 adds a checkbox next to an item; you can subsequently click on it to check it off. A tag search allows you to generate a to-do list with ease.
And it autosaves your notebook.
If you have Microsoft Office, consider checking out this oft-overlooked notebook program. You may be pleasantly surprised by the freedom it allows you. :)
APPLICATIONS [not apps]
Continuing with my random list of lists… some of the latest applications I’ve been using [Windows 7]:
- OneNote – this might just be the most undervalued piece of software in the Office Suite. Perfect for collecting random stuff, organizing thoughts, planning, and so much more. Also: it can read text from photos and pictures (i.e. you can take a screen grab of a site and it knows what the text is and makes it searchable).
- Inkscape – Vector Graphic drawing software. FREE. And since I don’t know Illustrator, I don’t know if I’m missing any features. [Also, GIMP for photo editing is good too]
- F.LUX – software that changes the brightness of your monitor depending on the time of day. Oddly it’s a really nice feature.
- Divvy – helps manage how much space programs take up on the monitor. Good for making multiple programs easily visible. Jury is still out on the usefulness of this one.
- Microsoft Security Essentials – no more paying for virus software. This one has it covered and it’s free.
Organising my day
The problem (just take a look at my desk)!
In todays frenetic business environment it’s more important than ever to try to organise and plan your day effectively.
Most of us are mobile - we work in several different locations & our clients expect us to be available at all times of the day. Probably most of us too, have to work on more than one device; maybe a desktop, laptop and mobile (some of us have to work on more than one operating system but that’s another story!)
Although I work on windows and Linux boxes my primary systems are Mac based so naturally my organisational tools reflect this. I use an iPad, a Mac Pro back at base and a MacBook air for taking stuff to clients and for working remotely. For my phone I use an iPhone 4s.
99% of my business is done via email so a reliable service is vital. I use exchange for my business mail and buy the hosting service from Sherweb for $6.95 per month. Uptime is excellent and I don’t have all the hassle of maintaining a server, worrying about certificates etc. It’s a breeze to set up & works well across all platforms and devices although you have to use imap/webmail with Thunderbird and Mail.
Software & applications
Believe you me I’ve tried every conceivable piece of software in an attempt to make me more organised (and I’ve spent plenty of bucks in the process too!).
One of my favourite utilities is Dropbox - this acts as my repository for files and folders and is compatible with all my kit including, iPad, iPhone, mac, linux, android and windows.
For organising ToDos, writing notes, storing webpages and documents etc.I particularly like the way that OneNote works but of course that’s native to Windows and is not available on the Mac platform. A workaround is to use SkyDrive and then you can access and edit your OneNote file through any compatible browser (like Safari). It doesn’t work through the iPad browser though and you do lose some of the functionality. There is a OneNote iphone/ipad app but it is only available through the US app store (mail me if you want to know how to get round that particular problem!). You can also use MobileNoter but I’ve has mixed success with this.
There are several OneNote’ish alternatives for the Mac including Curio (expensive but with tons of features -maybe too many?), Evernote (brilliant at cross-platform integration but I’ve never been good at organising the notes), Growly Notes (excellent developer, visually similar to One Note and it’s free!!) and my current fave Circus Ponies Notebook. CP Notebook has a superb indexing system (Multidex), incorporates web clipping, inserting documents, integrates with ical etc. and best of all has a gorgeous version for iPad. The iPad version had some bad press because the developers took ages to get the syncing right (you used to have to do it through iTunes!) but it now integrates seamlessly with Dropbox and is one of my most used applications. There’s no iPhone version but for taking notes on the hoof I use Alfons Schmid Notebooks (A very active developer who responds to problems and suggestions, it syncs really well with Dropbox and there is an iPad version. Something else that’s really useful is that you can also use Markdown with Notebooks and then convert to HTML.
So a lot of kit there but how do I use it all! Well you’ve probably read Paul Allen’s book Getting Things Done - my take is a very simplified version:
In My Circus Ponies Notebook I have a ‘Daybook’ page that has:
1. What do I have to do today to keep out of Jail & keep my clients and staff happy - that might mean paying the VAT, uploading some web alterations for a client, finishing an urgent presentation or just paying the wages.
2. What should I do today - stuff that’s not time critical - maybe finish my blog, tidy up a database, finish the accounts.
3. What would I like to do today - this is the best bit and I always try & cross at least one ‘like’ of my list each day; Learn a bit of Java, do a bit of research, try out a new app etc.
4. The day book also contains 2 other sections - Time sheet and charges.
5. I then have a tab (or sub section if you prefer) for Clients and each Client in turn has subsections for current work - e.g. If I glance at one of our clients, Nielsen, I can see that we have a sub sections for ‘Dec 11 email campaign’, ‘Database Schema’, Italian presentation, and archive (all clients have an archive section). There are other tabs for ‘Projects’ (includes programming, marketing etc.), ‘Reference’,’Scrapbook’ which are all self explanatory.
These lists get added to from various devices throughout the day depending on where I am, with Dropbox as the conduit. Each evening, either before I leave work or at home on my Air I update the lists having checked ical for upcoming events.
If anyone wants me to do a review on any of the software mentioned above or a ‘How to’ just leave a comment or email me and I’ll see what I can do.
Dropbox - www.dropbox.com
Evernote - www.evernote.com
Growly Notes - http://growlybird.com/GrowlyBird/Notes.html
Circus Ponies Notebook - http://www.circusponies.com/
David Allen Getting Things Done - http://www.davidco.com/
MobileNoter - http://www.mobilenoter.com
Evernote and/or OneNote?
My upgraded version of Office Professional includes OneNote predominantly displayed on Outlook’s menu. Being an Evernote user I checked out the reviews. http://ow.ly/1AoL2w
5 Essential Tools that Every Nurse Informaticist Should Have
Our daily task revolves around taking notes, grabbing screenshots, diagramming workflows while staying organized and synched. The following tools will help you do all those things with ease and convenience that you have never imagined possible.
OneNote is a basic word processor which saves information on a page in a Notebook. Unlike Word, OneNote allows you to enter text, tables and pictures virtually anywhere in the document. Notes can be highlighted and annotated just like a real notebook. Nurse Informaticists can use OneNote as an application to document and organize project implementation records. Screenshots of current EMR configuration settings can be stored here for future reference. It can also store team meetings minutes for instant retrieval when needed. MS OneNote can serve a multitude of purposes which only depends on your creativity.
- 2. Evernote
Have you been forgetful lately? Well that’s no longer a problem because Evernote can help you remember anything like an elephant (they say elephant never forgets). I believe it’s true because I’ve never met a forgetful elephant yet. Evernote is a multi-platform note-taking application which will enable you to recall important information with the aid of your PC or any mobile devices. It can record any information from one device and automatically syncs it to all your connected gadgets. Equipped with an OCR (optical character recognition), it can search text in most file formats; finding notes using keyword is a breeze. This application can be used to augment the limitation of OneNote which is synchronization to mobile devices. Try it coz it’s FREE.
- 3. Greenshot
Taking screenshots using Windows built-in print screen function is a pain in the @#$. It is so tedious and sometimes inaccurate. With Greenshot, taking pictures of your application’s settings (for documentation) is a breeze. It’s as easy as taking real picture with a camera. It even comes with a nifty “flash” sounds and visual flashing light effect. It can be configured to take full screen shot or just a designated region of your screen. Protected patient information can be blurred via its “obfuscate” function. Try it and I bet that your life will never be the same.
If you have no Visio and your organization is too broke to buy one, then try Pencil Project. It was created as a web application prototyping tools but can also be used to diagram workflows. It is very easy to use and the best part is, its FREE.
- 5. Dropbox
Are you still carrying a floppy or a thumb drive to work? Well, if you do, I’m going to be honest with you, “it’s no longer in fashion”. That is why it is a good idea that you try this application. You can upload your files here and access it from any internet-enabled devices. You can start working on a document from anywhere and finish it later somewhere. This is also the easiest way to transfer files between your PC and mobile devices like iPad or Android mobile phones. It’s free with 2 gigs, so try it now and be hip.
(and I instantly think of KOTOR. Meatbags, amirite!?)
The real blog is coming later, but as of now I only had one question for the Tumblr-verse.
I’ve been using Microsoft OneNote for all of my writing needs for about the last two years. I’ve only just now realized that this has been a fairly simplistic take on writing a novel.
Does anybody have any hands-on experience with a writing program they really favor?
derping around in Microsoft OneNote! omggggg this program is just AMAZING it is just what I needed to keep track of all my shit
I got this thing thru one of those 30-day Microsoft trials, so um… am I gonna be unable to get my shit off it once my trial ends OR WHAT…
also if anyone could point me to some way to buy just the one program, or even better… some free version of it because haha BOOTLEG PROGRAMS FTW
no but seriously this program is amazing help a bro out here guys ;A;
My office tool box
It’s been one of those days today that was quickly brightened by a supply delivery of my new post it notes. This got me thinking, what do I really need to work and makes my life better. After much procrastination I have come up with the following top 9 things:
- iPhone - honestly use it all the time for work and personal, can’t live without
- OneNote - Microsoft did something right with this one! Now with iPhone app too!
- Rulered PostIt notes - Some of the only paper I use, writing out my daily to do lists
- Coffee - with out it…….. just make sure I don’t go without
- Skype - I grew up on chat programs (ICQ anyone?) helps answer questions quick and cuts out the long distance calls
- Excel - Love my big spreadsheets! So many ways to cut data and make graphs!
- Red pen - feared as a student, now helps bring out whats really important on all that printed material
- Facebook - the necessary distraction for my “info-snacking”
- Visio - Yes another geek program but for a visual person helps make sense of it all!
What are your “makes work easier” things?