2009.5 hpda calendars now available

A little earlier than usual, the new hPDA calendar templates for the second half of 2009 are now available. You can download them for free on the Active Voice Downloads page, along with the 2009.0 calendar templates. Just click on “See the Templates” –> “Organization and Lists.”

Active Voice offers wallpapers and hPDA templates as free .png and scalable-vector .pdf graphics that you can download to your desktop and use in your favorite planner. They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution – Noncommercial – Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

While you’re there, please take a look at some of the other free templates that I offer. Don’t see something you need? See something that needs improving? Feel free to leave me a comment or contact me.

2009.0 hpda calendars are here

hPDA template 2008 calendar downloadNew hPDA calendar templates for the first half of 2009 are now available on the Active Voice Downloads page. Just click on “See the Templates” –> “Organization and Lists.”

The popular 2009 calendar iPhone wallpapers are now available too.

Active Voice offers wallpapers and hPDA templates as free .png and scalable-vector .pdf graphics that you can download to your desktop and use in your favorite planner. They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution – Noncommercial – Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

paperjamming podcast

PaperJamming CardLast week I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Stephanie Diamond of the Marketing Message Blog for her podcast about PaperJamming. It was a pleasure chatting with her beforehand about how to apply PJ to business files, as well as during our relaxed, conversational interview. Thanks, Stephanie!

The podcast is now available on Stephanie’s blog here. In it, I talk about the ideas behind PaperJamming and describe the basic elements of Types and Stages for organizing, storing, and disposing paper and electronic files simply and easily . It’s a good introduction to the philosophy and principles behind the PaperJamming approach to personalized file management made fun.

Stephanie wrote that she finds PaperJamming to be a “brilliant conceptual idea. . . . Simple, elegant.” I hope you’ll give the podcast a listen and then head on over to the free downloadable templates and give PaperJamming a try for managing your business files.

Remember, just because your files have a life of their own doesn’t mean they have to run yours.

introducing cardnets

CardNet Blank FrameShortly after I introduced the latest round of Active Voice productivity templates for the Hipster PDA (hPDA — available as free downloads here), I started to think about what the next round of templates would look like.

I wanted them to be different — not just in terms of content, but also in terms of the way they actually worked.

I took a look at how hPDA cards are designed, and how people use them. Most cards are designed to be used either as stand-alone units or together in sequence. But in life, few good ideas unfold in a steady linear direction over time — they tend to go off in many different directions at once.

So, I asked, what would cards look like that were designed to be used, not in straight lines, but in nonlinear networks? What if they could capture the multidimensional, interrelated nature of our ideas as they happen? CardNets are my answer. Maybe they can be yours, too.

Continue reading “introducing cardnets”

new calendars are here

hPDA template 2008 calendar downloadNew hPDA calendar templates for the second half of 2008 are now available on the Active Voice Downloads page. Just click on “Hipster PDA Templates” — “See the Templates.”

There, you’ll find calendars for the standard template design under “Organization & Lists” and for the hPhone custom set under “Just for Fun.”

Active Voice offers wallpapers and hPDA templates as free .png and scalable-vector .pdf graphics that you can download to your desktop and use in your favorite planner. They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution – Noncommercial – Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

one more thing…

hPDAphone Projects template.In conjunction with the launch of Mac OS X Leopard, Active Voice is proud to announce the complete set of hPDAphone templates is now available for you to download and use in your favorite personal planner. Ever since the original announcement back in July, I’ve been introducing new templates every few weeks — a little more frequently than new OS X rollouts, but not by much.hPDAphone template: calendar

What started as a lark has turned into the longest sustained burst of template-based creativity I’ve had so far. The responses have been overwhelmingly positive and enthusiastic, and have spurred me to keep trying to come up with ever-more lickable designs. Along the way, I’ve improved my skills with The Omni Group’s transcendently brilliant OmniGraffle app, which means better graphic design options for my clients, for example QuinnCreative.hPDAphone: Address template

Look for occasional additions to the core set of templates — after all, there’s still a lot of blank space on the home screen. Also, look for a 2008.0 calendar template soon.

And if you decide to mix other templates in with your hPDAphone templates, don’t worry — you won’t brick your hPDA.

paperjamming your computer

Cluttered DeskFor freelance writers, it’s all about the clip. All your research files, interview transcripts, and notes are there to help you create a professionally written product. But what do you do with the rest?

Considering how inexpensive external storage is these days, it might seem easier to just keep buying more — and larger — external hard drives or to upload your old files to an online storage provider. But those options have some very tangible drawbacks for freelancers.

As a freelancer, you have contractual and legal obligations to keep certain records for a specified time. Beyond those, disposal significantly reduces the amount of time that a program like Blacktree’s popular Quicksilver requires to index your files. It also cuts down the time — and narrows the results — of keyword and metadata searches.

In short, the less stuff you have to manage, the less you have to manage stuff.

That’s where PaperJamming techniques and templates come in. PaperJamming is personalized file management made fun. Here’s how to implement it on your computer:

Continue reading “paperjamming your computer”

my hpda configuration

My first hPDAI discovered Merlin Mann’s hPDA concept around the same time I discovered the Rollabind disc binding system, and for me the benefits of combining them were immediately self-evident. I hacked my first “field-strength” ring-bound hPDA using covers from an old poly folder, a strap made from an elastic hair band, and three small Rollabind rings; it proved to be rugged, reliable, and indispensable.

The only problem I had was that the thin covers allowed the rings to torque sideways when stored in my back pants pocket, flexing the covers and the cards at their weak hole joints. So when Levenger introduced its CircaPDA this past summer — using the same extra-thick clear poly covers as their other Circa notebooks — I quickly retired my original covers and have been proudly packin’ Circa ever since.

Quality-wise, it was like moving up from a kit car to a Lexus. But regardless of the bodywork, it’s what’s under the hood that ultimately counts. Here’s what’s under mine:

Continue reading “my hpda configuration”

boom

hPDAphoneWith the iPhone, Apple has once again completely reinvented the way people interact with information. Those of us who rely on our hPDAs know the feeling.

Just for fun, here is a new cover for your hPDA with a familiar interface. Featuring buttons for most of the common hPDA tasks and favorite hPDA- and CircaPDA-related sites, it will wow people when you whip it out of your back pocket to make a note.

Two-year license not required.

Active Voice offers templates as free .png and scalable-vector .pdf graphics that you can download to your desktop and use in your favorite planner. They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution – Noncommercial – Share Alike 2.5 License.

Disclaimer: this template is intended to fall under the satire/parody category of fair use. It cannot be sold or re-sold. No infringement of copyright is intended.

UPDATE, 7/16/07: Since introducing the template, several people have asked me if I’d consider creating a set of templates based on this design. Well, I hadn’t planned on it, but why not? Over the next couple of months, I’ll be introducing templates for each of the buttons. Check the Downloads page regularly for updates.

updated hPDAphone home screenThis decision required me to go back to the original design and modify it to make it more usable as a base for a whole series of templates. I’ve changed the dimensions to maximize the “screen space” and also created all-new buttons that are entirely vector, for improved scalability. So, please start by downloading the new “home screen” template, now available.

Collect them all!

 

new hpda templates: writing ideas

hPDA Template: Writing Ideas“That would make great blog entry!”

How many times have you found yourself reaching for your hPDA to jot down a great idea that came to you in the field? If you’re like me, more times than you can count.

Problem was, I would have to jot them down on whatever card I happened to have handy — a footer, a source card, a half-full note capture, or even a blank card. Later, when I would assemble the cards into the “Ideas” section of my to-do notebook, the hodge-podge of cards of all shapes and sizes just looked all wrong. My ideas deserved something better.

Yours do, too.

Check out my new Writing Ideas Cards on the downloads page. In portrait and landscape, scalable for hPDAs up through Classic.

Active Voice offers templates as free .png graphics that you can drag-and-drop to your desktop and use in your favorite planner. They are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution – Noncommercial – Share Alike 2.5 License.