100 Days to Offload, Day 13 – New apps (and plain text files)
For the thirteenth day of the 100 Days to Offload blogging challenge, I'd like to report some changes to my tools, and muse about uses for plain text files.
It may take you 3 minutes to read this post.
So, an update to my minimalist phone setup: I've decided to switch out Slim Launcher for KISS Launcher. I realized that I kept bypassing Slim Launcher or not using at all, in favor of my phone's pre-installed app launcher; to be honest, Slim Launcher is frustrating to use when I really need an app, but it's not on the homescreen app list. However, said pre-installed launcher kept crashing randomly, probably because my phone's very old. Thus, I decided to use KISS Launcher instead, which limits the number of apps onscreen, but still lets me access the rest of my apps.
After my unusually-popular “Notes in one big text file” blog post, I've been thinking about other plain text files that I could use for my everyday workflow. I've found interesting suggestions from these articles:
- 8 Everyday Things That You Can Track with Text Files
- 10 Plain Text Files You Should Have on Your Desktop for Higher Productivity
So far, here are the plain text files that I use frequently. They're saved in the Nextcloud folder on my computer, and I've created shortcuts for them on the desktop.
- todo.txt and done.txt: For my upcoming and completed tasks. I've realized that, at least for my brain, tasks only have two states: either not done yet, or already done.
- PersonalLedger.journal: For tracking my expenses, which all come from my wallet. I don't use any of the command-line programs, which means I have to check my balances manually. However, in the past when there were discrepancies between what's in my wallet and what's on-screen, I end up re-calculating the balances by hand anyway. I suppose double-entry bookkeeping is overkill for my use-case, but I like to be aware of where my money goes to and comes from.
- Journal.md: A single text file for my journal entries, filed in reverse date order, so that when I open up Notepad++ or Markor, I can just add new entries from the top. Inspired by how Lifeograph stores entries in its plain text .journal file.
- Notes.md: Refer to the “Notes in one big text file” link for why and how I set this up, as well as the Zettelkasten blog post.
- QuickNote.md: Similar to Cal Newport's WorkingMemory.txt, and basically a dump file for random thoughts that don't belong to the other files.
In addition, I have saved directly to my desktop:
- A text file listing all the ideas I plan to blog about, or have already published, for the 100 Days to Offload challenge
- The draft for the current day's blog post, which I'll later move to my Nextcloud folder just before publishing.
I think I'll create an Ideas.md file for all my writing ideas, not just topics for blog posts — a “spark file” of sorts. This is separate from my Notes.md file, because Notes.md is for my research, while Ideas.md will be for quotes, writing prompts, and potential plot seeds.
This work by Daryl Sun is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.