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Last post Author Topic: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]  (Read 10283 times)

brotherS

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Hi,

I tried several approaches to keeping notes visible on the desktop(*) in the past, but none really worked for me. The best so far is keeping different win32pad (a lightweight txt editor) windows on my second screen and moving them around as needed, but that's not perfect because when Windows crashes I lose them all (so I have to always save them to the clipboard (where I use Ditto as a clipboard extender, see http://www.donationc...index.php?topic=9013). Also, once I reach 10 opened editor windows, it gets messy (and probably isn't so lightweight anymore).

I'm sure there MUST be a better way - I just haven't found it yet... any ideas?

(*)my brain likes visual reminders, so seeing the notes (or at least the most important ones) works better than not seeing them hidden away somewhere... and yes, I wonder how to integrate this into a GTD (see http://en.wikipedia..../Getting_Things_Done) system I plan to set up in 2012
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 02:45:27 AM by brotherS »

cmpm

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2011, 12:31:45 PM »
http://www.officelab...r/Pages/default.aspx

Found this Sticky Sorter from gHacks.
You may like it, or not, I do.

IainB

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2011, 01:20:39 PM »
@cmpm: Yes, StickySorter is a great affinity diagramming tool. I think it's probably unique. I reckon it's one of the nicest proggies to come out of MS Labs. Quite useful too. Nice how you can operate on the database using Excel. It could be a PIM (Personal Information Manager) to some extent.

MS Labs also did something called OneNote Canvas that looked  pretty interesting, but it was a developmental dead-end.

If you like SS, then you might like to take a look at the Compendium tool (though it's not "lightweight"). It's used for notes, for knowledge-building/sharing models, and comes from the Compendium Institute at the Open University in the UK. I have played around with this, but not in any productive way. I first came across it being used whilst I was working on a contract at a government department, some time back. It could be a PIM too, but I can't quite see how to use it to good effect as such, so I don't use it.
http://compendium.open.ac.uk/institute/

Winkie

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2011, 01:23:17 PM »
The best so far is keeping different win32pad (a lightweight txt editor) windows on my second screen and moving them around as needed, but that's not perfect because when Windows crashes I lose them all...

For that role I use 2 instances of Memo (AHK scripts by Drugwash) which has auto-save.

IainB

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2011, 02:31:11 PM »
@brotherS: Quite coincdentally, I have only today been putting my ToDo list up onto my desktop, using the Samurize tool. It was one of the last applications to have been migrated from my XP to my Win7-64 desktop.

I have it set up so that I can open the .TXT file containing the To Do list in my notepad - I use EditPad Lite as the notepad.
The file is ToDo.txt in My Documents folder.

I can open the file by right-clicking on the ToDo text on the desktop, or, if I hover the mouse over the text, a balloon pops up at that point telling me to [press "Shift+Ctrl+N" to edit ToDo list].

All this and the desktop objects in the foreground are managed through Samurize. That includes:
  • the analogue clock, which is built up using 5 or so objects, one of which is the moving seconds hand.
  • the red CPU and HDD temperature readouts taken from Speedfan (they are blurry because I converted the .PNG screenshot to .JPG format at 50%, so some of the colour has been lost).
  • the battery meter. (Some of the colour has been lost there too.)
  • the calender date/time.
  • the IP address.
  • the blurry Samurize desktop actions (which tells you on mouse hover what actions you can take and the AHK hotkey combos to do so - basically dynamically reload the Samurize configuration file, or edit the file before reloading it).
The above seem to form a single consolidated object on the desktop - you can drag it around if you want.

There are some other objects - 2 x rolled-up sticky notes (from Stickies), the open ToDo.txt file in EditPad Lite, and the Win7 desktop widgets in the background on the RHS of the desktop.

I originally tried out Rainmeter, but settled on using Samurize for this as it seemed by far the more powerful of the two. Though Rainmeter is fairly simple to use, and Samurize isn't (IMO), you can make your desktop stand on its head once you begin to understand how to configure Samurize, and it's not a resource hog either.
2011-11-17  083604 Screenshot - Samurize Desktop.jpg

I didn't think Samurize (which is quite an old application) would run on Win7, but I was wrong. It runs very well, but I have a glitch that I am trying to fix at the moment - the Taskbar won't always stay in the foreground, though the Start Menu always does. I am unsure what is causing that. It could be my wallpaper changer which changes every 1 minute.

EDIT: 2011-11-17 0945hrs
I am currently trying to see if I can incorporate the ToDo list from Stickies on the desktop, instead of the .TXT file. However, I suspect that I have probably got the best lowest common denominator in the shape of the .TXT file. You can't get much simpler than that.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2011, 02:46:21 PM by IainB, Reason: Note re Stickies at foot of post. »

rgdot

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2011, 02:31:39 PM »
As far as the visibility goes how about Stickies?

http://www.zhornsoftware.co.uk/stickies/

IainB

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2011, 02:44:01 PM »
Just edited/added a note about Stickies to the bottom of my picture-post above.

rgdot

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2011, 02:57:06 PM »
Yep very true, simple text files. In that sense you could maybe play with todo.txt too.

app103

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2011, 04:21:09 PM »
Notes all over the desktop works for some people, and any really good sticky note app will do that, but what I find useful is one that will remind me to actually read the notes, and includes some way for me to make some notes always visible on the desktop, while others are hidden away on memo boards organized in a nice tree structure.

Notezilla is the perfect app for that, for me. I get the best of all worlds with it. There is no shortage of features and is adaptable to many styles of note taking. (there is also a very generous discount for DC members)

IainB

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2011, 06:25:52 PM »
+1 for Notezilla from me.     :Thmbsup:

Interesting item here: Why You Should Set Up Your To-Do List in a Plain Text File (and How to Do It)

brotherS

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2011, 04:29:03 AM »
Wow!  :-* Thanks to all of you for this wealth of information.

StickySorter (http://www.officelab...r/Pages/default.aspx) impressed me because of the flexibility. In a way it could be used as a *GTD approach* when you use groups of stickies as lists, each sticky becoming a task on that 'list'. (I love when software comes with a nice video, like on http://www.officelab...r/Pages/default.aspx: "the many ways you can capture, organize, and display your notes with Sticky Sorter")

Memo (http://www.autohotke.../~Drugwash/misc.html) looks interesting too as a minimalistic alternative, will try it too.

Stickies (http://www.zhornsoftware.co.uk/stickies/) is free too, and according to the screenshots at http://www.zhornsoft....uk/stickies/ss.html it has an option to send stickies to sleep for a period of time, which would be helpful for me.

Both Samurize and Notezilla seem to be 'too big' for my current needs, and todo.txt doesn't resonate for some reason.

IainB

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2011, 06:31:16 AM »
@brotherS: Just to emphasise: Samurize is not a note/text tool - it's just a system that lets you build obects onto your desktop.
Why I liked it was because I could get my dead simple ToDo.txt file displayed dynamically on the desktop, along with some interesting widgets (e.g., CPU and HDD temps.). Change the ToDo.txt file, the desktop text changes too.

I didn't know about the AHK Memo that @Winkie mentioned. That looks quite good - but according to the notes it may be obsolete or has been superseded. In any event, its text task file could probably be what you could have embedded in a Samurize-controlled desktop.

Let us know what you end up using please. I'd be interested.

brotherS

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes? (not web-based)
« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2011, 02:12:35 PM »
I ended up with Stickies. Really positively surprised me... what a great little program! I love to be able to put some stickies to sleep for a day or two. Very neat how many little things have been taken care of to enhance the user's experience.

I understood what Samurize is about, I just have no need for widgets. :)

brotherS

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2011, 03:08:07 AM »
Stickies is so cool!  :up:

You can add skins, and there are hundreds to pick from! Wow. For now I added the "H12B Stickies" skin from Cynthia Grantz:



Also, I saw that there's an old ClifNotes review of the 2008 Stickies.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2011, 03:21:31 AM by brotherS »

panzer

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #14 on: November 18, 2011, 04:17:11 AM »
Cinta Notes could be useful too.

http://cintanotes.com/

daddydave

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #15 on: November 18, 2011, 06:12:20 AM »
Stickies is so cool!  :up:

You can add skins, and there are hundreds to pick from! Wow. For now I added the "H12B Stickies" skin from Cynthia Grantz:



Also, I saw that there's an old ClifNotes review of the 2008 Stickies.

I find that sticky notes are keeping me disorganized, but Zhorn's Stickies was always my favorite. Didn't realize he had added skins (and who knows what other features since last time I checked it out)! Love the web site redesign, too.
If bad things happen to other people, it's karma. If bad things happen to me, it's kismat!

J-Mac

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #16 on: November 20, 2011, 11:39:27 PM »
Tom Revell has had skins for Stickies for at least the last five years. I'm presently using Notezilla but I have donated to Tom in the past and used Stickies for years. Excellent program and very well developed over the years. Nice feature is sending notes over a network.

Jim

brotherS

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #17 on: November 21, 2011, 07:07:37 AM »
Yes, totally love it so far!  :Thmbsup:

Nice feature is sending notes over a network.
...to spam stuff on unsuspecting colleagues' desktops?  :D

J-Mac

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #18 on: November 21, 2011, 09:03:15 AM »
Yes, totally love it so far!  :Thmbsup:

Nice feature is sending notes over a network.
...to spam stuff on unsuspecting colleagues' desktops?  :D

Well.....  only if you really want to...   http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b104/J-Mac001/TFR1EA.gif
lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]


Jim

IIRC you can also send Stickies to others designated as Friends; if not on your network they are emailed.

daddydave

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #19 on: November 21, 2011, 10:39:57 AM »
Tom Revell has had skins for Stickies for at least the last five years. I'm presently using Notezilla but I have donated to Tom in the past and used Stickies for years.

Ah..I had a vague feeling I'd overlooked it before somehow, thanks, J-Mac. And thanks brotherS for pointing that out!
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rjbull

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #20 on: November 22, 2011, 02:54:28 PM »
I'm presently using Notezilla but I have donated to Tom in the past and used Stickies for years.
J-Mac, why the change?  Superior organisation features?

J-Mac

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2011, 09:15:09 PM »
I'm presently using Notezilla but I have donated to Tom in the past and used Stickies for years.
J-Mac, why the change?  Superior organisation features?

In sopme ways, yes. Though I do miss Stickies and may jump right back to it. I got Notezilla at a hefty discount plus it was getting a lot of positive comments here on DC, so I decided to give it a try. Of the thre apps I have purchased from Conceptworld, Notezilla has been the most stable and consistent. Piky Suite has since been abandoned and RecentX has some serious CPU usage issues IMO.

Jim

johnk

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #22 on: November 23, 2011, 09:48:57 AM »
Might not suit your purposes, but I use a combination of Notezilla and Rainlendar for my desktop notes/todos/reminders.

I find Rainlendar particularly helpful. It has a desktop display mode which I use to show my todo list and calendar on the desktop, and it also offers reminders and syncs with Google Calendar/Tasks.

rjbull

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #23 on: November 23, 2011, 10:09:15 AM »
I use a combination of Notezilla and Rainlendar for my desktop notes/todos/reminders.
+1 for Rainlendar, very good reminder program.  Combining it with a sticky notes program of one's choice would be a good pairing, especially as Notezilla, Stickies and others can also pop up notes over particular windows, so you can have notes appropriate to particular programs, actions or Web sites.

J-Mac

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Re: lightweight software for organizing notes offline? [Stickies, StickySorter]
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2011, 12:05:18 PM »
One nice feature of Notezilla that I should mention is that you can apply a sticky note to a window and have it associated with that window or web page. IOW, you create a note about a particular web page and associate it and then whenever you visit that web page that sticky note will appear there. Pretty cool - I've used it and it seems to work! (I say that because I doubted that it would for some reason!)

Thanks!

Jim