Originally published as “Using my PDA As A Second Brain” on 18 Sept 2006.
Do you wish you had another brain? You probably do, sitting in your productivity system.
This past weekend I had a concrete example of how much I rely on my PDA to be my second brain. I had a weak moment, and ended up adopting a dog. In the process needed to provide addresses and phone numbers, both for the vet and references. Had I needed to remember these items, I would have been sunk. However, my second brain was right there (actually for the purpose of holding my shopping list), and I was able to give the information.
The part that I find remarkable is not that I use the system as it was intended, but rather the lack of stress that comes along with using it. I am a person who is bothered by leaving parts of forms I am required to fill out blank. I do not miss this stress.
What do I keep in my second brain that has proved itself to be useful at a moment’s notice?
- Phone numbers
- Names of tradespeople
- My calendar
- Work notes
- URLs for favorite websites
- Notes on completed “projects”
- Records of shots (animal and human)
- Shopping lists
It’s amazing how much I use this device as a reference tool.
Update December 2007
I no longer carry my work notes or my URLs with me. The work notes are not needed while I am away from either my home or work computer, and the URLs are now stored in Del.Icio.Us