I could have written that post. When I read Hawk's Pile of Index Cards web site I got very inspired and ran out to buy myself a whole bunch of 3x5 cards and a box to hold them in. I bought little carriers for them and a Circa Hipster PDA. I was writing on index cards all the time, in the car, on the couch, in the bathroom. There were stacks of them everywhere. I had my whole GTD system on there too.
Then one day I got sick of shuffling through the cards and made a to do list on a regular notepad. I got so much done that day! Somehow seeing everything in one place really helped, so I gave up the index cards and moved to a notebook and online documents that are searchable.
But I still love index cards and I wish I could find a good way to use them. They make me think of about fragmentation, and tearing things down into pieces and rearrange them into new configurations.
- Twitter and microblogging
- GTD's "widgets" and breaking projects down into smaller tasks
- mind mapping/sweeping
- MP3s and the demise of albums
- RSS feeds
All these things have helped open my mind to the power of fragmentation and collection. My tendency is to create systems and bring information together (like I'm doing in this post). The idea of tearing it apart intrigues me.
The world is breaking down into smaller, more flexible pieces, without gatekeepers to tell you how they should be arranged. That's a good thing.