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  • Best thought-capture tool when your hands are full?

    I live in NYC without a car. I buy groceries weekly and walk home with my hands full (about 13 minutes walking time). Sometimes on the way home, I'm hit with good ideas, but it's a real pain to set down the bags and dig out my pen and paper to capture my thoughts.

    I was thinking about maybe using one of those pen-recorders. I could probably maneuver a couple of free fingers (while carrying bags) to click the record button on one of those pens and record my thoughts via voice into the recorder.

    I was just wondering if anyone had any better thoughts on the matter?

    Thanks,
    Chas29

  • #2
    Originally posted by Chas29 View Post
    I live in NYC without a car. I buy groceries weekly and walk home with my hands full (about 13 minutes walking time). Sometimes on the way home, I'm hit with good ideas, but it's a real pain to set down the bags and dig out my pen and paper to capture my thoughts.

    I was thinking about maybe using one of those pen-recorders. I could probably maneuver a couple of free fingers (while carrying bags) to click the record button on one of those pens and record my thoughts via voice into the recorder.

    I was just wondering if anyone had any better thoughts on the matter?

    Thanks,
    Chas29
    Recorders are really an obsolete technology, and the pen recorders have small controls. If you have a smart phone, I'd look at options there. I use an iPhone and there are lots of options.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thought capture

      Hi,

      I found that the best solution for me was to use something that I already had always with me... My cell phone.
      So I bought an application for my blackberry that starts recording as soon as it started and when I stop the recording, it sends the voice file by email for later processing, closing the application in the end. For the application to start I even assigned the convenience key of the phone.
      My main motivation was to capture when I was driving. Now I'm able to colect without watching to the phone. One touch in the convenience key, start speaking, one touch on the screen, and the thought is collected.

      For the blackberry I use this http://appworld.blackberry.com/webst...08903/?lang=en.
      Test one that works in your phone.

      Best,
      Joao Freire

      Comment


      • #4
        Thought capture

        With Android smartphones, you can hold down the search button to get voice input, then say "Note to self" followed by whatever you want to remember. It will be transcribed and sent to your Gmail account. I have these emails auto forward to my work email where I do my processing & organizing.

        Tom

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by mcogilvie View Post
          Recorders are really an obsolete technology, and the pen recorders have small controls. If you have a smart phone, I'd look at options there. I use an iPhone and there are lots of options.
          I agree with the suggestion to use your smartphone, but not all recorders are obsolete some are keeping up with technology and would be useful tools (although not I think it this situation).

          Comment


          • #6
            Try Quick Capture for GTD if you are an iPhone user.

            It has voice dictation, text or photo capture. It can send you an email or you can set it up to send direct to your web based system (I am using Nozbe) with one touch. Just speak in the mic, and press one button to have your text beamed right to your inbox.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by mcogilvie View Post
              Recorders are really an obsolete technology, and the pen recorders have small controls. If you have a smart phone, I'd look at options there. I use an iPhone and there are lots of options.
              I'd have to disagree with you on that one - I've tried various recording software on the iPhone, but it still necessitates one slide, possibly a press of the hardware button, launching the app, pressing record - all of which takes time (especially if I'm driving at the time).

              I've got a little Olympus Digital Recorder that I use - 1 button to record, with no faffing. Although i can download the files to my laptop, I tend not to - just play the sound file back and transcribe into my system (when i remember, of course, but that's a whole different issue!).

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by nick_ross View Post
                I've got a little Olympus Digital Recorder that I use - 1 button to record, with no faffing. Although i can download the files to my laptop, I tend not to - just play the sound file back and transcribe into my system (when i remember, of course, but that's a whole different issue!).
                I've also found my Olympus Digital Recorder to be easier to use in situations where doing a multistep action on my iPad or Phone isn't doable. I use mine a great deal in the car. Single button to hit for record and then one other button to hit for stop. I process my recorded message daily.

                Steve

                Comment


                • #9
                  Sharpie to Go

                  I lived in New York for a while, so I have a couple assumptions. You're carrying paper shopping bags -- maybe one bag with both hands?

                  How about a large Sharpie pen that you attach to the side of the bag. Idea being that you jot down a couple words of your ideas on the bag. It would require temporarily bearing the weight of the bag in one arm, but you'd be doing that anyway with an electronic device. The portable sharpie is just a quick device.


                  Originally posted by Chas29 View Post
                  I live in NYC without a car. I buy groceries weekly and walk home with my hands full (about 13 minutes walking time). Sometimes on the way home, I'm hit with good ideas, but it's a real pain to set down the bags and dig out my pen and paper to capture my thoughts.

                  I was thinking about maybe using one of those pen-recorders. I could probably maneuver a couple of free fingers (while carrying bags) to click the record button on one of those pens and record my thoughts via voice into the recorder.

                  I was just wondering if anyone had any better thoughts on the matter?

                  Thanks,
                  Chas29

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hi there!

                    I have the same issue sometimes! I would recommend the app Dragon dictation, you can voice record your thoughts and then send them to yourself by email or text message.
                    Either way I am very fond of writing and regardless the trouble of putting down the groceries bag I like to assume a certain kind of tranquility at the end of the day (when I'm walking home) so I take the thoughts' writing as a momentum to enjoy, if I really consider that writing down that thought is really what I should be doing!
                    Instead of juggling between groceries bags, a cell phone/notepad and pen/voice recorder...I just assume that "Oh this is really a good idea! I want to write it down! It take me about 20 sec. to put down the bags and another 20 to pick them up! In between I take my notes, attentively and dedicated, and may also look around and enjoy the moment. Then I resume my walking home! If your walking home after a work day why hurry?

                    PS: If you have an answering machine you can always call yourself and leave you a message with a bunch of great ideas (along the day too) and you'll have a pleasant surprise when you arrive home, sit on the couch and listen to your own inspired thoughts

                    Comment

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