Manage your thoughts – right on your desktop!

by Ashwin on June 19, 2009

in Blogging Tips, General

Thoughts are very powerful – only if they blossom into something tangible.  How many times you came across an innovative or revolutionary idea, just to forget it an hour later? I don’t know about you, but I deal with this situation very often.  That is why, I use the following simple but very powerful tools to manage my thoughts, ideas, pointers and other essential information.

Microsoft OneNote

I fell in love with this wonderful tool from Microsoft, right from the day I started using it.  It helps you keep track of everything – right from the books to read for a month to an idea that can change the world!

I essentially use OneNote for the following:

  • Organize Personal information – like travel plans, books and movies, bill payment receipts and so on
  • Collection of useful and interesting information -  when I read some interesting stuff on the web and instead of just bookmarking it, I take a glimpse out of the core information to my OneNote
  • Blogging Ideas – I get over 20-30 blogging ideas every week but just 2-3 of them turn into my blog posts.  I capture all these ideas on my OneNote, gather more information and finally decide which one to blog on
  • To do – I tried so many to-do software but OneNote helps me like nothing else does.  I write down the tasks, assign priorities and sometime use the snapshot as my desktop wallpaper
  • For anything else to keep track of…

The only downside with OneNote is that it is NOT free, but putting your money on is well worth it.


As the name suggests, this is a free software available on SourceForge.  You can read about it and download from here –

Though FreeMind seems redundant together with OneNote, it serves a completely different purpose.  It helps you build on your ideas and tasks.

I use it very much for my Application Development projects.  Once the requirements and specifications are done, I create a “MindMap” out of them using FreeMind.  It gives you a clear picture of the different activities, dependencies, priorities and their status.  I would recommend using FreeMind for building on your ideas and evolution of tasks.

In short, for anyone dealing with many tasks or information everyday, these tools come in really handy.

I would love to hear your thoughts or ideas on the usage of these tools.  Feel free to poke me!!

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