Dennis Kennedy has some thoughts about The Continuing Search for a Personal KM Solution
Once again I've found that my favorites and folder system have become unworkable, my system for tracking good info in e-mail newsletters doesn't work, and I still haven't figured out a good ways to store and manage news feed items.
Given the hypothetical case of receiving email with attachments or "interesting" links to new information, Dennis is trying to figure out the best way to deal with this. He gives a list of the half dozen things he might do - the big issue being that he doesn't find any one of them the best method. Then he gives us an accounting of what he thinks he'd like:
- Total ease of entry - not much more than copy-and-paste or copy and hit a "macro key"
- A simple and easy to assign category system ("blog", "IP Memes", "Law Practice Today column", "Article Ideas")
- Automatic indexing or strong search capacities
- A way to assign keywords (probably)
- A time stamp to show hold old or new an item is
- A way to "browse" the clippings to see what's there and get ideas
- A way to see related items
- An easy way to pull the information out, retaining any links and formatting. A bonus would be to parse and pull out the URL in the form of http://www.url.com. A super bonus would be to automatically parse and produce the [full html code, including the description for the entry]
He's already got some ideas of how to pursue this dream (use Outlook better, skillful Word usage, PowerMarks or other bookmark manager, private blog, personal wiki, MS OneNote, Excel, AskSam or other database, clipping tool like Snippy, card file like AZZ CardFile, Enfish, Worldox, X1) and he is looking for more suggestions. Hopefully, he will continue blogging about his search for a good tool.
I still like PersonalBrain, though as Dennis suggests, at least half of the battle is the process for how I use the tools. PersonalBrain doesn't have some of the "automatic" features that he wants, but it lets me store just about any type of file/url and I can make extensive notes on the materials I archive. For instance, I frequently drop PDF's into my Brain for later usage, rather than the link to the PDF. I would love the additional feature of sophisticated search to help pull up related items.
Update 2 Aug: Cleaned up.