After some time keeping my various notes and jottings in different places, I finally saw sense this week and made a permanent switch to Yojimbo as a personal information database, aka external brain.
What prompted this was Merlin Mann’s post about Scattered notes - I was in exactly the same position as Merlin’s correspondent and found myself having the same problems. Was such-and-such a snippet in Notational Velocity, or did it live as a text file in my /notes directory? Had I stored a reference to it in my Gmail account, or stuck a file in one of my reference folders?
Usually, Spotlight was able to find the things I had lost, but as soon as I read Merlin’s post I knew I was doing things wrong. The time had come to move everything to one place, somewhere I could always turn to.
If I could have put everything in Notational Velocity, I would have done, but NV only does text. While most of my notes are texts, there’s the occasional PDF, screenshot, or Word doc that needs to be kept for future reference. I needed something that would take everything I might throw at it, and worked with the same simplicity and speed I’d grown accustomed to with NV. Yojimbo was the obvious choice.
Since making the switch I’ve been looking around for Yojimbo tips and scripts.
Quicksilver has a Yojimbo plugin that makes it very easy to search through notes. It’ll also display the contents of a note in large type, very handy for me because I use Yojimbo (and before it, NV) as an address book.
Our own Fraser Speirs has posted some neat scripts for getting stuff from Safari and NetNewsWire into Yojimbo fast. Tim Gaden’s got more about Quicksilver integration, bookmarklets and a handy Mail script.