Springpad Review

springpad mobile screenshot 2

This is my review of Springpad, an online/mobile personal notebook service.

I’m into the concept/social/design of Pinterest, but I don’t like how it’s heavily biased in favor of consuming rather than creating. Sure, you can take a pic of something you fancy at the local mom & pop store, but that hasn’t been my impression of how most people use the service. And as a writer, the lack of text/note support renders the site all but useless to me.

Further, I’m into taking notes, organizing stuff, making lists, and other assorted acts of geekery. I used to use personal wiki software Voodoopad, but started looking for an alternative using since they don’t have a viable mobile app. I tried Evernote, but found it limiting, counter intuitive, and a chore to use.

Enter Springpad. Springpad does it all. You can collaborate with friends on notebooks, make lists, set reminders, organize projects, file recipes, keep track of  restaurants you want to try… and do it all in an intuitive way.

Have a book you want to save for later? Click New Spring, Book, and search for the book you want to add. All the pertinent info like author, publisher, and options for purchase is entered for you to come back to later.

Springpad can also scan barcodes & record audio right from your smartphone.

What you can add to Springpad

My one critique would be that it may be too ambitious. The beauty of Pinterest is its simplicity: It’s an easy concept to pick up; you know right away what you’re supposed to do with it. Springpad doesn’t neatly fit in to any one category. It can be your Pinterest, Evernote, Amazon wishlist, reminder service… all-in-one. I mostly use it to archive things, and ignore the reminders/task functions. I already have services and apps I use for those sorts of things.

To get an idea of how I use Springpad, check out my coffee, beer, and great sentences notebooks.

This service will only get more useful as more people use it, so check it out and sign up today.


A Confession and Software Review

I’ve recently decided to embrace my innate geekness. While part of me decries my dependence on gadgets and the interwebs and wishes I could make more time for reading and being outside, the other part reminds me that I like fooling around with geeky stuff like this site, moving to a new server, switching from wordpress.com to wordpress.org.

I now realize the two can peacefully co-exist, and that the geek part of me can make good money which the non-geek part can use to buy books or take a vacation.

So today I want to plug a great piece of software for the Mac and iPhone/iPod touch: Things. Things is a hyped up to-do list app, based on David Allen’s Get Things Done that’s truly been helping me… get stuff done.

Let’s say I have a new idea for a t-shirt design. I’m not sure when I want to work on it or what it’ll take to get it into production. So I throw it in the “inbox,” which is a landing pad for all your thoughts/things to do. From there I can schedule it, categorize it, or put it in the “I’ll get to it someday” box. If I choose to schedule it, Things will automatically put it in my “Today” box on the day I chose.

things screenshot

It may sound complicated, but the pay off is that it forces you to pick priorities and helps you commit to them later. And analysis paralysis is half the battle for me, a dilemma that can make me completely overwhelmed and unable to accomplish anything.