In my earlier posting on information strategy I discussed how I look at the way I filter information. This posting I will talk about the tools I use to filter incoming information, select, process and share it.
Let’s have a look at the basic picture I drew last time.
Of course this picture doesn’t show only the filtering. The arrows for Actions and Sharing imply that some processing and output is taking place as well.
In terms of functionality it looks more like this:
On the left hand side you see the different input channels. I read and select from that for both processing and filing. The output of the processing results in taking actions (decisions, taking stuff into client projects etc.), or in sharing through the different channels mentioned.
Let’s have a look at the tools I use.
For blogs I use the RSS reader Lektora
E-mail I read with Thunderbird and Gmail (private), and Outlook Exchange (business)
Podcasts come to me through iPodder and I listen to them with my iRiver H10 MP3 player.
Bookmarks I collect from Del.icio.us and Furl, through my RSS reader Lektora
Photo media come from Flickr, through RSS again.
I also routinely take photo’s of workshop sheets and sticky notes, which I load into my personal wiki (on which more later)
Conversations take place via Skype and GoogleTalk, and through IM in Trillian (I use IRC, Yahoo, Icq, MSN, AIM through Trillian). The reason I use all of these applications together is to increase reach. I also use a webcam for some of these applications.
Other conversations take place face to face, or via regular (cell) phone. Of all these conversations I take notes, either in my personal wiki, or pen and paper, to be transferred to the wiki later.
What I select from all my reading, listening and talking (which as I said in my previous post I do based on pattern detection, and current relevant questions I have) gets processed, for which I use three tools I am extremely fond of:
Wikka Wiki, which runs locally on my laptop on a local webserver. The wiki is the one place I use for working out ideas, filing, keeping notes, and the like.
For writing blogpostings and other items to be published on-line I use Qumana (the original full version, not the current Qumana Light Edition which is very good in it’s own right, but lacks the library and work pad function I need badly for my writing in progress. I am not an ‘in the moment’ blogger). Qumana has a very easy drop pad to select morsels of information, and allows me to post to any or all of the 8+ blogs I write in.
For searching outside Wikka I use the Copernic desktop search tool (which indexes the archived RSS as well).
Next to these three great tools I use Picasa and Irfanview for managing photo’s.
For sharing I use Movable Type and WordPress (both on my own server, as well as elsewhere), sometimes Blogger, for blog posting. Different Wikka Wiki installations, Media Wiki, and proprietary platforms for different CoPs. Del.icio.us for sharing bookmarks, and Flickr for uploading photo’s. E-mail of course (same as inputs)
Work related things end up, apart from company blog and company del.icio.us account, in a Sharepoint Portal which forms the back-office of our company.
All this next to conversations (again through the same tools as the inputs), presentations (PowerPoint) and documents (Office, OpenOffice)
Now we have seen my view on information filtering, and the tools I use, I will spend one or more coming postings on my daily routine.
In the mean time I am curious to hear more about your way of working. Differences with what I’ve described thusfar, similarities etc: I’d like to hear more about it.
To me understanding how we are reshaping our information strategies from what they were before blogging/social software/web2.0 is key in explaining others what they might do about what is perceived as information overload.