Reference

Assessment Tasks Recorder

A template to record assessment tasks. Has room to write what you have to do, when you got it, when it's due, and the grade you received. Available in Letter, A4, A5 and Classic.

Usage advice: 

Use to record your assessment tasks by subject.
TO PRINT: A4 and Letter planner users print as usual
A5 and classic users go File->Print Setup and choose the size of paper.

Paper size: 
Multiple Sizes
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader, Mac OS X Preview)
Language: 
English

Textbook Hire Record

A basic table which is great for recording the textbooks that you have hired for school/college/uni whatever. Available in Letter, Classic, A4 and A5.

Usage advice: 

Use this to record the textbooks that you get out for school. It has date, title, staff (to sign that it is returned) and barcode (so you know which one is yours), with another column (in the second version that appears here) for which subject the book is for.

I recommend filling it out, so if you lose your textbooks, you know what the barcode is and if you have returned it and things like that.
To print:
- Letter and A4 planner users just print as usual.
- Classic and A5 planner users go File -> Print Setup and change the paper size to what you use. It should work.

Paper size: 
Classic (5.5 x 8.5)
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader, Mac OS X Preview)
Language: 
English

Book At A Time Bible Reading Plan

A template designed to aid in your bible reading. It lists books of the bible by "average reading time" and provides a place for notes as you read though the bible.

Usage advice: 

The template will give you an overall view of how long it takes to read through each book of the bible so as you have time, you can look at the "average reading time" on the template to pick the books you'd like to read depending on your time available. I've used this on long flights to read an entire book of the bible as I've flown. It's quite helpful and only takes three classic size pages (double sided) to list all 66 books and leave space for notes. For a specialized reading plan that you can use in concert with this template, see Woodrow Kroll's book "Read your bible one book at a time".

Paper size: 
Classic (5.5 x 8.5)
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
PDF Reader (Adobe Reader, Mac OS X Preview)
Language: 
English

The Digital Packrat

Obsolete Computer MuseumWoe to my poor wife, for she has married a packrat. You know my type: the person who keeps one --or multiple-- "junk drawers" or "junk boxes" filled with discarded wires, ticket stubs, twisted metal bits, leather scraps, ancient gadgets, cheap giveaway items with long-bankrupt businesses' names inscribed, old candies, and unknown thingamabobs that just might belong to something important, so they can't be thrown away without incurring stress. To be fair, I'm getting much better, and have learned a certain "threshold" of actually discarding or giving away unused things. "Chuck it!" is my new mantra if in doubt. (I'm glad to say that the lab at left is not my own, although I've come close.)

But being a packrat who is also an I.T. professional, it also means I have many thousands of freeform digital bits drifting loose about my many machines as well. Lately we've been getting ready to move house, and part of this means the consolidation of information from my various Mac, Linux and Windows boxes that will soon be put into storage. Looking over the vast array of data scraps, I realised how very important it was to do something about it. And I didn't want to waste all my valuable time doing it, so I resisted the geek-driven urge to create a wiki, database or online application, and instead turned to a user-friendly solution I've used to good effect in the recent past.

Business Card Sources Page

Pages desigend to give you a place to literally stick business cards for places you shop. Requires Double Sided Tape.

Thumbnail: 
Usage advice: 

This is a sources page for lazy people (like me) who aren't going to recopy data that is already in business card form.

If you print it out and apply double sided tape to the striped areas you will be all ready to add business cards to your planner's referance section. When you have a target card take off the other side of the double sided tape, stick and you are almost done.

The business cards attach sideways, but there are 2 lines either underneith or above to write a quick discription (eg Cakes, Web Guy) and a little circle to rate the service (the more colored in the better).

The Draw Tempale offer 3 other ratings squares (5 stars, single starfor numberical rating and a "happy face" without a mouth).

Paper size: 
Classic (5.5 x 8.5)
License: 
Creative Commons
Applications required: 
Open Office 2.0 Draw and Blue Highway Fonts or PDF Reader
Language: 
English

The Commonplace Book: Part II

L.M. Montgomery, Ontario Red 2Continued from Part I.

The Commonplace Books (or just commonplaces) of old were series of books, stuffed with scraps, inspirations, snippets of information, sketches, clippings, photographs, poems, jokes, references, and anything else pertaining to the interest of the person (or group) who kept it. A common fixture in the homes of writers, professionals, artists and academics for many centuries, the notion has all but faded in this digital age of commodity data and instant searches. But there's no reason that we can't resurrect such a invaluable resource in this day and age. In fact, it could ultimately prove worthy not only for our daily work and pleasure, but also as a legacy to leave our children and grandchildren, a gathering of those pieces reflecting both the personality of its keeper and the happenings of a bygone day.

In Part I, we looked at the uses of commonplace books in history, and how they were used for gathering information and learning. In this article, we'll examine how a commonplace book works, and provide a few ideas towards starting and maintaining one of your own using modern supplies and methods. (Note that, while this article chiefly concerns keeping a paper-based version, many of the concepts work equally well using digital tools like DEVONthink Pro for Mac OS X.)

The Commonplace Book: Part I

Milton's Commonplace BookOver at the PigPog Blog is a great post about Storing Nuggets of Information, calling for ideas. This is something I've been struggling with for many years myself, and have only lately been making any sort of headway. When I think about all the years of WordPerfect files, text files, photos stuck between pages of books, MS Office files, sundry (often ancient) forms of databases, scraps of paper in drawers, JPGs, PSDs, PCXs, shoeboxes of articles, OOo files, CorelDRAW illustrations, Commodore 64 Paperclip files, and so on, it's a wonder I have any sort of retention at all except for memory. Half of the files I've gathered over the years are locked in obsolete proprietary formats gathering dust on 5.25" or 3.5" floppies, probably never to be seen again. (For the record, none of my current computers even have a floppy drive). I've had to face the fact that many of these potentially valuable scraps of information have been lost forever.

There is a possible solution for this dilemma, though, and one that comes from a bygone age. For many centuries, it was one kept faithfully by the learned, the artistic, the scholarly, and even the merely curious. I'm referring to the Commonplace Book.