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John Norris: More HPDA templates and 'the Meta Line Organizer'

John Norris [John Norris' Hipster PDA Templates]

Meta Line Key

On the heels of Douglas’s wonderful DIY templates for the Hipster PDA, I’m now directed to these amazing templates from John Norris.

John’s got some very creative ideas at play here, including miniature versions of games like chess; a small world map with time zones; music staffs; semaphore code (semaphore code!); and a variety of other lightly-structured templates.

The most fascinating addition to the standard card is what he calls the “Meta Line Organizer” (how-to image)—a series of icons, fields, and fill-bubbles that run the vertical length of the card. They afford a fast, lightweight method for organizing and prioritizing your cards and then quickly identifying their purpose on the run. Really terrific stuff.

It’s funny—I was telling a reporter yesterday how the whole Hipster PDA phenomenon has been such an unlikely instance of “Stone Soup“—what started as this jokey reaction to excessive personal technology keeps evolving into something smarter and more creative that I ever imagined. People are making thoughtful, deliberate decisions about how they capture data on the go, and having a framework—even one as admittedly dopey as the HPDA— apparently has enabled some very creative, clever ideas.

Nice work, everybody, and especially: nice work, John!

[Link: Matt Peck]

Ed's picture

Merlin, et al: I join...

Merlin, et al: I join you in your amazement at the growth and interest in the Hipster PDA. Many of the ideas that I've seen are truly incredible in their creativity.

At the same time, I wonder if the spirit and goals of your original creation aren't actually thwarted by so much of this. After all, you clearly do not eschew technology per se, but simply inefficiency and overuse of technology, right? And, while many PDAs (and their suggested usage) take things way too far in this way, do you think that some of the efforts to do "HPDA" templates and ready-mades also go too far? It seems like jumping through hoop after hoop just to tweak some document into index-card size is, in fact, re-inventing the wheel; if you really need to regularly refer to a time-zone map, for instance, wouldn't it simply be better (more efficient, easier to maintain, etc.) to carry an electronic PDA? (Of course, if you don't really need that time-zone map, then there is little question about efficiency and the time it takes to shoehorn it onto a card...)

I completely agree with the spirit of the HPDA concept; I just wonder if things haven't gone way too far in some cases. As the mastermind behind this whole scheme, do you have any objective comments to make about this sort of contradiction?




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