43 Folders

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Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.

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”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.


Why Are You Reading All That News?

When I wrote about my method for controlling RSS overload a couple weeks ago, 43 Folders user terceiro left a comment that put me in my place:

You’re feeling stress about your RSS feeds? Talk about self-created problems. The real solution to managing RSS feeds is to stop reading RSS feeds. It’s simple ... when a purely optional “convenience” technology is causing stress, it’s time to re-evaluate at a pretty fundamental level.

I read this and thrashed and spluttered like Yosemite Sam for a while before I admitted it: he's right. It is a self-created problem, and I need to understand what makes me feel the need to consume the equivalent of a Carnegie library every day, instead of just finding a more efficient way to choke it down.

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gDocs and Apple would taste great together

I've become an ardent Google Documents fan over the past few months -- especially as its support for Safari has improved (didn't say perfect; just improved). I use it for collaborating with clients and 43f guest authors, as well as for managing small projects and keeping various small teams organized. Personally, I find it simpler than a wiki and a lot more powerful than using a static .doc.

My favorite use right now is to use a single shared document as a common space that 4 or 5 people have access to and that they can use to give each other to-dos, ask questions, etc. I know stuff like Basecamp does this better and certainly with more sophisticated features, but I'm really attracted to the simplicity of the one-document approach -- especially for informal, remote teams.

I think my gDocs cincher was the first time that it occurred to me to see if I could even look at my documents on my iPhone; I was gob-smacked to see that it actually worked. Obviously it's not optimal for doing lots of editing, but you can see and perfunctorily edit your documents without a laptop, and that's just pretty mind-blowing to me.

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An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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This is an essay about family, priorities, and Shakey’s Pizza, and it’s probably the best thing he’s written. »

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This is the video of Merlin’s keynote at Webstock 2011. The one where he cried. You should watch it. »