The Work Diary
by Dwayne Phillips
Information is power. It can be good as well.
I keep a steno spiral notebook on my workspace. I jot the date for today and everything I do today. I have done this since sometime in 1986. That is … a bunch of years. I have all the notebooks, so if you want to know what I did in September of 1999, you should talk to someone about that desire. It may not be healthy, but I can tell you what I did that month.
Recently I read a writer call this a “work diary.” I guess that is a good name. I just call it a notebook, and on second thought “work diary” might be better.
Anyways, the writer finished the post with, “this is data and data is power.”
I call it information. I suppose “information is power.” I don’t like the “power” part, but I guess it fits. I find that the notebook on the workspace has saved me many troubles over many years. I could type these notes on the computer, but I’ve used many different computers over the years. I have no idea what kind of computer and software I used in 1987, but I am pretty sure that I would have lost those notes due to something not being compatible with something else.
These steno notebooks are “backwards compatible” and “forwards compatible” with whatever I am doing now. Yes, “you can’t grep trees” is still true (that means you can’t use a computer to search all the notebooks). Still, this all works pretty well.
The little notebook that you use everyday and keep forever is one of the few practices that I recommend to everyone.
Yes, that Sheldon character on the Big Bang Theory uses the black and white Composition Notebooks for everything and keeps them all. Same idea.