Hack 8. Annotate Everything
Do you ever have trouble remembering what To Do items or addresses mean on your PDA? Here are some tips that will make sure that never happens again.
It is easy to jot down a phone number or give yourself an item to do without including enough information to understand it later. Using the annotation tools (notes for To Do items, notes and custom fields for addresses) can eliminate this problem, if you annotate well. Here are the built-in Palm applications that can be annotated:
The most important question to ask is why. Why are you writing down this phone number? Why do you need this To Do item? If you can articulate why, then add the reason as an annotation. You can also ask why again to digdeeper for the underlying reason. When you find the underlying reason, then you can add that as another annotation. For an example of additional details for an address, see Figure 1-15.
Figure 1-15. Additional information for an address
Describing how you are going to accomplish your To Do items is another useful type of annotation. For example, if your To Do item is to bake a cake, then the annotation might list the recipe. This is useful if you have an idea about how to do somethingcapture it so that the idea will be handy when you start in on your task.
Try to think about how long you will need to remember this information. If you are jotting down tasks for today, then you may not need a lot of explanation. If you are planning things months in advance, however, then you may need to put more detail into the annotations so that you remember exactly what you need to do when the time comes. You can see an example in Figure 1-16.
These ideas should get you started, but remember that annotations need to be useful to you. It is easy to add items to your Palm device without thinking ahead. A little bit of planning and adding an annotation can save you a lot of time later when you are trying to figure out what you meant.
Figure 1-16. To Do List showing how to accomplish a task