So since I am unique, OrgNote would have to be flexible enough.

Flexible enough for me, and flexible enough for others.

Hey my preferences might change later too… so it’s a good thing.

Interface with Evernote

One of my favorite iOS app is “Scannable” by EverNote.

It’s pretty gangsta.

I’m always impressed that no matter how bad the photo seems, the “scanned” document is clear as day.

Makes me want to interface with them on OrgNote.

Do What You Love

So I’m currently reading this book. “I Could Do Anything, If I Only Knew What It Was”

My second child, Benjamin Aart Van was born recently. Boy did I forget what it took to raise a newborn. Even less time now, since I have a toddler and a consulting practice to run.

I was having an existential crisis. I was asking questions like what’s the meaning of life. (Remember AR quote, quality of your life is direct proportion to the quality of the questions you ask yourself on a consistent basis)

I realized that wasn’t a question I could answer… so I asked myself what’s the meaning of My life? I realize that’s not something I can answer either? Isn’t your life defined after your death by the people who knew you?

I think the title of that book is true. We can do anything. If you have the freedom and liberty to read this blog post, you have the freedom to create your life.

What is it that you can’t not do?

I can’t not create an OrgNote or another Life Management System…

Also quick update, I just (5 mins ago) imported all pages/posts from my other half-failed blogs…

  • potentfuture.com
  • orgnote.com (threw up a blog after I took the old app down)
  • traffichabits.com
  • jsvegan.com
  • learnresponsive.com – no posts… but now redirects here as well.

Still on it’s own…

  • polyplatform.com – will prolly integrate this later
  • pomotrackr.com – I think I’m the only user 🙂


Ulysses is a damn nice application.

Reminds me of Keynote for Mac.

Pretty sweet.

It has nested folders, and MarkDown integrations. It’s nice and simple.

First impressions is that is has 90% of what I’m looking for.

After playing with it for the last how, a couple things I wish it does better with is:

1. Links should be clickable. Adding links seems way difficult. Maybe writers doesn’t use links, but web writers does…

2. Password protection. It’ll be nice if you can password protect certain folders / sheets.

Desktop App

Okay let’s explore what a Desktop App might look like.

You would still need a web at least a mobile app to access your data on the go.

Meaning it still needs to sync in the cloud somewhere. Out of our cloud options, DropBox, GoogleDrive and AmazonDrive, I wonder which ones has good API’s that can help facilitate this. (DropBox certainly does)

Also any of the three have built in Search api? Seems like Google should have this feature.


So the Desktop App has to sync to a cloud option, so that the mobile app can access the data.

Since storage prices keeps going down, you might someday be able to put everything in our phone’s hard drive.

However you can’t trust your Desktop to be on all the time like a cloud server. So you would still need something in the cloud.

Cloud options

What are the current cloud options available (affordable to consumers) today that’s secure?

DropBox – Consumer, syncs folders

Box – Business

Google Drive – Syncs, Consumer, seems like it works like DropBox.

Microsoft OneDrive – Seems pretty cool, consumer based, syncs, cheapest/as cheapest choice. Closely linked with Windows

Apple iCloud Drive – seems hardest to use, tight walled garden, most expensive, closely linked with OSX.


So far DropBox is the only viable option I think… because Google/Microsoft/Apple seems so tied into there ecosystem, I don’t trust they will take impartial care of my data.

You kind of want to know your data is safe, but not get bogged down by bloat, when you use any of the companies other products.

Let’s look at some more.


SpiderOak – interesting. Takes privacy, encryption seriously. Kind of worried that they are a small company, and that they might be too good at keeping your stuff private, they might get shut down. Also I’m worried that if your stuff is so locked down, if you forget your password, you might get locked out of your own stuff. This is probably an unwarranted concern, but a concern nonetheless.

Amazon Cloud Drive – seems pretty cool. Unlimited storage. (is this only for backup of your drives)

This makes me wonder, okay so top choices, DropBox, Google Drive, Amazon Drive, they basically backup/syncs your hard drive, so would a Desktop solution make sense?

Two things most needed

The two things that a great personal knowledge base (imho) should start with.

1. Security. Just the iron-clad certainty that your data/information is secure, and it’s not gonna get deleted/corrupted, made inusable.

This could mean backups of your data?

2. Accessibility. Your information/knowledge is no good if you can’t access it. It should be always accessible.

Because it needs to be accessible, I would think it needs to be in the cloud.

My Dream Personal Knowledge Base

So I’ve been working on my “personal knowledge base” for a long time.

OrgNote was previously named TreePim. Then it was named DigiPim.

Then it was named OrgNote. It was briefly named KnowledgePaper, and then VanilaFolder.

… it’s back to OrgNote.

I might never finish OrgNote. I don’t know. But I can’t help but to build and dream of this…

Perfect Knowledge Base.

My ideal personal knowledge base would consist of:

1. Journaling – gotta have ability to chronicle your thoughts.

2. Nested Notes – You should be able to organize your notes into knowledge.

3. Search

4. Encryption – Ideal, but hey with all the NSA spying, can anything really be secured?

5. Versioning – it’ll be sweet if you can turn back time. Reply your notes, edits & organizations…

6. Backed up – needless to say, you want it securely backed-up.

7. Easily Accessible – should have a web version. Mobile Apps. etc.

8. Unlimited Notes

You should be able to enter notes easily too. Maybe a bookmarklet? Evernote integration?

It should be beautifully designed as well.

Complete Knowledge

How to overcome information overload?

A notion that helped me restrain my obsessive thirst for new knowledge was the idea that, you already know everything you need to.

Your day is complete. You are not wanting. There are no gaps, there are no holes.

I think that’s why it’s so hard to “change” people. People are complete. Their understanding of the world is complete. You can’t change them.

This abundance mindset, will be more productive than a mindset of scarcity, of a mind that’s always searching.

Maybe we kid ourselves by learning, we are just getting shots of dopamine, when we should be in a trance of action.

So you already know everything you need to know. New knowledge simply alters some part of your life strategy, at most it’ll change some parts of it. At the end, it’ll still leave you complete though.

Anything that requires new knowledge, will be acquired justly. It will come to you easier because you are craving.

So just focus on the doing. Cause you already know what that is, and what you have to do next.