“We need to learn to live with the noise and tolerate the noise even when the noise is stupid, even when the noise is offensive, even when the noise is at times dangerous. Because no matter how noble the intent, it’s a demand for conformity that encourages people on all sides of a debate to police each other instead of argue and convince each other. And, ultimately, the cycle of attack and apology, of disagreement and boycott, will leave us with fewer and fewer people talking more and more about less and less.”—The Culture of Shut Up - Jon Lovett - The Atlantic
“It is of course possible that serifs or the lack of them have an effect on legibility, but it is very likely that they are so peripheral to the reading process that this effect is not even worth measuring”—
“The vision of “technology” as something you can buy according to a plan, then have delivered as if it were coming off a truck, flatters and relieves managers who have no idea and no interest in how this stuff works, but it’s also a breeding ground for disaster. The mismatch between technical competence and executive authority is at least as bad in government now as it was in media companies in the 1990s, but with much more at stake.”—» Healthcare.gov and the Gulf Between Planning and Reality Clay Shirky
My last post about this year’s “paper system” neglected to mention which pen(s) I use. Most people don’t care about pens, but I do.
For me, the deciding on the right pen depends upon what and where I’m writing. There are three “modes” in which I write things down. Each requires a different pen. Ok, “requires” might be a bit ridiculous, but still.
Jotting things down while out and about
If someone at the local pub mentions a great book they just read, I whip out my trusty Field Notes notebook, which is always at the ready in my back pocket. Also at the ready is the Poquito Stylus from Montverde. It’s so tiny I barely know it’s in my pocket. I’m still looking for something better, though. I prefer this to the usual Fisher Space Pen because the Space Pen requires two hands to operate. Removing and posting a cap is not something I want to be doing while trying to capture something quickly. Seen above with the Field Notes notebook.
Planning, scheduling, and taking notes
For nearly all writing tasks, I prefer the Montblanc Meisterstück rollerball. I’ve had mine for 15 years or so and it’s still my favorite. It’s beautiful. I love the way it writes, it feels great to the touch, and fits my hand perfectly. It’s the perfect pen. Seen above with the 2013 Hobonichi planner.
Journaling and letter writing
For “serious” writing, nothing beats a nice fountain pen. I’ve tried dozens of them and found I prefer the Pelican pens. The one I use is a Souverän Black-Blue M 400. I fill it with one of any number of fun inks. Writing with a fountain pen is a tactile and visual pleasure. Shown above with the 6”x9” Epica Leather Journal.
As my productivity system inches toward digital tools, my love for paper notebooks for capture and planning has not waned. I have a thing for notebooks and pens. This year, I’m going to continue using a Hobonichi paper planner along with a trusty Field Notes notebook in my back pocket. The Hobonichi has just the right combination of size, paper quality, and usability. And Field Notes are great for jotting things down on the go.
“Of course, digital devices shouldn’t be excused from the moral order — nothing should or could be. But too often discussions about technology use are conducted in bad faith, particularly when the detoxers and disconnectionists and digital-etiquette-police seem more interested in discussing the trivial differences of when and how one looks at the screen rather than the larger moral quandaries of what one is doing with the screen.”—The Disconnectionists
“Frankly, it’s this very sort of half-baked, yellow-ribbon-car-magnet, support-the-troops bullshit that has made the perpetuation of America’s commitment in Afghanistan as palatable as it’s been to a country of binge consumers unanimously ignorant to what’s actually going on out here.”—