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1320h, October 25th 2019

1320h, October 25th 2019 is a log. It was released on Oct 25, 2019.

Backstory: Starting about two years ago I began to get interested in owning my own data and writing online, and so started putting my care into my personal website. This led to me being introduced to the Emacs text-editor and the Org-mode text markup language, which has a lot of ways to do… all sorts of management of personal information, as well as writing and project management and… a lot. I view it, in many ways, as an operating system for working with the human-facing data held in a computer, rather than the operating system that works with the computer hardware.

I’ve dabbled with it in different ways since then, but then got interested in writing my own personal information server in Elisp. Then I got busy doing stuff outside, and realized I don’t really have the time to do that.

So I’m basically putting a hard limit on myself that my stack is Emacs, Org-mode, Ox-Hugo, and Hugo. (This unfortunately only lets me broadcast messages, not receive them, which will be a problem, but for now, I need to focus on communicating with “myself,” as it were: keeping better records for my own benefit.)

So, there’s some questions that I need to ask before I get started, and I’ll probably keep changing my answers to these as I go:

  1. What Org-mode features should I be using?
  2. How should I organize my Org-mode files?
  3. How should I organize the information within those files?

To answer the first question, I think I need to ask another one first: what sort of information do I want to track with Org-mode? Here’s some answers, in no particular order:

My writing and various other projects will exist in their own folders and files. I’d also like to start using more org-mode features within my writing. A big issue I’ve found with some features, like timeclocking, is that, well, two issues. There’s no immediate benefit to me clocking my time, since most of my work isn’t waged. All it does is help me know how long it takes for my own planning, but as is, it’s enough work I can get it all done, but not by much, and knowing exactly how many hours that is doesn’t change that.

Second, is that even if I cared more about the results, it’s hard to remember to use it consistently! At least, for me, especially because I still use a lot of software that isn’t Emacs. (I use my provider’s webmail client, and a web client for my microblogging, both of which I run inside the Epiphany graphical browser, which I also use for my general browsing.

So, a contact directory, a calendar, a reading log, and an inventory, are four types of data I wanna track with Org-mode.

Seems easy enough to just put them at ~/org/, ~/org/, and so on.

How should I organize the information within those files? It helps me to think of an Org-mode file as a collection of subtrees which exist in a hierarchy (that happen to also be subtrees).

That was gibberish. What I mean is that despite them all being “subtrees,” I view any tree except those containing content as just “a way to sort the meaningful subtree into a hierarchy.”

Maybe that was still gibberish. It might not matter.

So for the contact directory, there doesn’t need to be much hierarcheal categorization. Just, maybe alphabetical organization? And under that, a “card” (subtree) for each contact.

I need to refresh myself on


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