Keeping a work notebook

There has been some discussion on HN of using a logbook or notebook. I’ve used a work notebook on paper for about 20 years. Here are the ones from the last 8 years (minus the one I’m currently using):

1-notebooks

Years ago Red Hat even had their own branded notebooks. I nicked one from the office supply cabinet and they seem to have stopped making them:

2-redhat.jpg

The older books had blank pages. These notes from 2010 record a list of bugs (tick marks for done/fixed items) and the initial design of guestfs-browser:

3-bugs

Unfortunately unlined pages don’t work well for me because I have pretty terrible handwriting. I’ve moved to using lined notebooks now as you can see by comparing these two pages from 2011 and 2014 respectively:

My ideal notebook is the Oxford Black n’ Red A5 Matt Casebound Hardback Notebook, Ruled 192 Pages, and my ideal pen is the UM-153S Signo Impact Gel Pen:

6-drawings.jpg

Most of the pages are scribbled notes from meetings. If you saw me furiously scribbling at the KVM Forum last month, then this is what I was writing.

7-kvm-forum

I find it really helpful to remember the contents of meetings and what to do. Asterisks mean ideas for future research or work. Ticks are items which have been done.

The number of doodles is not necessarily related to the boredom in the meeting!

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1 Comment

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One response to “Keeping a work notebook

  1. Stefan Hajnoczi

    I use a notebook and a paper todo pad. The todo pad gets used every day. I write in the notepad when I want to think through designs or brainstorm projects.

    Drawing and writing feels more immediate to me than using a computer or touchscreen device. It doesn’t interrupt thinking and flow.

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