This, and several other recent and forthcoming blog posts, have been lying in the drafts folder of my blog writing software (MarsEdit) for a while (some for more than 4 years…). I am currently going through the drafts one by one, deleting most of them, but also posting a few. Here is one I started writing back in 2009:
Alex Payne has published a list of rules for computing happiness. I don’t agree with all of them, but many of them resonate with my own thoughts. Here is a condensed list, based on the things I find most important:
- Use as little software as possible.
- Use software that does one thing well, do not use software that does many things poorly.
- Do not use software that must sync over the internet to function.
- Use a plain text editor that you know well. Not a word processor, a plain text editor.
- Do not use software that’s unmaintained.
- Pay for software that’s worth paying for, but only after evaluating it for no less than two weeks.
- Keep as much as possible in plain text. Not Word or Pages documents, plain text.
- For tasks that plain text doesn’t fit, store documents in an open standard file format if possible.
Particularly the last ones, about using plain text files rather than a bunch of proprietary formats, is something I have been more concerned about recently.