Recently I have taken into my head to treat the home screen on my phone aspirationally. You can’t look at it and automatically know the sort of man I am but you could potentially look at it and determine the sort of man I wish to be. The icons that decorate the very beginning page of my personal digital assistant let you see the things I think should be important to me where as some programs I feel like I use too much get hidden out of the way.
Since I haven’t posted in a while now would be a great time to do a little arm chair self analysis.
1. The search bar – Always at the top and ready for action. I am using the Arrow Launcher from Microsoft so it took me a bit to figure out how to switch it off Bing but the built in QR scanner is worth it.
2. Time and Weather Widget – I like having quick and easy access to the clock. Not only to know the time but also for setting alarms and the timer for the laundry.
3. Pocket – The death of google reader hit me hard and it took a while for me to find a replacement that made me happy. Newer automation websites and learning to use the Pocket API with Powershell have made consuming and sharing articles that much easier. In fact if you followed a link to this article it was probably because I shared it through Pocket.
4. Next Episode – I played with television social media and it was dumb. I don’t need to tell everyone else what I’m watching but I do like getting notifications that a brand new episode of Dr. Who recorded last night and that I have three episodes of The Flash sitting in my DVR.
5. Chrome – Most of my web use is search based but there are one or two sites that I have bookmarked like the next bus tracker for my commute.
6. Sketch and Pokemon Go – Smack dab in the middle of my home screen are the apps that my kids use. My daughter draws pictures a d my son catches Pokemon. I like to think it makes me a good Dad but I play with them too.
7. Camera – Going back to the automation, I have an app running in the background that loads all pictures I take into a folder on my computer and then a script on my computer that sorts them into folders by month. No fuss no muss.
8. iA Writer – This one is brand new. I was looking for a writing app that would interact with Dropbox. This one has the added bonus of being able to post to WordPress like I’m doing right now.
9. Goodreads – This one is perhaps more aspirational than I want it to be. The goal is to read more books. Still working on that.
10. Gmail/Google Calendar – I had old emails going back to 2005 in there. Backed it all up and cleaned out a lot of advertising. Then I updated my contacts and made sure I had birthdays for people.
11. Outlook/Teams – Yes. Work is a Microsoft shop so I need to stay connected with my colleagues.
There is some other background stuff that happens like running Facebook but that’s going to happen no matter what. Text messages are a swipe to the left and my work calendar is a swipe to the right.