Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Creative Tools?

I recently read this on a blog I had no business reading: Slaw: Canada's only online magazine. The blog entry is on Scapple, and the piece of wisdom at the end that caught my eye was expressed in "lawyerese". Here it is: "Software such as Scapple and Scrivener can do nothing without being driven by a creative person such as a lawyer." I agree: software programs are tools; like all tools, they don't do anything by themselves. It's the person who uses them who does or does not accomplish something by their means.

There are better and worse tools. There are tools that enable you to do things you could not do without them, but even with them it is in the end the person who uses them who is decisive.

This also holds for note-taking. There are too many people who believe that, if only they had the right tool they would be able to create great things. We should remember that it remains up to us create whatever we create, and that the tools are to a large extent incidental. Often, good enough is good enough, and the search for new and better is just a diversion. Some people who should know call it "crimping."

I probably said this before: There is nothing wrong with diversions per se. Diversion may be wrong if it becomes a substitute for work, though some people's work is about diversion itself.

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