While I try to do as much of my work as I can in plain text, one limitation that I run into is project management. I prefer a slightly more visual representation of where moving parts of my projects are while I'm working on them.
For that, I use a simple kanban board. While kanban boards are widely used in software development, manufacturing, and elsewhere they're also a great tool for personal projects.
On the open source side of the fence, you can turn to applications like WeKan or Nextcloud Deck to do the job. But what if you don't want to turn to the web and, instead, have a kanban board on your desktop?
The open source pickings in that area are a bit slim. While I found what looked to be a promising open source desktop kanban app, but I couldn't get it to run. Then I ran into Focalboard, created by the folks behind the Mattermost collaboration tool.
I spent a few weeks using Focalboard to manage a couple of projects. Let's dive in and find out what came of that.
You might recall a previous post in which I outlined the requirements for my ideal note taking application. In case you're wondering, I haven't found that particular tool yet. And, to be honest, I haven't been on an active hunt for it.
But in my drive to simplify and consolidate various things digital in my life, I now work with notes mostly on my desktop. That, in turn, recently drew me back to an application that I'd investigated in past.
Meet QOwnNotes. If you're familiar with it, QOwnNotes might seem like a strange choice for me — it packs more features than I need or use. But you can also make it as barebones or as complex as you need or want.
After I took QOwnNotes for a lengthy test drive, I came away with new appreciation for it. Let's jump in and see what I discovered.
Back in the old country, I had several physical dictionaries within reach of the desk at which I wrote. You know, for those times when I need to find or look up a word and not just because I thought they looked kind of impressive.
When I moved overseas, those dictionaries went to new homes. Since then, I haven't replaced those tomes. When I need a dictionary, I turn to the Linux command line and use dict. And, no, doing that isn't as geeky or techie as it seems.
Let's take a quick look at using dict to look up new and unfamiliar words.
My needs around staying organized are fairly simple. I use a digital calendar and a paper notebook to keep on top of what I need to do, where I need to be, and the like. That said, I like the idea of a simple, all-in-one tool. One that only packs a few features, but which does those few things well.
Two or three years ago, when I was using elementary OS as my main Linux distribution, I came across an application called Planner. At the time, I thought it wasn't all that bad a piece of software but it didn't pique my interest. When I heard a new version had been released, I decided to give it a peek.
I finally got around to doing that in the winter (in the southern hemisphere) of 2023. Let's jump into Planner and take it for a spin.
When Red Hat went on a redundancy spree a few months ago, one of the teams affected was the one behind Opensource.com. That left the community which had grown around the site in more than a bit of flux.
Thanks to the support of the Open Source Initiative, that community now has a new home: OpenSource.net. That site's in its early stages, but there's still quite a bit to learn there.
As a former Opensource.com correspondent, it's great to see the community find a new corner on the web. And I'm hoping that it grows and thrives. You can help make that happen by sharing your knowledge.
(Note that Opensource.com is still around but the site's not being updated. And there's no guarantee Red Hat will keep it running into the future.)