Personal Knowledge Management, Part 3: Tools and Technology
While most discussions of knowledge management focus on KM from an organizational perspective, personal KM practices are just as important – and something we have more control over on an individual level.
In the first post in this series, we talked about principles for personal KM and establishing a purpose. Some typical goals include: wanting to more easily re-use knowledge or information, decreasing the time it takes to find knowledge or information stored within a personal filing system, or doing a better job of applying what you've learned. These goals are achieved in vastly different ways, so the tips and tricks, workflows, or processes described here are only applicable to certain goals. The second post in the series looked at tips and tricks for personal workflows. In this last post, we'll focus on a few specific tools, technologies, and apps that can be helpful.
Tech and Tools to Streamline, Simplify, Automate, Improve Findability, and Offer Insight
When considering how we use technology and tools to support personal knowledge management efforts, we boiled it down to five key themes where technology can help the most: streamlining, simplifying, automating, improving findability, and using data to inform decisions. All of these areas closely intersect with processes and workflows, which makes sense -- as is the case with all technology in KM discussions, technology should enable knowledge management, not drive it.
Some of our favorite tools:
- ToDoist for keeping To Do lists organized and accessible in a meaningful way
- Toggl for keeping track of how time was spent
- Google Apps: Google Calendar and Gmail -- the best email and calendar programs out there
- Neat software, scanners, and system for organizing expenses
- RSS feeds and feed readers such as Feedly for harnessing the information overload