Need some help getting organized?

Whether you’re committed to analog or do everything on your mobile phone, we’ve curated a list of some of our favorite task management tools to help you get your bit together
01 September 2020
time management

Organizational software for the digital diehards:

Trello: Do you identify as a "visual learner?" You might like Trello. This Kanban-style task management software helps visualize your projects and goals, from small daily tasks to big multiyear projects. (Freemium model)

Evernote: This cloud-based service will help you manage tasks, categorize your lists, take notes, file your receipts, and keep it all neatly organized. (Freemium model)

ClickUp: A cloud-based collaboration and project management tool that organizes your projects using lists, Kanban boards, tags, and calendars. Assign tasks to team members and set due dates. We use this software in the SPIE Communications office and are impressed with the flexibility and ease of use. (Freemium model)

Classic tools for the old schools:

Panda Planner: More than a daily diary, the pages of this planner are designed to help you reach personal and professional goals by setting weekly priorities, creating daily tasks, outlining upcoming projects, and planning for next week. The company claims the planner is designed on principles from psychology and neuroscience, and we love science. ($20)

PILOT FriXion erasable gel pens: These pens have smooth, even ink flow, come in lots of colors, and they're erasable. ($5 for pack of three)

Hybrid hacks:

Rocketbook Panda Planner: For those who like to handwrite their lists, but see the benefits of digital archives and organization, Rocketbook is the answer. This planner is very similar to the Panda Planner above, but the plasticized pages can be wiped off and reused, week after week. A QR code at the bottom of each page lets you quickly scan and digitally archive your lists, notes, goals, and plans to all of the major cloud storage platforms, including Slack, Trello, OneDrive, Dropbox, Evernote, Google Drive, email... ($35)

reMarkable: You can read on it, write on it, and sketch on it with the included stylus, and save everything to the cloud. Use it to annotate scientific papers, sketch diagrams, and set your weekly goals. This e-ink tablet has handwriting recognition in 33 different languages and can convert your chicken scratches into Helvetica for later editing online. Warning: the hefty price tag may be prohibitive. ($299)

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