Whiteboard + Easel LOVE IT!!!

Posted by RichD | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 16-03-2012

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Well I love whiteboards in general. I find them perfect for quick brainstorming, making ongoing lists and ToDos, mindmapping, and just general catch-alls for information and planning. I have one on my wall at work, but at home there is really no place to have a permanent board. Besides not having an attractive place to mount one the wall, I rarely work in the same room twice. This is where the combination of the whiteboard and an easel comes in.

Having a small, portable easel to set up a whiteboard is probably the handiest thing I have come across in a quite some time. No matter where I am (even out on the patio) I can set up the white board and get to work generating ideas or mapping our a project. Not only is it portable but there are other convenient properties. For instance you aren’t stuck with one format to work with. Mindmapping works best in landscape for me, but if I want to make a list, I can just flip the board around and, voila, instant portrait format. Not just format, but size. I have several whiteboards from large to small. I can swap them out as needed. And several whiteboards plus several easels makes a temporary brainstorming nest!

One tip, I found that small, portable, folding easels are quite a bit cheaper from an art supply store than from an office store.

BTW you can expect the next few posts to concern whiteboard hacks.

Dragon Naturally Speaking —A Game Changer!

Posted by RichD | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 12-03-2012

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Yes, I know.  I am kind of hit and miss on my posting to this blog.  I have had a lot of internet issues and computer issues and just a general lack of motivation for posting.  But now I am seeing that not only are people reading the blog but I an FINALLY getting some comments on the posts.

I have posted before on using the Dragon Dictate app on my iPhone.  I still love it.  Now the apps for Dragon have gone even further.  Nuance is producing apps that working in conjunction with the latest version of their speech recognition software (v. 11.5).  Now you can use your iPhone as a microphone for dictating to your computer or even record on the go and have DNS transcribe everything later for you!

 

 

 

After reading about these amazing apps I took another look at the full computer software.  I own DNS v. 9.  I will it admit it is pretty good.  It doesn’t take nearly the training the previous versions did to recognize your voice.  It’s pretty easy to learn and it’s no hassle at all to set up.  And although it doesn’t support the previously mentioned iPhone apps, I can’t justify buying a new version of the software until I am well versed in the habit of using the one I have.

I recently installed version 9 on my laptop and have been making myself use it as often as possible.  I am writing blog posts, emails, and even using it in conjunction with Evernote to keep my diary for this year.

As I see it, utilizing DNS helps in several ways:

• It lets me be much more productive.  Dictating in DNS is about 3 times as fast as typing.
• It helps me to form thoughts better.  Speaking is a LOT different than typing.  It forces me to think more clearly.  Not so much editing.
• Its great practice for public speaking as well as training for maybe someday putting out my own podcast.
• It helps me “write like I speak”, because, let’s face it,  I am speaking not writing.
• Its also MUCH easier to lounge about in bed dictating than it is to type in the bed.  And to that end it will be a great boon when I get the latest version and I am no longer tethered to the laptop at all.  I can get my ideas down while taking a walk or folding the laundry.

So 2012 is the year I really focus on being prolific and I think that getting comfortable with Dragon Naturally speaking will be a big help in that goal.