It only takes a few seconds to write something down in a notebook, and look what it gets you. It gets you an immutable, permanent record of something in a cool, personally unique format. It produces a physical artifact that will last for generations.
For a few years, I recorded each movie I watched and each book I read in a large notebook…just one line for each entry. But, as often happens, I was sucked into doing it digitally instead because convenience or search or whatever. This is a shame because what do I get for having a text file or Roam graph with a bunch of movies listed? I get a boring, digital, ephemeral text file that doesn’t really exist anywhere as a thing.
I really want to have that thing. But I kind of also want a searchable, sharable record at the same time. So, I did some math.
Let’s say that it takes 2 whole minutes to go get the notebook, record a book or movie in it, and put the notebook back on the shelf. And let’s estimate that I read two books each month and watch 4 movies each week. That’s what, 18 entries per month. Assuming I enter each one as it happens, that’s 36 minutes per month. In reality, I probably enter everything all at once each week rather than one thing at a time. This knocks it down to maybe 10 or 15 minutes per month.
I think I can find an extra 15 minutes per month for such a lovely permanent record. And if I can find another 15 minutes I can record everything digitally as well, for when I want something to search.
Originally published at https://www.baty.net on February 2, 2021.