Apps That Stay: Notational Velocity

nvALT

Today marks a sort of unusual anniversary for me. It was the day that I discovered what remains my favorite application, on any platform, of all time — Notational Velocity. I first started using it on this date back in 2005 — 8 years ago.

In fact, I first wrote about it just a few days after I downloaded it. And I have continued to use it, every day, ever since. I now use nvALT, which is Brett Terpstra’s wonderful fork of the original that includes all sorts of handy extra features.

That said, the original version would still be plenty fine for me regardless. A really great app.

Ready

If you can dream — and not make dreams your master
If you can think — and not make thoughts your aim
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same
– Rudyard Kipling, If

The GORUCK Challenge is likely the most physically difficult test most who face it will ever achieve. A team building event led by Special Forces veterans designed in part to simulate the sort of training and challenges they faced in their careers. You are required to wear a backpack — known as a "ruck" in military parlance— loaded with 6 bricks, a hydration bladder, and anything else one feels inclined to bring. In other words about 40-60 pounds. They advertise 8-10 hours over 15-20 miles. Every one I am aware of goes beyond that promise. They also advertise that they under-promise and over-deliver. Indeed.

I was supposed to take part in the Challenge last year but I broke two toes in training and had to simply shadow that class instead. I was really bummed at the time. Mainly because in the hour before I was injured was the first I had felt ready. And, this is the sort of event where the idea of ready has very deep and broad meanings.

The registration fee was transferable and I vowed to take part in the next one that was held here. That date is March 30th — less than a week from now. I met up earlier today for a practice ruck with some of my future class mates. We put in some good livin’ and started to really bond as a bunch. All of the months of training I have had leading up to this were put to the test. The running, the lifting, the dieting, and the sweat. Yet, even with all of that, today was the first time, this time, I finally felt what I was waiting to feel…

Ready.

Apps I’m Still Enjoying

I’m pretty tired and it has been a long day. Therefore, just a quick post of a few things that I’ve mentioned before but still am finding delightful.

  • Path— Still using Path to log many of my daily travels and life moments and share them with a small group of my close friends. It is the one place I feel safe posting almost anything.

  • 1Password — Specifically, the built in web browser in the iPad version of the app has been really helpful in a iety of ways. If I know I’m going to visit a website on the iPad mini and it will require I enter a password, credit card, or fill out some personal details, I don’t launch Mobile Safari. I go straight to 1Password.

  • Poster for iOS — I would not have been able to keep up this daily posting routine without it. Still a wonderful app for blog posting from an iOS device.

  • Day One — Been using this a lot more lately for capturing ideas as I’ve begun work on my next book. Especially love the quick capture menu bar widget in the desktop version. Been really handy. I also use Slogger to capture all my blog posts, social network updates, Pinboard links and Instapaper favorites. So, it is basically keeping an Internet travel log of sorts for me too. Really like this app.

  • Drafts — It’s like a Swiss Army knife for text. I’m a writer. Of course I love the hell out of it. And, like a Swiss Army knife, it is not my primary weapon. But it is the one I always I turn to in a pinch and it never fails to rise to the task with yet another obscure, yet useful, thing it can do.

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