17 April 2013

Organize, Simplify, and Plan Your (School) Life with Workflowy

I very randomly stumbled upon a site called WorkFlowy the other day, and I've found it to be an essential part of my school life as far as organization, simplification, and planning are concerned.

In a nutshell, it's just a giant expandable and collapsible bullet list. (If you're like me, that's all you need to hear.)

Here's why I love this idea (I love bullet lists):
  • I've tried planning my courses and units on paper, but as soon as I have another assignment or lesson to insert in there, it starts getting really messy. WorkFlowy lets you easily insert new objects and reorganize bullets.
  • I've tried planning my courses and units in Word, but it becomes a gigantic document that isn't easily searched. WorkFlowy lets you collapse bullets you're not working on, providing an extremely clean, simplified workflow.
  • I'm constantly writing random ideas on little scraps of paper on my desk, that eventually I want to turn into lessons or assignments or whatever, but until that point they just cluttered my desk. With WorkFlowy, I just created a list under School called "Miscellaneous Ideas."
  • WorkFlowy lets you #tag objects and then filter with those tabs. So for my miscellaneous ideas, I can tag them with a course name. When I'm in the planning stage for that course, I can filter and see all of the random ideas I had the last time I taught it.
  • More on #tags, I can tag ideas as lessons or assignments or printables or by the software used, so next time around I can search every printable assignment and get it copied much earlier, so I'm more prepared.
  • They have iPhone, iPad, and Android apps, so wherever you are, you can jot down ideas so they're already organized.
  • (I just found this out) You can paste hyperlinks into your list (I specify 'hyper' because you can just click it to visit the site, you don't have to copy and paste the link).
  • You can star certain lists that you use most often, making them easier to get to.
  • It's searchable.
There are more features that I have yet to need or use, but might be interesting to others:
  • You can share individual lists for collaboration, and add @names to specify who is working on them.
  • You can use it as a to-do list and mark things as completed.
  • You can import and export bullet lists from/to text editors (apparently it works better with web-based editors).
It's free for fewer than 500 list items. But if you sign up through me (or someone else that has it), we both get another 250! So click here and we'll all be better off!

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