| March 24, 2011 4:50 pm

Yes, I am still hard at work on the book. For this reason, I am trying to keep my head down and my attention on task. I’m also making good progress. Unimportant minutaie have been but out, sections have been merged, and it is generally more presentable. In the process of editing, though, I’ve come across a bevy of awesome tips and tricks that don’t really have a home. Up till now, they’ve lived in the draft because they might be of nominal interest to writers.

Unfortunately, part of cleaning things up means that you have to throw some stuff away (or at least store it in another place until it might be of use again). For that reason, these tips are being removed. They either don’t fit in the book or make the text too long. But since there are quite a number of them, and they’re generally cool, I thought that I would start a new category on this website. For that reason, you’ll notice that there is now a “Lifehacks” option in the category bar.

This will be the home of any currently unaffiliated tips and tricks.

In case you’re not familiar with the concept of a Lifehack (and the truly awesome website, Lifehacker), here’s a quick introduction from the book, “Upgrade Your Life.”

Every day, you have dozens of opportunities to get work done faster, smarter, and more efficiently – with the right shortcuts. Contrary to what some “gurus” will tell you, there’s no single, life-changing secret to working less and living more. The reality is that small changes practiced over time yield big results. There are hundreds of simple techniques and small adjustments you can make to the way you work that will help you get done and out the door with a clear mind and a clean state.

Which is where the idea of “hacks” or clever tricks come into it … Contrary to the popular misuse of the term “hacker” to denote a computer criminal, a hacker is someone who solves a problem in a clever or nonobvious way. A life hack is a workaround or shortcut that overcomes the everyday difficulties of the modern worker. A lifehacker uses clever tech tricks to get her work done.

In a way, you might say that all forms of technology first started out as “lifehacks.” After all, most items – from the development of language (lost in the mists of time) to the refinement of the wheel – usually have their roots in a common frustration or challenge. It only became world changing after the marketing people got behind it – and generally started lying about what the tech could do.

But … I digress.

I hope that you enjoy this new category of posts, find them interesting, and … yes … even life changing. Because the first entries came from the book, they will stay close its subject matter — using technology to write and spread ideas more effectively. Over time, though, others might be of interest for photographers or designers. You’ll find tips for Windows users, Mac zealots, and Linux people. There will even be some for technical novices and others for wizards and the high priesthood.

Hopefully, it will be a bit like a buffet. No one person will use them all, but you can browse the options and pick those up which will help you. If they’re not helpful, you can just leave them. This buffet, though, has one distinct advantage: no one will get sick from overeating.

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