Next time you want to research on something…

Before jump to google, try the following places first — you may be able to find higher quality stuff easier:

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When you need inspiration for something

  1. Meditate
  2. Search on the web and see how other people, particularly professionals, do similar things. Key words for search: <your topic>, profile, sample, template, … etc.

For example, if you need some inspiration on logo design, here are 10 great sources to browse through: top-sources-logo-design-inspiration

iWantSandy: The Email Reminder Service

Update again (2010.12.03):  LetterMeLater.com sound like a good replacement. 🙂

Update: Too bad this service is no longer available. If any of you know of a similar service, I’d be really happy to hear about it.

The original note below is kept only for the purpose of serving as reference when looking for alternative services — on what functionalities are desired.

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iWantSandy is among the best (Email) Reminder Services that I found so far.

Signup at iWantSandy.com, you will receive a welcome message that contains your own personal Sandy-email address. Then you can email to or cc to that special address as if you were writing to a real person, give remind/remember instructions on email body or subject line like the examples below. (When you cc Sandy on a message, begin any message you want Sandy’s attention with “Sandy, remind/remember…”). In turn, you will get reminded through email or text-message at your specified time or, if not specified, 15 minutes before the scheduled time or 7am on the day of the event.

Examples of instruct Sandy, your virtual “personal assistant”:

  • Remind me to move my car in 10 minutes
  • Remind me about my Yoga class on Tuesday, 8-9am @weekly
  • Remember Patricia Jenter, 503-555-1212 @momsgroup
  • Remind us to call Mom on her birthday on 9/16/07 @yearly @birthday
  • Remind me to call Susan at 555-1212 during my commute at 7:30am @sms
  • Remember to replace the back-porch lightbulb @todo @reply
  • Remember Pat’s wife’s name is Christine
  • Remind me I have a Marketing meeting on 3/14 at 1-2pm
  • Remember update project waterfall @todo, @”project x”
  • Remember Susan Wu susan@example.com @school
  • List Example: Remember groceries * eggs * butter * cheese

Sandy understands these tags automatically: todo, done, daily, bidaily, weekends, weekdays, weekly, biweekly, monthly, bimonthly, quarterly, yearly, biyearly. Meanwhile, Sandy treats everything you put behind the “@” sign on your instruction to her your customized “tags”, and can organize your reminders accordingly.

Specify exactly when you’d like a reminder sent:

  • Remember my marketing meeting at 4pm tomorrow @reminder at 2pm tomorrow.
  • Remind me to stop by the store at 6pm @reminder 30 minutes before.
  • Remind me to pick up a card for Susan’s birthday on Monday @reminder tomorrow afternoon @birthday.

Add or remove things from a list: ” update +* cheese”, or “update -* milk “.

Examples of update the current occurrence of a repeating event: “update tomorrow”; “update #1 4-6pm”; or “update #1 @done”. Examples of update all future occurrences of a repeating event: “update tomorrow @weekly”, “update #1 4-6pm @monthly”, “update #1 @done @daily”.

Forget (delete) something: “forget”, “forget #1,4”, “forget @weekly”, “forget #1 @monthly”.

Look something up:

  • lookup Frank
  • lookup appointments
  • lookup this week’s to-dos

Sandy understands all common expression of time, e.g.: Date ranges (May 14-16; 10/14-10/22), Time ranges (1-4pm; 8am-5pm), even Time zones (4pm Europe/London; 5/1 7am PDT-2pm EDT; noon GMT+10).

Need an entire message/email to be send to you at specified time? Just forward the message to Sandy and add a reminder to the subject or body of the message like: “Sandy, remind me to follow up on Richard’s question in 4 days”,or “Subject: Remind me in 2 days re: Whatever the original message subject”.

Sandy - your free personal email assistant

Get help, email Sandy with the word “help”.

Write a book with this web-service

Here is a website that you can write a book with, alone or together with friends: http://springnote.com

The site seems provide good features for working privately and/or internally within a team, but not enough customization for building a public site with — for example, it has only one color for private notebook (blue) and one color for group notebook (brown).