Am I A Geek Now?

And no, this hasn’t gotten anything to do with the fact that the app is named ‘GeekTool’! LOL

Brace yourself, this is a long story! But it’s got some nice pics and links, promise! 🙂

The story begins with me discovering, or should I say, re-discovering GTD by David Allen. I was first introduced to this system by my friend Rohi. Back then, I simply dismissed this out of hand as being a very silly thing… after all, who needed a system to actually get things done, right?


I soon realized that I needed a system to stay on top of things – especially as my work life and my mac life began to soar new heights of mis-management! So I started to follow the GTD Process in real earnest.

Typical to my nature, this meant I started to look for apps to help me Get Things Done! LOL. So there are quite a few apps out there – and be assured that I have tried them all. And then I stumbled on to a singularly simple method of managing my action items right here. (I had linked to the post in a post on my other blog). In any case, using the Mail app in tandem with the built in functionality of the iCal app combining it with the productivity that one can gain by using smart folders is truly amazing! I mean, it makes sense to use the apps that the Mac already comes equipped with – I paid for those apps when I bought the Mac, right? So, why should I spend some more money to buy yet another app which does the same thing, but in another interface.

But. And of course, there is a But.

I was still not able to add the new To Dos and Events into my calender just right off the bat – and so I downloaded and installed QuickSilver. And of course, it has a lot more bells and whistles, which means I don’t move my hands from the keyboard to open an app or to add a To Do or an Event or even to do some other fun things like do a Google Search! I can just key right through the stuff to get things started!

I even created my own apps for creating To Dos and Events using Apple’s Automator! And I added in some nice things into the workflow with Apple Scripts and Growl Notifications.

And of course, I can customize the entire experience – which is a Big Plus.

But. Still. I wasn’t satisfied.

I didn’t want to open an app to see my daily To Dos and Events. I just wanted to see them on the desktop.

Extreme customization is what the Mac experience is all about.

And there are people out there who really thrive on this.

And while wondering about this and that, I stumbled on to this post on LifeHacker about GeekTool.

And of course, I was inspired.

So I downloaded GeekTool. Then I found out this post here about iCalBuddy, which basically is a shell script for displaying your iCal To Dos and Events on the desktop via GeekTool. And then I searched some more and found some scripts here, and here and got inspired here, here and here to create a desktop that will show some interesting stuff on the desktop along with my To Dos and Events. And then I searched for some art – Google Image Search and Deviant Art being my primary sources.

And since I don’t have Photoshop or anything remotely interesting to work with for my images, I decided to give Keynote (the equivalent of PowerPoint) a whirl. And guess what, I did it!


Moleskin Image | Coffee Cup | Desktop Background | And other random images (the fountain pen and the ink spatters) which I cannot track down.

The result:

A Desktop which looks like this:

My GeekTool Desktop Final

So, at the end of all this geek-ery, how do I manage my workflow with GTD? Here is the low down…

Since I work via the Internet, and my Mac is my office, all of my work gets tracked via e-mail.

So every time I get an e-mail that needs attention right away (within 2 minutes), I reply to it right away.

Then, if there are messages that need some doing to get tackled, get flagged, and then either a related To Do or Event gets added to my list. In Mail, it is relatively simple, just do the two-finger tap to get the right-click menu which includes a link to create a New To Do or Event. I always set alarms that will go off at least 2 days before the due date so that if I have lost track of things, I can handle them. Mail and iCal are beautifully integrated. So when I add a To Do or an Event, they get synced right away. Automatically.

add note todo flag.pngproject note mail.png

smart folders mail.png

Oh, and I can also create a To Do from the Mail menu as well.

So, how do I keep track of the things that I need to do?

Every Project gets its own notes and they can have To Dos which sync across my Mac.

Then, I have configured some smart folders which automatically track some of my To Dos based on their Due Dates or Notes.

So with a glance at the sidebar, I can see what’s up.

But what of when I don’t have the Mail app open in front of me?

Simple – GeekTool has now enabled me to see my To Dos and Events and some other jazzy things right on my desktop!

(Notice the little Apple Logo in the coffee cup where I display my CPU and RAM stats – I am pretty proud of it!)

My GeekTool Desktop Final For Edits.png My GeekTool Desktop Final For Edits_2.png My GeekTool Desktop Final For Edits_3.png My GeekTool Desktop Final For Edits_4.png

Time Zones.png


shelf.png And of course, QuickSilver is also integrated into this workflow. Any important document finds its way onto my Shelf from where I can easily access it. And the shelf conveniently slides in and out of view from the desktop.

So after all this, all I do is get right down to it!


Just Get Things Done with Mail, iCal, QuickSilver and GeekTool.

Reality TV – The Modern Roman Circus

As I turned on the telly and flipped through the never-ending series of channels, I made a startling discovery.

Almost every other channel featured some kind of a Reality show.

And then it struck me – are we becoming like the Romans who came to watch the Circus so many years ago?

Typically, most reality television shows depict ‘real people’ going through different ‘real events’ in their lives. And while they are doing so, a camera crew follows them all over the place. And so do we – with our eyes glued to the television set – watching on like voyeurs.

The Romans did something similar to that in their time – they captured people, and made them fight with each other, or threw them to the lions to fight with them (armed or unarmed) and then gathered together to watch, often cheering their favorite competitor on!

Are we turning into Romans now? With certain creature comforts being taken for granted in the most middle-class lives of so many of us, we indulge in our latent voyeuristic tendencies to watch how people live their lives, while we sit and eat our popcorn. We see them fight with each other, engage in all kinds of daily activities and interact with their friends and family members – commenting on their lives, and often sending an SMS vote so that they do this or that.

Have we, in the midst of all our creature comforts, forgotten to live our own lives so that we can now watch on as others live theirs?

All of this makes me wonder just one thing: given the so-called advancement of the Roman civilization and of course, their obvious end (mainly due to excessive indulgences in all kinds of things), are we too, as a civilization, doomed for the same end?


Meanwhile, here is a neat video that talks about another perspective about Reality Shows.

Husband Material….

Read this comic on my RSS feed today and boy is it a hoot!

Where can I find a husband material guy like the one who asks this woman to marry him right now?

Yes, Yes, I know this comic is actually about the woman – but then in the end this fella still wants to marry her – in my world, that means he Rocks!
If anyone amongst you know of such a guy, please refer him to me for careful consideration!!

My Geeky Nerdy Life

These are a few things I think my parents should’ve read while I was growing up!


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5 Tips for Raising Your Girl Geek
By Natania Barron August 6, 2009 | 8:00 am | Categories: Everything Else, Science and Education

Photo: Girl Genius, Studio Foglio LLC
As geek parents, we often have rosy colored notions about our children growing up. We actually want them to be geeks. From the earliest of ages we dress them in WoW gear, teach them to quote Star Wars and wonder when is too early to start reading The Hobbit. We nurture them in the way of the Geek, hoping that, when the time comes for them to choose their path, they won’t stray far.

But being a geek kid isn’t easy; and being a geek girl might even be harder. Here are some things to keep in mind if you are raising a geek girl that might help her–and you–get through the school years.

The Book Factor Problem: My geekiness manifested, first and foremost, in books. At a very young age I had a proclivity for reading science-fiction and fantasy books. [From 5 Tips for Raising Your Girl Geek | GeekDad |]

Somehow, they never got to read this article, and see how I turned up!

Which overall is not such a bad deal… But hey! it could’ve been better!