More and more tools are being released which help you communicate with the wider world and my question always seems to be organizing which of the organizers I should be using and the best way of using them together (if there is such a thing!). What follows is a jumble of thoughts of these issues.

Some personal examples are:

My blog(s)
Google Reader
Amazon wishlist

Questions I ponder which span all these examples above:

Is there such a line as the personal/work divide anymore?
Is pooling everything all together into one place the solution?
Is using all these examples separately the solution?
Who is the solution for? Me, my friends, my readers? Actually, does it matter who the solution is for anymore?
Do other people really need (or want) to know my Amazon wishlist (etc) or do I just want quick access to it?
Can x do something that y can’t do already? Or does it just make it faster and quicker but with a bit of work, I could just use x and keep two things together in one place?

Wavering between one tool to rule them all and then back to individuality reigns

I’ve set up accounts on so many sites and then come back to tools which promise the best of everything all in one place – such as Netvibes or Google Reader – but I find myself using them for a while and then moving back to the individual sites.

A good example of this is our local news sites. It’s too much information overload to subscribe via Google Reader so I just load up their homepages and take a quick glance to see what’s their big and latest headlines every so often. Is there a quick tool which shows “what’s on the homepage” of a site right now?

Another example is twitter and Facebook status. Having twhirl or some other twitter client open all the time, there’s a constant flood of messages. My eyes glaze over and when I log out and turn it on again, there’s a ridiculous number of status updates that have flown by. Information overload. Is there a quick way to see one most latest status update for each of my contacts, in one place – a little like the most recent Facebook status list that you can see? Something I can take a quick glance at? I prefer Twitter because it’s exportable, it’s RSS and I can use it how I like but does it help me or just distract me?

Every so often, I give Netvibes or Google Desktop Sidebar a go. I find myself being given a limited number of tools and the gimicks/widgets wear off quickly. I don’t really need today’s weather, today’s quote, a photo slideshow, or how many unread emails I have. I end up scrapping these and going back to having multiple tabs open, and a bookmarks toolbar for quick access to everything.

I’ve tried Remember the Milk and other to-do lists but end up back with my paper diary that I can enjoy the feeling of crossing things off from and some important reminders on my phone.

Do you have any suggestions, similar ponderings or behaviours as me?

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