the simplest possible journal
2c9f5734 — Ben Sima 2 years ago
Print the correct date when entry is not found
b5c6a1a5 — Ben Sima 2 years ago
Tweak example.conf
35e41cad — Ben Sima 2 years ago
Fix help message


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the simplest possible journal.


$ git clone ~/jour
$ cd jour
$ sudo make install
$ jour --help

I've kept paper journals, digital journals in evernote and wordpress, etc. I've learned not to trust digital journals because the formats change, or I lose the data in the cloud somewhere. The only digital journal I trust nowadays is my own collection of text files, stored in a git repo on my own server.

In any case, the point of this very small CLI program is to show just how simple a journal can be. Personally I use this weekly for diary-like entries and saving links or thoughts while I'm working. I also keep a few paper journals around for less-structured notes, mobile notes (I've never found a good note-taking app for phones), or random sketching.

The point of this isn’t to be a generally useful tool for everyone. Rather, it’s just to show that something like this is super simple, and you shouldn’t look for a fancy tool to help you keep a journal. Just use the simplest thing that gets the job done. This script could also be a shell script or a few lines of vimscript/elisp, but jour works for me so I share it :)

Another great thing for notetaking: Ryan Holiday's notecard system, which ends up resembling a relational database when taken to the extreme (see the Robert Greene blockquote in that link).