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Personal Information Management (PIM) can be understood in a narrower sense (Calendar, Todos, Contacs) or in a very broad sense which I do prefer: it is the art of organizing yourself and your data.

I don't even limit PIM to digital data. I've started loving PIM before I was aware of its existence: I was the one in school who was designing and optimizing his Filofax paper sheets, who knew why the previous twenty marks (and their average) were not optimal, when a teacher is going to ask me to summarize the previous lecture by maintaining statistics, and so forth.

So I am an organizer freak and I am proud of it.

For a couple of years I was lucky do be able to do basic research on PIM topics and I wrote my PhD thesis I am very proud of.

In my spare time, I optimize my personal workflows, write little helper tools, help others to work more efficient, look for the best tools out there, have more fun with the tools we have to use, learn from the experience of others, give talks about PIM. This is what I love, this is what I do for fun.

Since a couple of years, I teach PIM in a lecture at the St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences. My students are surprised, how inefficient they were doing even «common» things like handling email, managing files like photographs on your computer, or searching for information. It is so rewarding to see students realizing how much improvement is possible with some background-knowledge and a few hints here or there.

I hereby claim that I am able to save you at least twenty minutes of your computer time a day just by looking over your shoulder and suggesting more advanced tools, better methods, and efficient workflows. Multiply this with your computer-life and you get a small glimpse what it is possible. However, it's still your decision if you want to use this extra-time to get more stuff done or if you want to enjoy more spare time instead. ;-)

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You might also check out my articles on privacy, quantified self, security, and surveillance.


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