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Going Paperless: Preferences first

In order to make sure I’ll actually use (and keep using!) my paperless system, I figured out I need to start defining the setup “backwards”. Using MacSparky‘s 3 layer structure that would be backwards from use to capture:

  1. Start with how I like to use my documents
  2. Derive the best fitting tools and workflows to process the files
  3. Make sure my capture machinery supports these workflows

So I’ve spent a day on tackling question #1 and here’s my outcome:

For me all depends on the right mix of security and convenience.

Security is relevant on the interwebs as much as I don’t want to write my tax statements on a blanket and flag it from my balcony. Without convenience I know I won’t keep to my workflows. Unfortunately nice convenience all too often goes with loss of security and vice versa.

Hence I decided for 3 levels of security and try to find the most convenient ways to handle these with software and/or services.

  • Level 1 = High Security = Stuff related to identity and/or money, legal data, recipe of Granny’s apple pie, etc.
  • Level 2 = Casual Security = If anyone was capable of breaking this security level they would know more attractive targets than stealing my – ahm – administrational correspondence with my landlord, etc.
  • Level 3 = No Worries = Groceries lists, recipes (other than Granny’s…), manuals, notes on planned vacation,etc.

So what would be convenient? My general requirements are:

  • Accessibility from my Mac and iOS devices
  • Reliable, automatic sync between all instances
  • Easy adding, using and forwarding of data/documents

So for each level of security I must now find a tool that delivers to this level of convenience. Anything below is not enough. Got some suspects on my mind and will examine. Stay tuned.

I’d love to hear if anyone has different perspectives on this – just use the comments.

3 Comments Post a comment
  1. I actually need to differentiate between personal and client levels, resulting in different tools.

    L1 Personal: 1Password.
    L2 Personal: Boxcryptor on Dropbox / Evernote
    L3 Personal: Dropbox / Evernote

    L1 Client: Only clients server, nothing resides with me locally.
    L2 Client: Only on my encrypted hard disk, synched using Boxcryptor (though I am thinking about switching this to using my own servers as a transport medium instead of dropbox).
    L3 Client: Does not really exist / on github (for source code) / Evernote

    20. November 2012
    • Boxcryptor reads great. Will definitly look into this asap. Thanks for the hint, Malte!

      20. November 2012

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