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Starting to Ideate the Idea Capture Device

I'm trying to come up with a creative way to capture all of my ideas, so I recently looked into using Python to read emails and create an idea capture machine. This got me thinking of the song John Henry, and how he worked so hard that he broke his poor heart. I'm now on a mission to find a way to capture my ideas and explore the world.

Exploring Creative Ways to Capture Ideas and Experience the World

By Michael Levin

Friday, January 20, 2023

It’s all about process and churn. You don’t have to preserve every bit of data, but you can kinda sorta try by keeping a reverse chronological blog format, i.e. a journal, as one of your various text files in your life. Capture everything there but don’t publish. Don’t know where to throw a thought that just occurred to you? Throw it in your private unpublished journal. You can always search it later with various means. But the thought is captured.

Journal not at hand? No problem. Email it to yourself. No phone or computer onhand? NP, jot it on your hand with a pen. No pen? Use the method of loci to associate that idea with an image of a place in your head that you know you’re going to think about again. In the first place, in the second place, and so on. Think through your places every once in awhile and see if you can recover the ideas to which you created synaptic neural links. In such a way you have several lines of defense to capture ideas.

Don’t not move forward in life over purity issues. If only this… if only that… artificial dependency #1 inserted due to fear, uncertainty and doubt. Artificial dependency #2 inserted for similar but different reasons. Lather, rinse, repeat, continue living in the town of your birth never knowing your favorite places and foods and joys and experiences on Earth. You’ve been given a friggn slot here on this material plain to do things of which the Angels can but dream. Take advantage of it. It’s not that everyone needs to be a bestlife travelista, but rather to try things. They can be local. You can stay in your local town, but at least travel far and wide vicariously in your mind by reading and otherwise interacting with the world and others.

Nobody’s told it to you enough yet in your tech career or in life, uniqueness is a thing. Precisely what sort of thing it is and of how much value is difficult to say, but much energy goes into determining the uniqueness of a thing.

Hmmm. I recently just looked at reading emails with Python. Idea capture machine. Jot it down, send it off, publish it here, lather, rinse, repeat. Such a system shouldn’t really litter up this published journal, but it could easily become a different page on the site. Or maybe just a single page of this blog, like maybe the very first post, always. Haha, wow, That’s unique. And no WebDev per se involved.

Oh, capture John Henry:

John Henry was a little baby, sitting on the his papa's knee
He picked up a hammer and little piece of steel
Said "Hammer's gonna be the death of me, Lord, Lord
Hammer's gonna be the death of me"

The captain said to John Henry
"Gonna bring that steam drill 'round
Gonna bring that sterm drill out on the job
Gonna whop that steel on down, Lord, Lord
Gonna whop that steel on down"

John Henry told his captain
"A man ain't nothing but a man
But before I let your steam drill beat me down
I'd die with a hammer in my hand, Lord, Lord
I'd die with a hammer in my hand"

John Henry said to his shaker
"Shaker, why don't you sing?
I'm throwin' thirty pounds from my hips on down
Just listen to that cold steel ring, Lord, Lord
Just listen to that cold steel ring"

John Henry said to his shaker
"Shaker, you'd better pray
'Cause if I miss that little piece of steel
Tomorrow be your buryin' day, Lord, Lord
Tomorrow be your buryin' day"

The shaker said to John Henry
"I think this mountain's cavin' in!"
John Henry said to his shaker, "Man
That ain't nothin' but my hammer suckin' wind!  Lord, Lord
That ain't nothin' but my hammer suckin' wind!"

Now the man that invented the steam drill
Thought he was mighty fine
But John Henry made fifteen feet
The steam drill only made nine, Lord, Lord
The steam drill only made nine

John Henry hammered in the mountains
His hammer was striking fire
But he worked so hard, he broke his poor heart
He laid down his hammer and he died, Lord, Lord
He laid down his hammer and he died

John Henry had a little woman
Her name was Polly Ann
John Henry took sick and went to his bed
Polly Ann drove steel like a man, Lord, Lord
Polly Ann drove steel like a man

John Henry had a little baby
You could hold him in the palm of your hand
The last words I heard that poor boy say
"My daddy was a steel driving man, Lord, Lord
My daddy was a steel driving man"

They took John Henry to the graveyard
And they buried him in the sand
And every locomotive comes a-roaring by
Says "There lies a steel-driving man, Lord, Lord
There lies a steel-driving man"

Well every Monday morning
When the bluebirds begin to sing
You can hear John Henry a mile or more
You can hear John Henry's hammer ring, Lord, Lord
You can hear John Henry's hammer ring