5 Quick & Simple Ways To Write Your Life Logs With These Minimalist Online Journals

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Shutterstock Diary   5 Quick & Simple Ways To Write Your Life Logs With These Minimalist Online JournalsIn the digital world, the difference between a journal, a diary, and a blog is fuzzy. A blog is meant to be shared with those around you. An online or offline journal is more personal. You can of course, remove the padlock and share it with the world but I guess most would like to keep it closer to the chest. My two penny opinion says that the difference mainly boils down to the degree of laziness. A blog needs more upkeep; an online personal journal can be used to record random and disjointed thoughts. But let’s look at it this way, the web gives us so many ways to connect with others and also with ourselves.

Writing a journal is like having a conversation with one’s own self. Treat a journal like a ‘digital wall’ to vent your feelings on or just use it as a ‘digital cupboard’ to store memories. In both cases, a journal is a priceless companion. Here are seven free online journals for your thoughts.

OhLife

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OhLife makes journal keeping dead easy by not asking you to come to their site every day. It simply sends you an email every night at 8pm asking you about your day. From the comfort of your inbox, you can type in your thoughts and send it forth like a regular email. That’s it! The easy-to-use and easy-to-keep philosophy tries to promote the habit of journal writing by dressing it up as an email activity.

You can choose to go to the site and read all your past entries when you feel like it. The posts get listed in chronological order and when it’s time for nostalgia, you can read them out to yourself.

I really like the minimalism of this free online journal and the ease with which I can keep up the journaling habit by not forcing myself to visit one more site at the end of a tiring day.

Memiary

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Memiary will make you believe that if you have had five interesting experiences the whole day, it has been a day worth recording for keeps. Memiary calls itself the weightless pocket diary. It is really that as all you have to is sign up and put down five thoughts for each day. You can even do it on the go if you have an iPhone. The five points a day really add up and you can keep them organized with tags (just add a #before any word and it turns into a tag).

It takes just about ten seconds to jot down five thoughts and the tag organization should really help when you add up all the memories. (See Directory mention)

MotoDiary

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MotoDiary is another simple journaling tool without any frills. It uses some HTML5 features for storage so it’s still not compatible with Firefox. It runs on Chrome, Safari, and IE. As you can see from the screenshot above, the interface is only about your words. MotoDiary is a highly secure application. The FAQ says that the encrypted key is stored locally and not sent to the server. The app auto-saves entries to the hard disk and uploads it to the server when online.

MotoDiary displays the potential of HTML5 in a utilitarian interface. (See Directory mention)

TweetPrivate

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Some people consider Twitter to be the closest thing to an instant free online journal. Why not? Twitter has become the medium for channeling all your rants and raves. TweetPrivate takes your Twitter habit and turns it inside out. Log in with your Twitter account, log your thoughts in 140 characters or less, but instead of tweeting it out, store it here and keep it private. These tweets can include pictures too. Later, you might choose to release these tweets and post them to Twitter’s public stream. By using TweetPrivate as your personal diary, you can archive your tweets and search them by date.

TweetPrivate is a cool application if you have fallen prey to Twitter (or SMS) and evolved into using only 140 characters or less.

Penzu

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Penzu comes with a few decorative features like an interface which resembles a lined notebook. The free account is limited but it serves its purpose adequately if you are not too into customization and tools. The free account gives you basic encryption with a password, photo uploads, plus sharing options with email and link. You can set up a notification to remind you to write every day.

The Penzu Pro account with all its features is appealing, but the free account is a quick fire journal tool that keeps things simple. You might grow to like the notebook style pages (see Directory mention).

If you are looking for customization and editing options, then you will be disappointed with these apps. For that I will always recommend Live Journal. But I believe when it comes to journaling or keeping an online diary, it’s best to start simple, keep it about the words and move on. For the making of a habit, these five online journal apps serve as a minimalist starting point. Your thoughts?

Image: Shutterstock

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26 Comments - Write a Comment

Reply

Gerard Sorme

Journaling gives MUCH in return. Being able to empty out your thoughts, worries, dreams, and hopes at the beginning or end of each day is very satisfying. It also leaves a record of your life. I refer back to my journals all the time to see what I was doing this time 3, 5, 10 years ago. It’s a tremendous resource in that regard.

What activity is worth our precious time will vary from one to another. I journal BECAUSE time is so short. I can’t imaging spending 5 minutes playing an interactive video game, but that’s me and obviously not many others – and that’s okay! To each our own. But never judge others on how they spend their time based on how you choose to spend yours.

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Tech Maish

I have never realize and nor get interested in writing dairies. My GF always do this, i will surely recommend these websites. Thanks for sharing saikat.

Saikat Basu

It’s a difficult habit to keep, but one which has enormous benefits. But I say, to each his own; some can keep the habit some can’t. Thanks for the comment :)

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Tech Maish

Actually time is now very precious and no one would like to spend it on a activity which gives nothing in return.

Gerard Sorme

Journaling gives MUCH in return. Being able to empty out your thoughts, worries, dreams, and hopes at the beginning or end of each day is very satisfying. It also leaves a record of your life. I refer back to my journals all the time to see what I was doing this time 3, 5, 10 years ago. It’s a tremendous resource in that regard.

What activity is worth our precious time will vary from one to another. I journal BECAUSE time is so short. I can’t imaging spending 5 minutes playing an interactive video game, but that’s me and obviously not many others – and that’s okay! To each our own. But never judge others on how they spend their time based on how you choose to spend yours.

Saikat Basu

We forget what ideas we might have had even a year back. But journaling preserves it. When we refer back to it, it takes on a different color; we can add more to it or discard it altogether. What you mentioned is spot on. Even 5 lines of thought is better than none at all.

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Gerard Sorme

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on how you don’t find anything of interest to share your thoughts about.

Reply

Anonymous

i’m already using ohlife and it works well but memiary looks very interesting too. thanks for the links!

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Elton Sites

Journals should not be mistaken as simple diaries. These online journals can also be used for work where you can write your everyday notes about your work or project.

Saikat Basu

From random thoughts to project notes, online journals can be useful tools. It can be put into use for work or life improvement if we take it seriously enough. It’s better than talking to oneself.

Reply

Hannes Grebin

http://www.30boxes.com is my tool of choice. I would go this way:
write your headline and then write the description in “()” brackets. This would tell 30boxes to include this as further describing text.
There are many more shortcuts in 30boxes to enhance your experience.

What I really like about it, is the fast overview over a month to keep track and revise the goals and thoughts that you have encountered so far, something like a success diary ;)

Reply

Hannes Grebin

http://www.30boxes.com is my tool of choice. I would go this way:
write your headline and then write the description in “()” brackets. This would tell 30boxes to include this as further describing text.
There are many more shortcuts in 30boxes to enhance your experience.

What I really like about it, is the fast overview over a month to keep track and revise the goals and thoughts that you have encountered so far, something like a success diary ;)

Reply

Dave Drager

Great post Saikat! Thank you!

Saikat Basu

Thanks Dave. Are you into journaling?

Dave Drager

No, but I would like to be. My long term (and short term) memory is pretty horrid, to the extent that my wife asks me things about something from not even a long time ago and I have no recollection of it. It would be great to go back and see even a short summary of every day so I could look back at my “Journal”.

Its one of those things that because of (perceived) lack of time, just never got into. But a short low-maintenance journal like one of these would be great to do this on.

Tina

You should try micro- or photo-blogging then. Just a sentence or a photo a day to stimulate your memories. I’ve been wanting to write that post for weeks, but so many awesome SIs from Ryan got in the way. ;)

Saikat Basu

Guess we all know what’s the first item on our New Year Resolution list is going to be:)

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Dave Drager

No, but I would like to be. My long term (and short term) memory is pretty horrid, to the extent that my wife asks me things about something from not even a long time ago and I have no recollection of it. It would be great to go back and see even a short summary of every day so I could look back at my “Journal”.

Its one of those things that because of (perceived) lack of time, just never got into. But a short low-maintenance journal like one of these would be great to do this on.

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Jmo562003

Awesome! I’m going to check these out asap. Love keeping a journal. Now I can have an electronic one and not have to worry about ever losing it.

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David Levine

OhLife FTW! The way they email you with an entry from yesterday, last week, or last month depending on how many entries you have is great. Also, by getting the daily emails, you stay motivated to keep writing.

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Aster

I’ve always been a bit leery of the (over?) simplified journaling services like these, because so many of them don’t seem to have a ready way for me to export everything out of them again, should they go belly-up….

Also, I’d recommend Dreamwidth over Livejournal nowadays (open source, non-corporate, and no advertising. I loves it, and I was with LJ back when it was still run by a guy named Brad.)

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Aster

I’ve always been a bit leery of the (over?) simplified journaling services like these, because so many of them don’t seem to have a ready way for me to export everything out of them again, should they go belly-up….

Also, I’d recommend Dreamwidth over Livejournal nowadays (open source, non-corporate, and no advertising. I loves it, and I was with LJ back when it was still run by a guy named Brad.)

Reply

Jaimedanielvenegas

Would you know which of these websites allow me to just publish my thoughts or entries via phone as a text message? I don;t have either an Iphone or Android with such app capabilities, but a regular phone that can send a basic text.

Reply

Jaimedanielvenegas

Would you know which of these websites allow me to just publish my thoughts or entries via phone as a text message?

Reply

Saikat Basu

Memiary has an iPhone app and you can use TweetPrivate with your mobile.

Reply

Loginbd

Very useful post…I have never known about those sites….But is it safe to keep your confidential memories at someone else database???????…..

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