Maybe you can relate?
We emailed constantly throughout the week: “What about this route?”, “Want to go here this weekend?”, “Have you seen this recent trip report?”. Our email threads were really long by the end of each week, and Friday night we would scroll through everything and try to remember which pieces of information would be worth bringing with us. The process of pulling out what we thought was relevant and printing typically took over an hour. In the transition seasons it took longer because we wanted to find the latest information on road and trail conditions. And when we hadn’t decided on where we were going, it took even longer because we still had a few options to pick through.
After about a year of this routine, we wanted a better solution for tying all of this information together. There were plenty of crowd-sourced content sites for each activity, but managing lists and publishing content on all of them was overwhelming. We could have started a blog, but we weren’t into sharing the story aspect of our adventures. Essentially, we wanted a digital journal that would help us save useful information and our lessons learned. That way, if we went back again we could be successful or if a friend asked for our notes we could provide good detail.
We started to use Google Docs. It was great because it allowed us to collaborate. The problem was it felt too formal, consistent formatting took extra effort, and file organization was a pain. In the end, we only ended up using it for big outings and we still felt like there had to be a better way.
We’ve spent the last year trying to build that “better way”. Betaknot is in beta. It’s a planning and recording tool for your life experiences. Here are some examples of how you could use Betaknot to prepare for what’s next or remember what matters.