|Pic from Google. Designed by Patrick Ng.|
In the struggle to find better and better ways to keep track of appointments and have an easier glance at the time distribution of the day, some rather curious "contraptions" have been designed by very, very ingenious people. One of them is the Chronodex, whom I believe is Patrick Ng. So what is the Chronodex? Umm... it's the thing you can see there at the left. "But what is that?" That's where the fun starts! ^_^
Based on the idea of a clockface (you know, the old fashioned ones you see at different institutions, with three little sticks going round and round?), and it offers you a view of your day's activities at one glance. The way it works is as follows:
1. First, don't let the odd shape of "spikes" confuse you. No hour is "more important" than another. What it does is basically "mark" three concentric circles around the full circle at the core. It basically shows a 12 hour day, from 9h to 21h (or 9 am to 9 pm). The creator kept within the core 6h, 7h and 8h, but the idea is that people don't really use those hours (so much), however, if you need them you can use them too. The chronodex is actually really flexible, and easy to adapt to your schedule and your needs.
|Pic found through Google Search|
|Awesome but not mine. Pic found through Google.|
|Pic found through Google.|
The concentric circles the spikes create also allow you to plan or keep track of simultaneous things. For instance, you could shade in a friend or a relative's program ("yoga from 9 to 12") in one circle, and in another you add the tasks you and your friends/family have to complete to prepare the surprise party you are planning. And stuff like that happen often! Make sure you finish homework and send it while the teacher is occupied with another class, or the extra time you have to finish a project at the office, because the boss will be busy at a meeting from 2 to 4. Or stuff as important like mark in that TV show you can't miss, so you remember to set the recorder!
Honestly, the more you think about it, the more you wonder how come you ever managed to organize your life with a linear planner.
|Pic found through Google. Design of Kent from Oz.|
The beauty of Chronodex is that it drives people to think in a different way, but also to be creative. Kent from Oz, an Australian guy, took the Chronodex and designed his own version, taking out the spikes and creating an 18 hour spiral. The principle is the same, but this is a bit better for people with longer schedules. It's visually less "architectural", to call it someway, and it has the advantage of giving you an even flow through the 18 hours, as you don't have to break into a.m. and p.m. circles.
In this Chronodex, your day starts at 6h and ends at midnight, but additional hours can be drawn into as needed. Also, the simultaneous activities can be marked in simply by dividing the blocks in any way you prefer.
I've started experimenting with this system, and after the initial struggle, it has pretty much caught on me. I made myself a test page for my filofax fitting both types of Chronodexes on a week-on-two-pages format, and also checking three positions on the day slots: left, center and right. The central position is pretty much the best, though that eliminates my task section. From this test page some handmade Chronodexes have started spilling on ym regular pages, drawn all on the "appointment side" of the slots (and killing the task side), and by doing so my own Chronodexes have morphed to my own version.
|Original picture, except from the small element pics on the corners.|
It's a rather simplified version yet with two concentric circles with an inner a.m. and an outer p.m. disc. The point of it was to allow the potential use of a 24 hour Chronodex (by drawing in with plenty of space the missing time slots). Not like you'd use them all the time - which is why they aren't drawn into it permanently - but there are times when you need to schedule something at that time. Catching a plane, a game you don't want to miss that's being played at the other end of the world, picking up a friend arriving at an unholy hour or leaving to a trip.
The flow isn't as smooth as Kent's spiral, and the general look isn't as neat as Patrick's, and I guess it will have to evolve some more, but I like it and so far it's working really well for me.
How about you? Would you Chronodex your schedule?