Sunday, January 29, 2006

The Journal

I've been evaluating "The Journal" for Windows (, and so far I've been very impressed with it. Sufficiently impressed with it, in fact, that I went ahead and bought it before the 45-day trial is up. Just the ability to type up blog entries off-line (and have them spellchecked -- I can see all you readers breathing a sigh of relief) is worth the price of admission right there. I was also able to (relatively) easily copy the entire contents of this blog into the program's database so that I have it for reference off-line as well. I did figure out how to set up multiple journals, so I have my "personal" journal along with the one that contains my blog entries. Uploading the day's blog entry doesn't upload the personal entry, so that's a goodly thing.

In addition, though, the program also has a "loose-leaf notebook" that is perfect for storing the ideas that I come up with and log in the little notebook I carry around with me. Because I can organize them under headings, I've got a much easier time of finding things later. Overall, it's an excellent tool for writers, whether or not you decide to use the blog tools. The fact that it has strong encryption (and you can get even stronger security for an extra $10) is a big plus, too. While I don't really think there's anything so interesting in my personal journal that I would really care if it came out, still, a personal journal should be, well, personal. If you don't have that guarantee of privacy, you might not be as open with yourself as you would otherwise. And writers, of all people, need to be able to plum their very depths, as this is where the true emotion in print comes from.

My only complaint is that there isn't an automated way to give your blog posts a title. I'm trying using a Blogger API trick, but I'm afraid it won't work unless I upload the entry as plain text (losing all my italics and such). I'll continue to experiment. This has been a much-requested feature, and the author has acknowledged it's utility, so I think there's hope it will be included in a future release.

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