MindTags is a free, extremely simple productivity program which keeps track of thoughts, ideas, URLs, text clippings and so on. It allows you to take advantage of your brain's consistency in the way it categorises ideas. I wrote it after noticing that my brain tends to consistently 'file' certain ideas under the same keyword.
For example: if you asked me where I'd store all my information about dinosaurs, I'd say, in a file called "dinos". I've found that the tags I choose for ideas are consistent over 10-15 years of my life.
To install the program, first install Java if you don't have it already. Then click the download link below, extract the files from the ZIP, and copy the program folder to your Desktop or applications folder. You run the program by double clicking MindTags.jar.
Download MindTags 1.01: MindTags.zip
The software automates the tasks of 'creating appropriately named files' and 'looking up files'. Keep it running, and any time you need to save an idea or text clipping, type the tag and paste it in. If you use a Mac, you can also use spotlight to search through the text contents of your notes. Try the tag approach though, see if it works for you.
MindTags has the advantages of being small, very easy to install/remove, totally free, internationalised, and compatible with MacOS, Windows and Linux. Its main disadvantages are that it currently doesn't provide the powerful features found in e.g. Notational Velocity (MacOS) and EverNote. However, you may feel that you don't actually need fancy features - or you may find that MindTags can be used alongside another more powerful notation program.
Finally, if you don't like the 'tag' approach for recording ideas, you could still use the program as a simple task planner or diary by using task names, dates (13-4-2011), version numbers and so on as your tags.
Why not give it a try?
License: MindTags is free to use, however no warranty is provided and you use it entirely at your own risk. Redistribution of the original zipfile is allowed providing that your web page presents my name clearly and provides a link to http://graemebell.net.
1.0 - First release. (8/2011)
1.01 - Corrected textpane vertical scrolling bug. (21/9/2011)