Tools for Action

I just published an article called “Tools for Action”, on the subject of my recent work.
The main question that the article dives into is:

What if users were given a tool to organize their thoughts and actions with the same specificity as a tool for thought that lets them organize their notes?

I wanted to create this topic to further dive into the topic. For the past 2.5 years, I have been researching and developing tools for action and have been heavily inspired by tools for thought, chiefly Roam Research. I believe there is an opportunity to encapsulate the entire workflow of thinking, consuming, and creating(across multiple apps) in one stream of activity. I am currently working on a few tools for action built on Roam, so I can give people practical examples of the concepts I’ve been mentioning. The first one should be released by the end of this week.

Look forward to continuing the conversation and hearing what others have to say on this subject!

Thanks for the post @dylan. What would you say is different in tools for action as opposed to what you understand for tools for thought? I’m just curious of your use of the action word in this context.

That’s a great question, and it’s difficult to throw around new terms like “tools for action” for sure. Maybe a better word comes about in the future, but I’ve been using tool for action to make the point that a tool should allow us to organize and better make sense of the thoughts(inquiry that guides our actions and hypotheses) and actions(eg. creating documents, augmenting search queries, viewing websites, interacting with web apps, actual activity) with the same specificity that a tool for thought aims to allow us to organize our notes. The word action is supposed to take the metaphor further and demonstrate the need for a tool that applies principles of contextualization, querying, creating linked references(and so on) to our entire workflow and its accompanying contexts and thought processes.

I hope that clarifies some of what I’m trying to say and I’d love to continue the convo, @hanbzu :slight_smile:

The notion of action reminds me of user agency within a tool. How much agency do you have to engage with the community customize, build add-ons with or without code, etc (probably more subcategories here)?

Have you explored platforms like Athans Research or Hyperdraft?