If you've ever had to write a reference paper, essay or lab report, you know what it means to struggle with an overwhelming amount of information to organise, or a blank page looking back at you. WriteWell helps you organise that information easily, and offers writing templates to help you get started with your paper.
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If you're an avid user of Evernote, chances are you use a system where your notes use a specific template. You could go about copying and pasting these to create a bunch of them, but Apple blog TUAW shows off how to use AppleScript to automatically create a notebook with formatting filled in for you.
As excited as some of us still are about Google Wave (hell, two of us wrote a book), Wave's biggest problem remains: "What would I use it for?" With the app's new wave templates, Google wants to guide you toward answers.
Looking to re-arrange the stuff of your house or plan a dream room? Floorplanner is a web-based tool for planning rooms and furniture layouts using a simple but powerful editor. We originally reviewed Floorplanner in 2007, but since then they've introduced some helpful new features. We originally dug it because of the easy drag-and-drop interface and the extensive library of furniture, fixtures, plants and more are still there. One of the principle reader complaints back then was the lack of 3D planning, but you can now plan in both 2D and 3D, switching between the views for a long view of proportion and layout. The free demo on their site doesn't allow you to save, but does give you a feel for the tools and layout—though you might be tempted to sign up, after a little Sims-style rearrangement. Or, you know, they put that PrtSc key on up there on your keyboard for a reason. Floorplanner has a free and premium tier; the limitation on the free plan is one house or apartment floor plan. If you upgrade to Floorplanner PLUS for $US27.50 a year, you can create up to five home plans.
If you're a big fan of the templates at D*I*Y Planner, and we certainly are, you'll be thrilled to know they have released a cross-platform program for generating your own templates. The application, at least the Windows version I tested, is stand alone and portable. It is currently limited to generating month/week/day appointment templates but will have other D*I*Y Planner templates like notes and such included in future releases. Automatic scaling to various US and international paper sizes is included, as well as the ability to tweak a host of smaller things like line weight. Completed templates are exported as a PDF file. Dynamic Templates is open source and cross-platform. Dynamic Templates
Microsoft's Outlook Blog runs down how to set up and access templates in Outlook. Templates are one of those often-neglected options in email programs, but they can be really handy; much email communication is repetitive, and having information set and ready to send makes the task easier. With that said, the options for using templates are pretty deeply buried. Given that email editing is one of the few parts of Outlook 2007 that actually uses the Ribbon, it's somewhat amazing that there's no way of accessing templates from there. For a similar (and automated) approach online, check out how to send canned responses in Gmail.