As you all know by now I procrastinate. And, that is an understatement. More often than not my procrastination is fuelled by distractions, especially when it comes to writing non-academic things (reading academic things makes my procrastination rears its head). This is where the internet opens its treasure trove of apps and websites, offering numerous ways of writing free of distraction. Which is part of the problem to be honest. But that’s a story for another day… I think.
Today I introduce you to two actually distraction-free writing tools that you should check out if you haven’t already. One of them is for OSX (sorry Windows users, Apple currently has my loyalty) and the other is web-based so it’s free for all.
Imagine. It’s an aptly named writing tool that helps you write sans all the usual bells and whistles. The only two things you can fiddle around with are the font style and the background colour, which suits me just fine. Some times trying to figure out how a certain app works can be distracting on its own and that is a downside in my opinion. You can make the font size as large as you want while writing with a slider in the preference menu and the open style is maintained despite the change in size. Like most text editors, Imagine comes with an autocorrect feature, word count and the standard editing styles including a highlighting option. I usually write most of my blog posts on Imagine with either Coffitivity or 8tracks playing in the background.
All in all I would give Imagine 8/10 for its simplicity and clean style. This app is worth a try if you want a change in scenery from your usual text editors and go back to simpler times. You can get it for free from the App Store.
Now for the second introduction, I discovered Noisli by accident when I was going through this medium post. Remember how the Powerpuff Girls came into being? Sugar and spice and everything nice with a dash of Ingredient X? Well that’s Noisli for you. It’s a cocktail of the text features of Imagine, the people-noise of Coffitivity and the nature sounds of Rainy Mood. This blog post was written in Noisli with the thunderstorm track. You can also play two or more different tracks simultaneously as I did with the windy track and the forest mix. The text editor itself is pretty unobtrusive with the only downside that the background colour changes as you type and includes the combination of garish yellow background with white font which makes reading and writing a bit difficult (and a distraction). If the developers could provide an option to control the variations in the colour scheme that would be helpful. Whatever you write you can also save as text and download them for safekeeping, something Noisli recommends due to their beta stage.
Noisli is not available for OSX but only for iPad and iPhones (for $1.99) along with the web-tool and scores 7/10 from me. The lack of basic editing options, random ‘chromotherapy’ that make writing a tad difficult and no auto-correct functions are the only downsides I can think of.
That said, you should definitely check both of them out if you are in the mood for a change. Happy writing!