Product Recommendation: 3×5 Blank Index Cards

Somehow, I ran out of index cards at both my house and my office. Life nearly shut down there for a day. The index card has got to be one of the best organizational inventions ever made. I keep a stack next to the phone and another next to my desk. I keep some in my outdoor jacket pockets. I keep a some in my suit coat pockets. I have a nifty leather holder for swank events so that if I take a quick note it looks formal and official.
A 3×5 card is perfect for an errand list. It’s great for taking a phone message or leaving a note to someone else. They work pretty well for quickie screen designs, or mini-outlines of project issues. You can hand them out at group events to capture ideas, unless you need stickies for posting. Torn in half it is a great bookmark, and you can use the other half to bookmark the endnotes at the back of the book. Folded in half it fits perfectly in your front shirt pocket or in with your folded paper money in your front pocket. They fit nicely in your passport holder for important notes and numbers you don’t want to lose.
If you buy them in bulk they cost about a tenth of a cent apiece. Even at Staples in a pack of 500 they’re still less than a penny apiece. I probably use about a thousand a year, so the cost is cheap and the waste is minimal. I prefer the blank ones, freeform on both sides. They look better out in public, and in any case the lines go the wrong way – if lined I would want them horizontal in portrait orientation, not landscape.
If you want to feel truly organized, you can download the free D*I*Y Hipster PDA, which is a series of templates that print calendars, to-do lists, etc on index cards. Hot tip: If you like the 5.5″ x 8.5″ format, he’s got a fantastic set of free templates for that size too. Both of these incorporate ideas from Steven Covey’s Seven Habits, and David Allen’s Getting Things Done.
Let us celebrate the humble index card! Understated, practical, polyphonically useful multitasking assistant extraordinaire.