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User stories which include the Present/Teach themes


Vic Neshyba - general contractor

I am a general contractor in the business of rehabilitating older homes and/or building new homes for affordable rent/sale to low-income families. This is more of a ministry than a business as I minimize the profit factor. I am also a retired Officer of U.S. Marines in which capacity I first began using BrainStorm many years ago.

I find BrainStorm really good for several things but primarily four:

First is listing and tracking every area of interest that I am involved in (and there are several) complete with all the goals, deadlines, tasks to be done and related contacts ... sort of a 'Life's Plan' as it encompasses my work, family, social, educational and spiritual aspects. The result is increased productivity and is evidenced by many comments over the years from folks who ask how I manage to be so involved and to get so much done. Basically I take the time to plan my work, then I work the plan ... making adjustments as I go. They are even more impressed that I take time for myself and family regularly ... e.g. weekend camping every month.

The second is outlining articles/papers that I write, newsletters that I publish and renovation projects that I undertake.

The third is in planning events ... large family reunions, church gatherings, business events, etc. Basically BrainStorm facilitates my keeping track of a myriad of details.

The fourth is in the area of teaching ... BrainStorm helps significantly in laying out the structure of various courses and the development of readings, handouts, papers and student progress ... where each dovetails into and leads to reaching the objective of the course.

In the Marines, I began using BrainStorm in its older versions (CP/M and DOS) in similar ways. The current Windows version is so much easier.

Vic Neshyba

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Michael Gowlett - management trainer

I am a management trainer, semi-retired, still doing occasional work for past clients. I find BrainStorm useful for:

- organizing thoughts on new topics

- logically listing info for meetings, lesson plans, etc.

- forming initial structure for writing, (I don't always follow the structure developed but this isn't a disadvantage)

Michael Gowlett

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Gwen Harlow - presenter and writer

I use BrainStorm for a number of different things. I sometimes have to give presentations, so I use it to help me to sort out my main message, and then fit in all the information I want to present, in a logical way.

Sometimes I have to write a report on an event I have been to, and BrainStorm can help with that. Especially if it has been an event lasting for more than one day.

I also write fiction as a hobby. Sometimes I just write and it all falls into place (don't ask how!), but other times, the ideas come thick and fast and I just want to get them down somewhere. BrainStorm can help to sort out all the ideas and see where they should belong.

Gwen Harlow

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Caitriona Reed - teacher and writer

I am a teacher and writer and I find BrainStorm invaluable in organizing ideas for writing and planning for classes and workshops.

Caitriona Reed

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Anonymous - university lecturer

I use BrainStorm in very many different ways - here are a few:

(a) I plan lectures by using the headings and then place materials in subheadings etc. I find BrainStorm very flexible unlike Outliners etc. I find it useful to be able to concentrate on a detailed section of the work and then zoom back to the "Big Picture".

(b) I use multiple files to relate the parts of the lecture programme with my research. I keep outlines of my research on BrainStorm.

(c) I also use BrainStorm as a general index (at home). I simply have a large file with each main heading being A-Z and then equivalent subheadings(as in indexing) and then keep all the useful/useless information e.g. name and address of electricians, vets, where to buy concert tickets etc in this one file. It would be possible to do this, of course, on a well organized database, but the BrainStorm programme is excellent because my mind is not as tidy as a database. It is brilliant because if I ever think - I've lost that information - I haven't, its in BrainStorm.

I keep that file resident in the "background" whenever I am working on the computer at home.

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