Legal Pads

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[edit] Description

Legal pads are cheap, sturdy, and plentiful, the grandaddy of the Hipster PDA and the second cousin of the Moleskine. Excellent to use for long-form note-taking, or for making "notes to file" to remind yourself what you were thinking the last time you touched a project.

  • My personal preference is for legal pads with wide three inch left margins, often called summary margins because after the details are noted on the right-side, your summary and topic headings can be appended on the left-side for visual clarity. Personally, I like to add square ballot boxes on the left margin to indicate tasks (in contrast to mere information) -- which are then checked off later when completed. --gochess
    • Query to gochess: "Where do you purchase the pads you refer to with the 3" margin? I can't find them anywhere." -- Perhaps check a bookstore near a law school. My personal preference: model #20-245 canary, medium-ruled, law margin from Ampad. But you can also wing it by printing your own via this PDF generator.
    • Levenger makes pads in junior, letter and legal size with an annotation margin on the left-hand side. Space is designated at the top of the page for Topic, Date, File Under and Page which comes in handy for organizing my notes and also prompts me to think about the context before committing pen to paper. A set of five letter-size pads cost $24. I'm absoutely addicted to them. --Melian

So they're designed for Cornell Notes?

  • I like using what I believe are called Junior Legal Pads. They're small enough to carry easily, but large enough to write easily. There are clipboards that can be used to provide a nice hard back and easy carrying. This is what I tend to use as a sort of a freeflowing "InBox" adjunct to my HipsterPDA.

[edit] Hacks

  • Carry a stapler, and when you're done taking notes on a given topic, tear the pages off, staple them, and either file them or drop them in your in-box. Keeps the pages tidy and keeps your information organized.
  • For those that prefer legal pads with holes in them (for binder storage), most large office stores have heavy-duty hole punchers at their copy desks, and will be happy to add holes to the pads for you.

[edit] See also

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