The story behind Journapi

Why did I built a web-based minimalist bullet journal ?
may 10, 2020

During the 2 months of confinement shared with my girlfriend, I had the opportunity to observe the contribution that her bullet journal had on her.

She is capable of resuming the thread of her months, weeks, days. Also, she can list what she has done and what she has not in an easy manner.

This felt like a real pain to me.

Working on many projects at the same time and learning new things everyday while not taking notes. I have a hard time keeping the thread of this myself.

Bullet journal, kezako ?

The bullet journal is an organizational method that aims to divide days, months and years by using "bullets".

The original frame of a bullet journal is simple and consists in an index, a page for the ongoing month and pages divided for each days. Every task or event is a line, striped once done.

This method is at the core of what we call a "bullet journal", but the freedom offered by this method gave birth to a lot of variations.

The "bullart journal" is one of the most frequent, bringing the bullet journal from an organizational mostly axed towards productivity to a method of expressing creativity at the core of our organizational tools.

In the same way, by adopting a minimalistic vision and by diverting the organizational and productivist objective of the bullet journal, Journapi keeps the "bullet" system to keep the thread of what happens daily.

Keeping the thread

After two months of daily usage, I can say that taking notes of my tasks and moments I spend (whether good or bad), had a huge contribution on the vision I have of my daily life and my progression towards my objectives.

It also has been an efficient manner to remind my confinement and to be able to summarize what I have done once it was over.

I also surprise myself to read some bullets and to feel a lot of satisfaction staring at the fact that they are written in a tool that I built myself.

Technical discovery

Working on this project has been the opportunity to discover the TALL Stack, the CLI development and the creation of an Alfred workflow.

TALL is an acronym combining:

The true discovery for me was my first steps with AlpineJS and Laravel Livewire, I already knew Tailwind and Laravel pretty well.

I found this paradigm interesting, even though I felt that it was kind of premature at certain moments.

It feels impressing to see that we can reach an almost similar result as an SPA, without worrying about a lot of things inherit to them (API, Authentication, ...).

Ergonomic challenge

One of the main factor that blocked my in the writing of my bullet journal was that this task is intrinsically related to handwriting. And also to self-motivated writing.

Not having the habit to write nor handwrite, it seemed inadequate to me to maintain this kind of journal.

I needed to insert this task into my daily habits and make it seem like a new feature in my work environment. More than a habit that needs a daily fight to keep it alive.

I'm, for now, satisfied of the result I have offering four ways (and an infinite amount to create yourself) to add entries to my journal:

By integrating this task inside my daily tools which are the terminal and Alfred, I succeed at keeping this habit since I've put Journapi online.


Adapting existing concepts and principles so they integrate well into my daily life is a captivating task.

This project took me one week of cumulated work but I learned so much from it.

Identifying and analyzing a difficulty encountered everyday and finding a solution answering the constraints of its users is a great enrichment whether it is technical or personal.

Even if this project will not be the one that brings me independence and freedom, it's a great contribution to my daily life and I'm happy to have taken the time to develop it.

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