February 5, 2017

Curio Helps You Think Things Through

Curio IconCurio Icon

Product: Zengobi Curio - Note Taking, Mind Mapping, Brainstorming
Price: $59.99 to $139.99 (Price for academia $89.99)

Curio is a strange beast. It is unlike any other application available on the Mac. It is a collection of tools to help you in your quest to produce content, think things through, and manage your life.

What makes Curio unique is two things:

  1. Curio tries to implement in one application, tasks which are attempted by a host of single feature applications. Curio has a mind map component. It has an outlining component. It has an Index Card component. These are tasks usually performed by a dedicated application. In Curio, these are all available for you to work with.
  2. It provides you a freeform canvas where you are not constrained in any way. There are no restrictions to how you want to achieve your project goals. You have at your command a plethora of tools and you get to choose to mix and match those tools to achieve your goals.

Once in a while, you run across an application which is going to change the way you work. Significantly change the way you work. Thankfully doesn’t happen too often (that would freak out old people like me) but when it does, there is an excitement which hits you. You are on the precipice of forging into new territory, of traveling into a workflow where there will be new things to learn and experience but there are also going to be productive results from the learning. Curio gives me that feeling. It is a new way for me to experience the process of writing. Of thinking. Of exploring what the nuances are, what the dimensions are and they can all be in one space in one application, and I can be immersed in it. Because it is all available in the same application, I find that I am more likely to use them, I am more likely to give myself the opportunity to take the time to think about it. Take the time to organize my thoughts better. Curio has the potential of improving the quality of my content and that is something I am grateful for.

Review of Curio

Zengobi was very kind to provide me a license for Curio with the idea that I would review the new version 11.0. So here is the review.

If you are a person who is producing content. Any content. If you feel that your content can be improved by thinking things through, you should try out Curio. It has all the tools necessary to help you in the process of thinking, producing and managing your content related workflow.

Curio Working WindowCurio Working Window

While writing this article, this is how the window in Curio looked like. I am used to writing in iA Writer. iA Writer is a program where this article is going to end up, but in the act of writing in Curio, I find that I can move the process along by making a few mind maps or lists to help the process. To clarify my thinking. Curio through its set of integrated tools makes that process easy and efficient.

The developer makes the following claim about Curio:

The key point is that everything related to your project is stored, managed, and tracked within a single project file using a single, well-integrated application. You’re not juggling a mess of files scattered about your hard disk with a disparate suite of apps.

Curio delivers. It helps you manage your projects. It also helps you be more creative, more incisive, more efficient in the production of the content which is the central component of your project management. I have just started scratching the surface of this product and I am excited by the potential it shows.

Curio is available in three editions with prices ranging from $59.99 to $139.99. The features of each of these versions are listed on their site. Pick the flavor you prefer. I am covering the Professional version of the product.

Curio has the potential to change your life. It is heartily recommended.

Stacks of Tasks to Be Done

Curio Mind MapCurio Mind Map

Curio gives you access to several tools. I am going to concentrate on one of them for this article, Stacks. I will write follow-up articles on the others in the coming months.

Stacks are a great way of organizing tasks.

Curio StacksCurio Stacks

Stacks as implemented in Curio, reminds me of Trello. At any given point in time, I have a bunch of blog ideas listed under Ideas. I start work on one of them and move them on to the WIP Stack. I add components to the task at that stage: Write, Post to ipadpedia.net, Post to Medium.com & Post to Twitter. I move along that process and when all the components are done, I move them over to the Done Stack. I can assign due dates and other meta tags to each of these tasks.

It is a competent way of having a handle on the various aspects of a project whilst you are in the middle of it. Gives you direction and keeps you on track.

Conceptually, Stacks can also be used to include a product feature list to be implemented, then the move to a stack of those being worked on, and the corresponding move to the Done stack when the feature is implemented.

Stacks comes with support of a whole host of meta-data and it is a full-featured system of task management built right into Curio and its project management toolset.

Curio Meets EisenhowerCurio Meets Eisenhower

Another way of making use of Stacks is to design an implementation of the Eisenhower Decision Matrix. Gives you an overview of the tasks which are on the platter and the relative priority of them. I implement this through a confluence of two tools from Curio, the Table and the Stacks. It gives me some sense of what is pressing at a glance.

So, this is Stacks as implemented by Curio. Helping you get a handle on your projects and the associated tasks which make up your projects.


I am excited by Curio. I recommend it heartily.

macosxguru at the gmail thingie

Curio Writing

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