and Information Scraps
Haystack Home | Jourknow | PLUM | Exhibit | Relo | Haystack Client | Publications | People



Reinventing personal information management
via our scattered bits
Jourknow is no longer under active development by the research team; we are in the process of open-sourcing the project. In the meantime, many of the research ideas are being carried over into the Firefox extension.

Information scraps are the small notes and thoughts we deal with every day: they are scribbled on Post-it notes, scrawled on corners of sheets of paper, buried inside the bodies of e-mail messages sent to ourselves, and typed haphazardly into text files. This scattered data contains our great ideas, sketches, notes, reminders, driving directions, and even our poetry.

The Jourknow project is re-envisioning how you live and work with information scraps. What if your computer could do much better than being a digital sticky note application? What if it could remember where you were, or what you meant, and possibly even help you get it done? The Jourknow team has done ethnographic research investigating the nature of information scraps and built a new tool called Jourknow to help you manage the data. Jourknow associates your notes with contextual information, like where you were and who you were chatting with, helps you organize scattered thoughts like recipes, and forwards your thoughts into the appropriate applications.


Van Kleek, M., Bernstein, M., Karger, D.R., and schraefel, mc. GUI — Phooey!: The Case for Text Input. UIST 2007, Newport, RI, 2007. [video] [slides] [poster]

Bernstein, M., Van Kleek, M., Karger, D.R., and schraefel, mc. Information Scraps: How and Why Information Eludes our Personal Information Management Tools. To appear in ACM Transaction on Information Systems, special issue on Personal Information Management.

Bernstein, M., Van Kleek, M., schraefel, mc, and Karger, D.R.. Evolution and Evaluation of an Information Scrap Manager. CHI 2008 Workshop on Personal Information Management, Florence, Italy, 2008.

Bernstein, M., Van Kleek, M., Karger, D.R., and schraefel, mc. Management of Personal Information Scraps Research abstract, MIT CSAIL, April 2007.

Bernstein, M., Van Kleek, M., Karger, D.R., and schraefel, mc. Management of Personal Information Scraps. Work-in-progress Poster, CHI 2007, San Jose, CA, 2007.


Jourknow is currently undergoing rapid development, and as such no stable releases exist yet. Development code is available upon request.

For more information

Please contact jourknow [at] csail dot mit dot edu.


Jourknow is part of the ConnectingME/Virpi initiative at the Nokia Research Center Cambridge and the Web Science Research Institute.