Out of the Box
James Gowans, comparing his iPhone to a toolbox:
Unless you’ve got some pre-existing condition, you’re probably not spending a great deal of time contemplating the colour of your tools, their placement in the tool box, or which ones look aesthetically pleasing next to each other. You probably don’t rush to the hardware store every time you read a review of a hammer that may be minutely better than your stock one. You set it up and organize it the way that makes the most sense to you, so that you can get in, grab the tool you need, get the job done, and put the tool away without having to think about it.
I’ve seen what James describes in places beyond “productivity”1, where tools are idolized and become the focus instead of what those tools fashion. Hiking and outdoors gear is a racket where people will buy the best gear but never actually get outside or they’ll have everything but not know how to use it. It’s a pretty clear sign when out on the trail of who is experienced and who’s just a hobbiest outdoorsman.
Whether it’s how you use your iPhone or any tool or gear, become more than a hobbyist and learn your tools—know them deeply—but most importantly, use them to fashion something great.