Trying to Get Things Done

kinnon —  October 25, 2008 — Leave a comment

I've spent a lot of my time approaching and now passing the halfway point of life (as we don't know whether the Singularity is here or not) often managing to forget to get important things done. A diagnosis of ADD thanks to this book in the early '90's was helpful (prompting a professional to be invoPalm Historylved) – as it allowed Imbi and I to work to put tools in place to deal with the simple manifestations of my attention deficit. The Palm Pilot was a God-send. (Maybe I can get her to tell the funny story of how I worked on her to let me get one, many years ago @ an NAB show in Vegas. The comments are open, dear.)

In the last few months, I'd noticed the return of an inability to keep track of how many balls I had in the air. In a previous season, I'd been a huge fan of 37signals Backcamp and Basecamp. (I still love the company and their software.) But, as the iPod Touch has become my primary computing tool when I'm visiting clients or on the road I needed something that would work well with it.

I saw Things (a software package rather than a description of the thousands of Apps available in the Apps store) in the Productivity section of the iTunes Apps store. I was intrigued. I've been using it for about a month now and am impressed. Right now the Beta desktop version only syncs with one desktop client (my main computer, the MacPro). This will be fixed when the product is released at MacWorld in January. I need it to be able to sync between my MacPro, the MacBook and the Touch. And hooks to Gcal would be helpful.

Link to Cultured Code's Things PageI love Things' simplicity and ease of use. As I do the final close-up at our summer place (which is on an island and will become inaccessible in a matter of weeks because of freeze up on Lake Simcoe), I'm walking through my ToDo list on things to ensure I don't forget to do – things like make sure all the drains have non-toxic antifreeze in them.

Imbi just emailed me a few more things and I've updated them manually. (If it worked with the Laptop along with the MacPro, Things would be so much simpler – but that's coming.)

MacWorld said this about Cultured Code's Things,

Although Things is still in preview stage, which means features and its appearance could still change, it feels close to complete already. In fact, its open simplicity is exactly what leads us to recommend it to anyone with a Mac.

 If you're a Mac and iPhone/Touch user, and like me, find yourself a little less than organized (pictures of my office to come) then Things might be the perfect solution.

I should also note that I'm checking out ActionMethod, which appears to be a very good, ajaxy, project manager. It's what I would have used Basecamp for, in earlier days. There's a free version for up to a Gazillion projects – but each with only 50 steps per project. Or for $12 per month or $99 per year, you get gazillions of projects, gazillions of steps and 2 gigs of free space. I've signed up for the basic unit to see whether it will help on a particular project Imbi and I are working on. For my purposes, it needs an iPhone/Touch app to make it a viable productivity tool.

Here's the review from Mashable that turned me onto it.

Now I need to get some things done.



A television editor, writer & director since 1978. A Christian since 1982. More than a little frustrated with the Church in the West since late in the last millennium.

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