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  • Help for Software solution for Mac, iPhone and iPad

    Hey everybody.

    This is my first post

    About me & why I'm here?

    The me part:
    I'm a 5. semester software engineering student, at Aalborg University.
    This year at the age of 29. I discovered I have reading disabilities in the from of Dyslexia. This actually lead me to find out I suffer from ADD/ADHD. which I get medicine for now and it helps.

    The problem part:
    Even though I get medicine I still have countless hours of thinking very random stuff, just sitting and doing nothing, daydreaming and especially not getting things done.

    The solution part:
    After sitting yesterday trying to figure out how to get more productive. I thought ill use Things to make some lists and categorize stuff. Then I will be ready! I have done this before but in vain. so I thought maybe its just Things that not working for me. Started looking for other software doing the same as Things but inspiring me. Most did until I tried the demo of them. luckily by reading all the reviews one thing kept repeating itself. "GTD" & "David Allen" here google was my friend and i found my way here .

    Bought the book on iBooks and are now at part 2. After starting to read it became clear to me why software like Things haven't worked yet. I know it will help because after writing down what was nagging me the most, my reading speed for at least 2 to 5 mins was tripled! not because I read faster, but because I did not have to go back and read it again.

    The new problem:
    Now i have started this project of learning GTD & need to start implementing my system. Im not done reading the book and learning the system. But I realize it would be great starting to fill up the Inbox.

    This is why Im here:
    I want to pick the right software to implement it in first time. I have to much stuff i need to catch up on so I cant change constantly. However I will gladly scarify 3 Days finding the system instead of constantly be changing it and having it nagging me because its not the right solution.

    Preferences for the system:
    1. Collecting - This is key it have to be easy. Because of my ADHD i have to much random stuff popup i need to be able to collect quickly and effortlessly to my inbox

    2. Inbox - One place to rule them all. This is almost as important as Collecting. i don't want to waste my precious energy, going through many processes finding my stuff and organize it.

    3. Calendar (iCal) or Google Calendar integration and Reminders - Because of my ADHD I forget a lot. i have to be able to be reminded very important stuff and check things that has to be done during the day.

    4. Due dates - I have to be able to know when certain things has to be done by.

    5. Tags - I need to have a quick overview depending on my mood, energy and available time.

    6. Prioities - Some stuff is more important then other stuff.

    7. Action Lists & Lists - For motivation and ease of knowing what to choose.

    8. Projects, Tasks & Sub tasks - I get alot of ideas for projects. As a software engineer I need to be able to structure those ideas so they get done. subtasks is need because I often know both the big steps to take and the small steps needed to take the big step.

    9. @Contexts - To find the most suitable thing to do given the place Im at.

    10. Mod ability - Since i do not want to change system and but might get more energy and new needs might pop up when getting my productivity under control. Extending for more productivity and ease of use or Removing for simplicity. would be kind of nice.

    My own research and experimenting so far:
    Things 2 for mac - I don't think this is a suitable solution it does not inspire me to use it.
    Omnifocus trial for mac - to cluttered and same problem as Things 2
    A lot of clones like Things 2 and Omnifocus. they feel either to simple or to complex.
    to name a few organize, Wunderlist, ToDo, 2Do, Firetask.
    TWS "The Secret Weapon" haven't try it yet. but its lacking Calendar, Reminders & Due Dates

    What Im leaning towards is TSW because of its mod ability, Collect ability & its in Evernote which i already use. and just use Calendar + Reminders with it

    However any suggestions to other Software systems will be highly appreciated or how to combine any of the mentioned for a good solid solution. or away for TWS to better integrated with Calendar, Reminder and due dates.

    Kind regards Kasper

  • #2
    Choose the software that you will like to use.

    Originally posted by mosser View Post
    I want to pick the right software to implement it in first time.
    There's no "right" software for GTD. It is a personal choice. It's like implementing software for your mind.

    My advice - choose the software that you will like to use.

    Some people use Windows Notepad, some OmniFocus, some Nozbe and some Lotus Notes for their GTD lists. And many of us use paper (batteries not included and not needed ).

    Comment


    • #3
      Most of the tools you mention are very good tools, but the hard part of learning to get things done is acquiring the habits. A good example is the clear separation between next actions you want or need to do, and things you might do, which might go in project support materials or on a someday/maybe list. Other examples are distinguishing next actions from projects, or having clear outcomes. I think you should consider investing in the gtd implementation guide, which is really systematic. I am not good with paper, but many people have found that it works well, particularly as a starting point. I have used many of the list tools you mention, and most are fine for gtd. Things and iCal work well, for example. I would be careful using Evernote: one must carefully separate actionable items from reference.

      Comment


      • #4
        if i go the paper road ill end up in paper hell. i need a piece of software to handle it also i spend most of my time at a computer.

        just tyred TSW abit its highly modable this might not be a good thing

        Comment


        • #5
          First of all, I'm impressed at how much of the GTD system you appear to grasp for not yet reading the whole book.

          I have found in my experience it's a learning process to see how best to apply GTD for you and your needs. I started with Evernote using TSW as my base. I slightly modified TSW to my needs.

          I love Evernote because it is accessable on my iPad, iPhone and my desktop PC at work. The mobile platform Evernote has created is ideal. The one thing I don't like about Evernote is how to create a project. Each step needs to be a separate item in Evernote.

          So, I'm exploring NirvanaHQ.com. I love the way their system works for Next Actions AND Projects. Each line in a project also becomes a Next Action. It's just perfect on my PC. The downside?? Mobile. It's just not there yet. It's fine for entering a Next Action using my iPhone or iPad but I need to go back to the PC to really clean it up and get it in order. THAT means, more time needed. I don't like a system that isn't simple...I'm doing GTD to keep things simple.

          Since NirvanaHQ is new and I have seen what they have done so far, and that they are working on the system, I've signed up for a year in the hopes they follow through with a great mobile platform. If they create a great mobile platform...I would become a huge NirvanaHQ pusher!

          Comment


          • #6
            Mosser, I also applaud you for "getting it," and also getting that learning & implementing GTD is a project, and that you need to start where you are.

            One thing I will comment on is the In Box. Having only one is a great idea in theory, but in practice, I think you'll find you will have - and, indeed, need - several. For example:
            • voice mail
            • email in box (maybe multiple depending on how many email addresses you have)
            • paper inbox at office
            • paper inbox at home

            Even though you intend to use an electronic list manager, paper will still creep into your life. While I don't have ADD/ADHD, I know plenty of people who do, and I'm guessing that you will experience great freedom in being able to have these random ideas you have and capture them - either in voice memo, on paper, or whatever - and just dump them into your inbox for later processing. It will free up your mind and yet you can process them when you're in a more focused frame of mind and able to go through the processing questions on each item. (A lot of ideas you might just collect in a "shoe box" - Evernote, or wherever - "Ideas I May or May Not Do Anything About"...)

            Just my two cents. Good luck!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by mosser View Post
              A lot of clones like Things 2 and Omnifocus. they feel either to simple or to complex. to name a few organize, Wunderlist, ToDo, 2Do, Firetask.
              I'd suggest taking another look at Todo from Appigo. It may look simple but it's quite powerful. Appigo have always been good at providing powerful features yet through a clean, simple interface.

              I use their web version at work on a Windows machine, the Mac version at home and the iOS version everywhere else.

              Regarding your projects - I would setup a custom folder for each project. In each folder you can have tasks and sub-tasks, and with the most recent update you can now put a checklist inside a subtask if you want.

              It has email to inbox, drag & drop (web & Mac), multi-edit for contexts, tags, and rescheduling dates, manual sort, etc. Can't speak highly enough about it and unlike Toodledo, you won't spend hours tweaking it or working around problems like lack of inbox.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by PeterW View Post
                I'd suggest taking another look at Todo from Appigo. It may look simple but it's quite powerful. Appigo have always been good at providing powerful features yet through a clean, simple interface.
                Peter, I know you like Appigo Todo. Do you have any sense of what they're doing with their new Todo Pro app and sync service? Are they going to deprecate the other sync services? The reviews of the new functionality have been pretty bad.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by mcogilvie View Post
                  Peter, I know you like Appigo Todo. Do you have any sense of what they're doing with their new Todo Pro app and sync service? Are they going to deprecate the other sync services? The reviews of the new functionality have been pretty bad.
                  @mcogilvie,

                  The main difference with Todo Pro is that it now supports workgroup sharing. Users can share their lists, assign tasks to team members, post time-stamped notes viewable by others, etc. I'm a single user and don't need this functionality but I tried it out during beta testing and it worked fine. In my view it's a good implementation - Todo can now compete with the likes of Basecamp and be a simpler but much more affordable option.

                  The iOS and Mac apps still look and work much the same way as they did before but with the added functionality. Todo Online (which was developed and hosted by AppSpot) was replaced by Todo Pro which has been built by Appigo.

                  The bad reviews are the result of a major failure in the the migration of data from old to new. Appigo did not advise users it was about to go live with major changes so when things began to unravel, users were justifiably unhappy. The web service was offline for a few days and some users appeared to have lost data. I was lucky - being in a different time zone I saw issues being reported on social media and held back from upgrading.

                  It all seems to be working fine now. Now that the web service is in-house they are able to update it regularly so I expect we will see additional functionality added progressively.

                  As for the other sync services, they're all still there and there are no plans to remove them. With Todo Pro the apps and web service are free but you pay to sync, with the original Todo you pay for the apps and sync is free (e.g. Toodledo, iCloud).

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hi, Kasper!

                    Here's my 2 cents about random stuff popping up in your head, based on the randomness going on in my head...

                    A lot of my random stuff is just stuff... there's nothing I need or want to do about it, it's just popping up. Not actionable. I keep that stuff on a separate list from the stuff I have to actually do something about. It keeps my lists focused and clean.

                    And welcome to the party! Keep shooting thoughts out to us... I've gotten lots of fabulous advice from the brilliant minds on this forum.

                    Dena

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks so far

                      I will look in to Todo and Todo pro.

                      however whats the difference? i see price Todo is a fixed price and Todo pro is subscription based.

                      I know TSW is not the solution anymore.

                      I also did a bit more playing with Things since i have that, with more knowledge it seems better actually much better.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by mosser View Post
                        however whats the difference? i see price Todo is a fixed price and Todo pro is subscription based.
                        With Todo you pay for the app and sync with compatible services such as Toodledo.
                        With Todo Pro the apps are free and you pay to sync with Todo Pro web service. So it will depend on what you need. I have an iPhone, Mac at home and use a Windows PC at work, so Todo Pro suits me for that environment.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: software help for ADD/ADHD

                          Mosser,

                          This is a really quality thread of advice from some of the most veteran GTDers here. Definitely heed their advice on finding what is right for you and how you like to work. I created the Ready-Set-Do! Approach to getting things done on the Mac; and I'd like suggest you try it for a couple of reasons:

                          1. Clients of mine with ADD/ADHD have told me it is better for them than other systems they've used before. This primarily has to do with how it leverages the power of One At-A-Time throughout the entire workflow. It helps with focus.

                          2. It's the only approach you will find that doesn't commit you to an application that may or may not have future software support or get bought out by some future company and ruined. It teaches you how to organize and utilize your files on your mac in a GTD-like way.

                          It also now syncs with TaskPaper on iPhone / iPad.

                          I recently read that David Allen is now working on a productivity meta-app with some former Microsoft software engineers of Excel and Word. The goal seems to be trying to find a program-agnostic way to work with all of your inventories of stuff (e.g., mind-maps, documents, notes, email, etc.). I'll be the first to admit there are things that could be improved in Ready-Set-Do! (it is, afterall, a hobby for me), but the fact that David Allen is looking for program-agnostic tools in this new software venture tells me Ready-Set-Do! is thinking--philosophically, at least--in the right direction.

                          Ready-Set-Do! can be evaluated as a program (and has been by noteworthy members of this forum--whose feedback I am grateful for), but it can also be used / evaluated as a training tool for mastering some of the basic GTD habits and getting your computer files and ideas organized in ways that better help you think and act on them. It even uses the audio features of OSX to speak to you.

                          So feel free to give it a trial run. I'm happy to receive any constructive criticism or feedback you may have (both on and off the forums). I'm also happy to help you in any way I can--as I've seen firsthand just how difficult perspective and control can be for some of my clients with ADD/ADHD.

                          All the best,

                          Todd V

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