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Multiple Computers Multiple Problems

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  • Multiple Computers Multiple Problems

    I am looking for ideas about how to technically implement GTD with some unusual technical constraints. At work I have three separate computers on my desk, all with their own email address and complete setup (outlook, etc.) and I can not take information from one computer to put in another. Well I can under certain circumstances, but the process, when it is allowed at all, involves getting other people to actually make the transfer happen so it’s not practical. As you can imagine I can not install software on any of the machines.

    I have a lot email, projects, tasks, etc. coming in on two of the machines. I can retype information from machine onto another, but usually not vice versa. I want to develop some kind of system to track nextactions and projects but I am at a loss about a simple way to do that. I dread the idea of two complete lists on each computer so I might have to go to paper and pen, but that would mean I would have to leave everything at the office.

    Anyone have any ideas or some experiences like mine?

    Thanks for your help.

  • #2
    Can you plug a USB drive into each computer? If yes, you can store files on the USB, and then take the drive with you from computer to computer.

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    • #3
      You are not alone. Lots of folks have problems when they work part time from home and part time from work. Sometimes hard to keep your lists synced.

      Two suggestions:

      1) Are you allowed to connect a USB thumdrive? Store your things there. You can even install some applications on the thumbdrive so you can take the application with you. They are small, cheap and reliable. I keep mine on my keychain.

      2) Use an online tool such as www.backpackit.com. All you need is a web browser, just log in from anywhere and you can see or edit your lists.

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      • #4
        GTD with constraints

        You don't actually say what kind of environment you are working in, and of course that makes a difference. I have several former students working with classified material, and there are tight constraints, i.e., nothing comes out. In an environment where, for example, hard disks are locked up when not in use, there is an obvious overhead.

        On the other hand, perhaps you are afflicted with the kinds of techno-demons found in Dilbert. In that case, I would probably collect with paper and manage my lists with Palm. And complain a lot to the powers-that-be about rampant nonsense.

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        • #5
          Web-based storage is probably the way to go (as somebody already mentioned), but if that doesn't work, how about emailing to yourself? Granted, not ideal.

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          • #6
            Multiple Computers - With email addresses...

            Configure the email clients on two of the computers to automatically forward (and optionally delete) their email to the third.

            This would allow you to process all your email in one place.

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            • #7
              Paper?

              Originally posted by gambrose
              I am looking for ideas about how to technically implement GTD with some unusual technical constraints. At work I have three separate computers on my desk, all with their own email address and complete setup (outlook, etc.) and I can not take information from one computer to put in another.
              Originally posted by gambrose
              I have a lot email, projects, tasks, etc. coming in on two of the machines. I can retype information from machine onto another, but usually not vice versa.
              I'm not really sure what this means. If you're allowed to re-type the data then you're allowed to transfer it, right? If this is the case, then, as others have suggested, a USB drive might be appropriate.

              If this is not the case, then I wonder if you've considered good old fashioned paper, writing down and printing out what you need and filing it or carrying it with you like many people who aren't so computer oriented do. A simple notebook might be very valuable for coordinating the things that have to be done on the separate computers. You might even categorize your actions by what computer each task needs to be done on.

              Good luck,
              Tom S.
              Last edited by Tom Shannon; 08-05-2005, 06:15 AM.

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              • #8
                Browser bookmarks for all those PCs

                I also use multiple workstations, both in the studio and at home.

                You probably use several important web sites throughout your work week; to keep track of them all in one place, regardless of which workstation I'm on, I use a free online site call Spurl ( spurl.net ) -- you can set up keywords and categories for your bookmarks and, of course, view them from any machine that has internet access.

                I like Spurl over del.icio.us because I can keep some links private (such as pointers to client proofing areas, etc.)

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