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  • Can Gmail Reliably be Your Trusted System or Do You use something else too?

    In spite of its flaws, when I was using Microsoft Outlook as my email client/personal information manage, Netcentric's Outlook add-on was my most successful "trusted system" (in David Allen Getting Things Done parlance). A year ago when I began a migration away from Outlook, I started looking for a web-based system that was cross platform and that would have the ability to also interact with a mobile device. I first used Nozbe, then moved to Toodledo. I've since moved to Gmail as my day-to-day email app and have struggled to manage these "systems" in parallel.

    I just put up a blog entry exploring this here: http://wp.me/pJPKS-4B

    Curious as to what others have come to on this subject...

  • #2
    google stuff can be ok

    Nice blog.

    I found gmail ok when I used it, but not great.

    I tried a method a bit like Kellys you linked to, but I wasn't really down with it, the multiple boxes didnt seem right for me. Check out lifehacker.com for a bunch of similar ways to use gmail for GTD.

    I preferred to use remember the milk, which had a nice way of being emailed tasks which would then go to the relevant context list. It has a fairly nice plugin for google calendar that gives you a little set of tasks for each day, which are great for day specific tasks. If I spotted a task that I needed to do in an email I would email RTM with the relevant stuff in the subject header (which is how it sorts incoming emails as tasks) and then they would be waiting for me.

    I tried to keep all my tasks in RTM, my calendar in google calendar (obviously) then just keep gmail for messages, which I would archive in nested folders.

    All in all tho it just didnt suit my workstyle so I didnt stick with it.

    Probably not all that helpful then. Sorry.

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    • #3
      What OS is on the computer (s) you are using to access the web? Are you still on Windows?

      rdgeorge

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      • #4
        Douglas Merrill, former CIO of Google thinks so in his book:
        Getting Organized in the Google Era: How to Get Stuff out of Your Head, Find It When You Need It, and Get It Done Right

        www.amazon.com/Getting-Organized-Google-Era-Stuff/dp/0385528175

        He starts out generally, then really plugs Google's stuff. He says he no longer affiliated with Google. I'm not finished the book, but he really is a "cloud" user.

        My concern with the cloud is safety/privacy.

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        • #5
          My organizing gets "cloudier" all the time but somehow I don't like Google very much - I don't even use their search engine. Privacy concerns.
          Safety? I trust "The Cloud" more than I trust my own hardware and skills: After all I'm not an IT professional, buy off-the-shelf computers; whereas in "The Cloud" there are (hopefully) people who know what they're doing with their high end harddrives and backup systems.
          Do you make your own airbag for your car, or do you trust professionals?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Jochen View Post
            My organizing gets "cloudier" all the time but somehow I don't like Google very much - I don't even use their search engine. Privacy concerns.
            Safety? I trust "The Cloud" more than I trust my own hardware and skills: After all I'm not an IT professional, buy off-the-shelf computers; whereas in "The Cloud" there are (hopefully) people who know what they're doing with their high end harddrives and backup systems.
            Do you make your own airbag for your car, or do you trust professionals?
            By safety I meant safety of data from falling into the wrong hands. Perhaps I should have just said privacy...

            Yes, syncing data can lead to corruption and hence data loss. Perhaps there is less risk in the cloud, but I'm not sure of that. I am also not an IT professional

            At my work, we have lost data (we are still not sure how) in "the cloud". So if you are trusting your data at only one location, good luck.

            I usually back up personal data at least in triplicate, offline.
            Last edited by tjhoo; 05-30-2010, 03:32 AM. Reason: add personal to last line

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            • #7
              You do not trust Google. So why do you trust anybody else?

              Originally posted by Jochen View Post
              My organizing gets "cloudier" all the time but somehow I don't like Google very much - I don't even use their search engine. Privacy concerns.
              You do not trust Google. OK. So why do you trust any other cloud service provider? Why do you trust your ISP (Internet Service Provider) who is (or will be) recording all your Internet traffic according to national or European Union rules?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by TesTeq View Post
                You do not trust Google. OK. So why do you trust any other cloud service provider?
                Like with 99 % of everything we like, or trust, or dislike... it's the first impression that counts. Dealing with A just feels better than dealing with B.

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                • #9
                  It was only impression...

                  Originally posted by Jochen View Post
                  Like with 99 % of everything we like, or trust, or dislike... it's the first impression that counts. Dealing with A just feels better than dealing with B.
                  Several years ago I invested in a company. First impression was great but it was only an impression...

                  So now I follow the Steve Gibson's (Security Now) advice:

                  TNO - Trust No One!

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                  • #10
                    For me, I trust Google as my search engine. But for emails I also use yahoo mail aside from gmail.
                    I love Google docs since for its ability to share documents to people. But sometimes it has problems when many people are editing one document. But overall I like it.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by TesTeq View Post
                      TNO - Trust No One!
                      I personally prefer the Trust but Verify version.

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                      • #12
                        How can you verify?

                        Originally posted by Oogiem View Post
                        I personally prefer the Trust but Verify version.
                        That's great, but how can you verify Google, Evernote, etc.?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by TesTeq View Post
                          That's great, but how can you verify Google, Evernote, etc.?
                          2 sorts of verification are needed, Data Integrity and Data Security.

                          Data integrity can be verified by using checksums, comparing files and multiple layers of backups reviewed regularly for potential errors and problems. Data integrity is easy to verify and not really an issue with any of the cloud systems, you can easily implement a verification system for the integrity of your data.

                          Data security can be verified by checking out the level of encryption provided, monitoring the security of the servers and using masking or code techniques if you send stuff in the clear. (Things like variations on the Navajo Code Talkers stuff from WW II, a code not a cipher, to mask what is really being stored and sent. 1 time pads are also an option but require more hand labor.) Evernote does provide a simple cipher encryption system as does MobileMe. But I won't put really critical data out in either service unless it's also coded into innocuous forms or hand encrypted on top of machine encryption. Instead I keep it in an encrypted volume on my own machine backed up to multiple places and in several separate physical locations. I do some coding on that stuff as well but I don't usually use any additional hand encryption or ciphers on it.

                          Google OTOH is not encrypted at all in any stage and is far more porous and insecure to me.

                          Another portion of data security is monitoring all your data windows (bank account, e-mail and other on-line transactions) for any unauthorized uses and also monitor the security bulletins regarding data breaches at those places.

                          Compartmentalization also helps. Don't put all your money into a single bank or single account, that way if one is compromised you have the others while you lock down the one in trouble and fix it. Don't put all your personal and private data into a single location, keep multiple copies and multiple access points and use multiple services with types of data separated by service.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Oogiem View Post
                            Google OTOH is not encrypted at all in any stage and is far more porous and insecure to me.
                            not sure whether you mean about your connection to them or how they store your data, but you now have an SSL option to connect to them, which i think is the default.

                            After they got cracked into...

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by bishblaize View Post
                              not sure whether you mean about your connection to them or how they store your data, but you now have an SSL option to connect to them
                              SSL only does minimal protection during data transit. No encryption of data while on their servers and no real security there.

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