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  • It looks like some of categories don't work for me...

    It looks like some of categories don't work for me. I started to notice that it happens to categories that are not connected to some time zones or relative events. At this point I have the following categories in use:

    @Call - telephone calls - check while driving (3 hours per day at min)
    @Computer - the stuff I can do at computer at home or at office - check after @Home or @Office as I have a comp in both locations
    @Home - stuff to do at home - check when at home
    @Office - stuff to do at office - check when in my office
    @Shop - stuff to buy - check when in a shop
    @Waiting - stuff I'm waiting for - look at Weekly Review and when my the most absent-minded collegues come to see me

    Plus bonus

    Projects - my projects - check at WR to add new NAs into the system
    Projects-Delegated - my subordinates projects - check during "Management during walking around" or when someone drops in or when I feel I need to check the status

    As you see all of the categories have relative event they are connected (check time or event) except for @Computer. I mentioned that @Computer category usually "falls through the cracks" because it's checked after @Home or @Office and has no relative event. The mentioned categories always have stuff to do so I actually usually don't come to @Computer stuff Do you have any suggestions on how to start using this category or maybe I should exlude it?

    Regards,

    Eugene.

  • #2
    I completely understand your dilemma.

    In my experience, you can use multiple contexts for an action.

    Especially if you have a laptop and can work in multiple locations, you may have some tasks that are @Computer but can be done either at the office or at home. In these cases, if I intend to do something on my notebook while at work, I use both @Office and @Computer. This way, they show up in both contexts and nothing falls through the cracks.

    Understand, though, that if you use a notebook, you will almost always have two contexts for your computer-based NAs.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Borisoff
      As you see all of the categories have relative event they are connected (check time or event) except for @Computer. I mentioned that @Computer category usually "falls through the cracks" because it's checked after @Home or @Office and has no relative event. The mentioned categories always have stuff to do so I actually usually don't come to @Computer stuff Do you have any suggestions on how to start using this category or maybe I should exlude it?
      I've seen posts from many, many people in this and other forums about this. Nearly all of them advocate dropping the @Computer category. Perhaps it would be better to try to separate these tasks into other categories. This may not work but maybe @Email or @Browser or something. Or if some of them are just idle websites that you may want to visit when you have time, you might have @LowEnergy for those times when you might do it. Probably you are the only one that can think of a good way to segregate it.

      Tom S.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Jason Echols
        I completely understand your dilemma.

        In my experience, you can use multiple contexts for an action.

        Especially if you have a laptop and can work in multiple locations, you may have some tasks that are @Computer but can be done either at the office or at home. In these cases, if I intend to do something on my notebook while at work, I use both @Office and @Computer. This way, they show up in both contexts and nothing falls through the cracks.

        Understand, though, that if you use a notebook, you will almost always have two contexts for your computer-based NAs.
        For me, I don't get that granular. If there is something that is @Computer, but I intend to do at work, it goes in the @Office category not the @Computer category (this is probably why I don't really have that many @Computer NAs).

        I agree that @Computer is probably an irrelevant category for most of us nowdays given the moble technology of current times.

        I pretty much either have or can have a computer with me at all times.

        Jim

        Comment


        • #5
          I completely relate, and to add an even further twist: I've dropped categories altogether. Or more accurately, my Projects are my categories. I work from home, so after a 8 months of trying on the @call and @work approach to categorizing to-dos, I realized one morning (about 6 months ago) that my approach to life was to categorize in terms of Projects. I think in terms of Projects ("I have a few minutes... which project needs tending to?). This was a jaw-dropping realization for me, and I saw the results in not only my stress levels and my productivity, but more importantly my peace of mind. It was as if the system finally made sense to me.

          The two normal "Projects" are

          @Downtown errands
          @Household chores

          All the rest are business projects:

          @Project: Increase sales on XYZ site
          @Project: Book sales

          ... and so forth. I tend to not have more than 5 biz projects at once, simply because it gets too conceptually overwhelming for me, so I try to squeeze to-dos into the existing biz projects if I can.

          Hard landscape stuff goes into Entourage without any category assignment, and all of it is assigned a popup window alert that jumps above any open window that I happen to have on my screen at the time.

          This approach of GTD certainly wouldn't work for the vast majority of people, but it sure put it all together for me.

          If any other Mac user is interested in how I use the rest of Entourage 2004 for GTD, let me know. I've been wanting to write up the system I use for awhile anyway.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by jkgrossi
            For me, I don't get that granular. If there is something that is @Computer, but I intend to do at work, it goes in the @Office category not the @Computer category (this is probably why I don't really have that many @Computer NAs).

            I agree that @Computer is probably an irrelevant category for most of us nowdays given the moble technology of current times.

            I pretty much either have or can have a computer with me at all times.

            Jim
            Agree that it is probably irrelevant. I still use it because it is still useful for me.

            Comment


            • #7
              I drill down my tasks a bit deeper in my @Computer context. I am a Network Admin for a small local muncipality so on my lists I have:

              @Website (for our main city website...http://www.cityofnorthport.org/)
              @Network (for any network checks, fixes, upgrades that I have to do)
              @Support (I am a 1-man IT Dept, so this is my desktop support context)
              @Servers (right now we only have 1 all-in-one Novell box, but in Projects I have...)

              Red Hat ES4 Webserver
              Windows 2003 Server

              These projects are for getting these 2 servers into production and are part of the bigger Project:

              Novell 5.1 Network -> Windows 2003 Network Migration

              ...moving our network from Novell 5.1 and Groupwise 6.5 to Windows 2003 and Exchange...it will be a LOOOONG project.

              You just need to be a little more specific in your @Computer context. I started like you and had @Computer, then I tried @Computer-Home and @Computer-Work, then I changed jobs to my current one with a lot more responsibilites so I had to fine tune my @Computer-Work context.

              Hope this helps out,
              Michael

              Comment


              • #8
                My Contexts

                I have always kept my contexts short and simple. The big benefit that GTD gives me is that I have one system that I can use (almost) wherever I am. When I am out and about I filter my PDA for Errands. When I am at home I filter my PDA or desktop for Home. And likewise for Office.

                Someone like DA, who travels all the time, would have very different needs from me. I don't bother with a Phone context. I just want to see what needs to be done at work and what needs to be done at home.

                My current contexts are:

                Office
                Waiting For
                Home
                Errand

                My system allows me to enter multiple contexts. So if there is a computer NA that I can do at home or office, I will enter both contexts.

                I no longer use the @Agendas context. I have a "contacts" field in every next action. Most next actions have a blank for contact. But if I am waiting for John to accomplish something or I want to mention something next time I am speaking to John, I enter "John" in the contacts field. Next time I am speaking to John I filter my list for contact=John.

                Comment


                • #9
                  An important lesson can be taken from this discussion: Tailor your contexts to your own needs. Everyone has a slightly different system, and that's okay.

                  To quote the Law of Pragmatism, "If it works, it's truth!"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    @Computer Category

                    Originally posted by jkgrossi
                    I agree that @Computer is probably an irrelevant category for most of us nowdays given the moble technology of current times.

                    I pretty much either have or can have a computer with me at all times.
                    Whatever works is great, and given the statement above, you might want to re-evaluate whether or not @Computer is a relevant context for you?

                    It depends upon what your other contexts are. If you have lots of next actions in @Office that could be in @Computer and you pretty much have you're laptop with you all the time, then you may be missing odd windows of time where you could complete next actions that should be on your @Computer list. Of course if you put those actions on @Anywhere then it may not matter.

                    I use @Computer as a context all the time and have an @Networked category as well. I may need to re-evaluate my contexts though now that I have upgraded from a Tungsten to a LifeDrive...

                    I save @Anywhere for things that don't require an electronic device for those times on airplanes when you have to shut down. This is the hardest context for me to keep active as I've had as much as 2-3 hours a day of time like this. The joys of travel...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This seemed like the most likely "thread"

                      And I didn't want to start a new one, concerning a similar subject. I am using the GTD for Outlook Plugin btw.

                      Concerning the @actions categories...
                      I know I can add "@actions"... is this adviseable? And are there any suggestions by some experieinced users on how you use this area..and actions added?
                      For example... I can see adding the following to "@actions"

                      @Email - response (or maybe @respond)
                      @Planning - so that I can schedule the planning time for a project
                      @Meeting - so I can schedule a meeting....
                      etc...

                      Just like everyone, I have alot of projects going on at one time. What I'm interested in is knowing how others might be organizing them. I am self employed IT tech support/consultant. I have multiple projects going with each Client. (I know...everybody does)
                      The first thing I 'attempted' to do is setup the projects by using the "Client" as a project...then the "sub projects" were broken into 5 main 'subject' matter projects. For example
                      Client 1
                      -------General
                      -------Network
                      -------Marketing
                      -------Planning
                      Client 2
                      -------General
                      -------Network
                      -------Marketing
                      -------Planning

                      And so on...and so on....

                      That's not really working as well as I'd hoped.
                      Am I making this too hard? Is the key to this system simply creating projects that stand on their own... even if there are 100 of them going at one time?

                      Or am I confused as to how this is to be used. I've read the documentation...and I've listened to the "Getting Things Done" book that I purchased from "Audible.com". .... three times now...
                      I've done the collection thing....and now I'm working through the processing part.

                      What about using the @action for Clients? I rarely have over 10 clients... but each one never has less than 10 projects, and some have over '20'.
                      Just thinking out loud though, and looking for feedback...
                      Perhaps the problem is that I have a tendency to think of everything as 'projects"...even if there are only 3 or 4 steps.
                      Any feedback is appreciated, even if it's to confirm me being a "Blunt Skull Member of The World is Flat Society."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Coming back to original problem

                        Jyst wanted to share my experience. I deleted @Computer category (as advices and put the stuff either to @Office (things to do at work time or at office) or to @Home (things to do at home or after work time). And I should say it works now better so I don't scroll over categories and work in the appropriate category. @Call still separate as it's mainly for outgoing calls that I do while driving.

                        Best regards,

                        Eugene.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Cya...and thanks for the fish

                          No need to reply or comment on my post. I've removed the software from my machine. Too many crashes... which kept me from getting things done.
                          I like the concept of the system though, and will continue to work with it.

                          Thanks...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I understood why I need @Computer category

                            Today I forgot to take my external hard drive where all the info is kept to my office. And I understood how I can start using @Computer category

                            As I told I splitted my home and work NAs: home goes to @Home and work goes to @Office. Now I decided to return @Computer for NAs that I can do at the office only at computer. And that's allows to exclude computer NAs when forget a hard drive So first thing I look through @Office category for all non-computer related stuff (meeting people, collecting stuff etc - people are high priority) and then go and check @Computer. So it should work now.

                            PS I think I could make it other way like : @Work-Noncomputer and @Work-Computer. Even maybe deeper: @Work-Email, @Work-Computer, @Work-Noncomputer but that's too much of categories number so I would stay with the above mentioned

                            I will keep you informed if that's a new life for @Computer

                            Regards,

                            Eugene.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Borisoff
                              Today I forgot to take my external hard drive where all the info is kept to my office. And I understood how I can start using @Computer category

                              As I told I splitted my home and work NAs: home goes to @Home and work goes to @Office. Now I decided to return @Computer for NAs that I can do at the office only at computer. And that's allows to exclude computer NAs when forget a hard drive So first thing I look through @Office category for all non-computer related stuff (meeting people, collecting stuff etc - people are high priority) and then go and check @Computer. So it should work now.

                              PS I think I could make it other way like : @Work-Noncomputer and @Work-Computer. Even maybe deeper: @Work-Email, @Work-Computer, @Work-Noncomputer but that's too much of categories number so I would stay with the above mentioned

                              I will keep you informed if that's a new life for @Computer

                              Regards,

                              Eugene.
                              Eugene,

                              That's a great distinction!

                              Jim

                              Comment

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