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Advice on mobile system electronic setup needed

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  • Advice on mobile system electronic setup needed

    I'm new to this forum. I'm using an electronic setup (Palm Treo Pro + Outlook). I use Outlook only to answer emails and the rest of time I'm on my Palm with Windows Mobile.

    In my setup there're actions in the calendar (All-Day Events) and action lists (@Lists) in Tasks. When I'm in Doing mode, I start scrolling through my lists. I start with All-Day Events first. Some of them easy doable so I can delete them from my calendar when done. Some are not so easy.

    For example, today I had to get a report from my subordinate. I had the All-Day Event "Waiting for the report" in my calendar. I called him in the morning, got his "will do it today" answer but didn't get the report though. This All-Day Event remained in the calendar making me feel like it's not done and it prevents me to go to my other actions @Lists before I cross it off. Ideally I would like it disappear and come back again in ~3 hours so I could remind him again

    Ok. Now let's imagine I've solved the above issue and moving through my action lists. Here're a few topics I can't solve myself. First, I have to go through the context list and choose the most important NA to act on. But as the list could have 30 items on it, while reading I begin to miss the feeling of relative importance of next actions Plus sometimes it's not clearly seen what's the outcome of a particular next action (sure I remember the outcome when doing Weekly Review but when you're in a battle field you start to frget In addition to all of that I start to forget what actons were touched during the first run through the list and have to assess them again Ideally I would like the most important actions to outstand. And items that were acted to be moved to the end of the list.

    I'm not a programmer for Windows Mobile so feel like electronic GTD requires a lot of tuneup. Or maybe you can advice me how to solve all my issues with minimum handheld setup?

  • #2
    "I had the All-Day Event "Waiting for the report" in my calendar"

    Unless it absolutely must finish that day your probably better off having it on an "@waiting_for" list rather than your calender. You can use the built in reminder feature in outlook/tasks as opposed to using your calender for non day/time specific events or info.

    "the list could have 30 items on it"

    You might want to break down such a list into additional lists since 30 items on one list sounds a lot to me

    Hope that helps

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    • #3
      I have @Waiting For list that keeps ASAP items. I check it weekly. That particular report must be done today that's why it's on the calendar. And thanks for reminding me of the automatic reminder feature.

      As for 30 items they are all calls. I thought I can split them further into "Internal calls" and "Customer calls". Anyway it won't make my life easier as I have to go through all of them

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      • #4
        Have you tried making your review of "@waiting for" a daily instead of a weekly habit?

        This is particularly important if you have several projects or actions delegated to staff. Moreover, calendering "waiting for" items is a bit tricky because the deadlines you impose are mostly artificial since those deadlines are really someone Else's (as is the case in the example you cited).

        I'd scarcely use the calender for "waiting for" items and instead use the task reminder feature which stays highlighted until you dismiss it (in effect enabling you to really bug the person your waiting-on on a daily basis); and I'd also make it a habit to review my "@waiting for" folder daily instead of weekly.

        Best wishes

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        • #5
          This is probably not something you want to hear, but for what it's worth I'd dump Windows Mobile and get an iPhone. I used a variety of WM devices over the past ~5 years including a Palm Treo which I really liked, but Pocket Outlook is really not up to doing GTD very well in my opinion. And the small screen also makes it tough work.

          If you must stick with WM then take a look at Pocket Informant - probably the most comprehensive calendar/task management system on that platform. But really, WM (at least the version you are using) is pretty much a legacy platform and unless MS can get Windows Phone 7 a better takeup I'd be placing bets that it won't last much more than a few more years.

          If you can, take a look at the iPhone and use one for a few days. I guarantee you will never look back. There are some great apps available on the iPhone to help you with electronic GTD, e.g. Appigo Todo, Toodledo, Action Lists, etc. Many of these can sync with Outlook or to the cloud (e.g. Toodledo).

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          • #6
            I opened a new post to find the app that syncs with Outlook before I move. I like IPhone. But my company uses Outlook. All my calendar, notes and tasks are in Outlook. Due to security politics I can't use any clouds or internet sync so I need an application that syncs offline. Please advice.

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            • #7
              There is no direct iPhone>Outlook Tasks sync

              In my research and experience, there is no iPhone to Outlook Tasks direct sync. Since the iPhone was built without a Tasks application, it requires you get a 3rd party App to do this and a cloud service to sync it. I've yet to find a solution otherwise. You can locally sync these through iTunes though: Calendar, Contacts and now Notes (Notes was new to me when I just saw this.)

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