I recently read a post by Kelly Forrister "What makes a good Getting list manager?" But it wasn't until I read Eric Mack's analysis of her post that I made the connection that I should evaluate what I do.
Here is the criteria:
- Sorting lists by context
- Ability to assign a due date
- Portable for on the go access
- Easily accessible
- More attractive to you than repelling
- Doesn't force priority codes
- Place to capture additional notes
- Ability to search and sort in various ways.
- Robust enough to handle all of your stuff.
As I read through the list, I find that Outlook + Pocket Informant do the majority of the items pretty straight forward for me: sorting (#1); due dates (#2); easy access (#4); search & sorting (#8); and capture notes (#7) Neither seems to force priority codes (#6) but offers them if you want them.
I gain portablilty (#3) not so much from the list manager software but more from the platforms. The IBM X61 is the best PC laptop I've ever had, and I have it with me nearly all the time I need it. Outlook is usually always running and usually only a click or pen gesture away. If I'm going some place without my X61, then I have a good sync with the AT&T Tilt Windows Mobile Phone so I don't miss many @phone, @store, etc items. Using this setup to capture is pretty straight forward, but I actually use a combo of 3x5 cards and Moleskine for the most of my capture which is probably a topic for another post.
The part that is probably completely personality preference is #5: 'is this attractive enough to you to use it or not? ' It is probably also one of the most important questions that you need to tackle or you'll have a hard time getting things done.
What works for you?