GTD + Evernote = The Secret Weapon

I happened across Berin’s blog by way of WordPress’s “Read Blogs” feature. This is an interesting post on how he uses Evernote to manage getting things done; the “The Secret Weapon” system that he mentions and links to is something I’m going to take a good look at in the near future.

I’ve started to compile a list of different users’ Evernote filing and tagging techniques, and I hope to post my findings here in due course.

Why I moved back to Wunderlist

This post has been prompted a (short) Twitter conversation between myself and Craig Jarrow.

The story starts a little over 2 weeks before that conversation, when I went the other way. I had been toying with WunderKit but not getting any serious use out of it, so I spent some of my weekend moving my task lists and tasks into WunderKit. I was going to ditch Wunderlist and work exclusively from the new kid on the block.

The Wunderlist and Wunderkit application icons in a Mac dock

Wunder-full apps

One of the major drivers for the transfer to Wunderkit was to try and work out what Wunderkit actually is. Is it a replacement for Wunderlist? Is it a replacement for BaseCamp? Both? Neither? I was imagining it as a replacement for some or all of my other GTD and project management tools. (I now know better – read on.)

How to make the Pomodoro Technique excellent – a wish

Here’s what’d be really excellent – if my favourite Pomodoro application and my favourite Task Management application would combine forces.

I use the Pomodoro application to manage my time-boxing and Wunderlist for my To-dos. What I’m lacking is the ability to fully manage my pomodori online – currently, if one’s truly following the Pomodoro technique – I have to write each task down on a piece of paper (I use index cards for no reason other than I have several spare boxes since we moved our sprint planning online) indicating how many Pomodori I think it’s going to take. And then I use the Pomodoro application to record success, failure and interruptions.

Now, if Wunderlist included the ability to mark up each task with the number of pomodori and then run the pomodori, recording interruptions, etc., I’d be a really happy chappy.

The minimalist guide to planning 2012 and beyond

No New Year resolutions this year. In fact, I don’t do any any year. However I am resolved to creating a mind map of my goals and aspirations for this year and beyond. Yes, it’s a resolution; but it’s not a New Year’s resolution.

It’s something I’ve never done before and never really understood the point; I think because it’s so far removed from the day-to-day business of getting things done – to-do lists, projects and next actions. Plus, they’re very often cited in the context of a spiritual journey, which put me off & made me somewhat sceptical of their usefulness.

Wanted: Mailbox activity tool


I’m hoping that someone out there can help me find a tool or script that can show me ‘mailbox activity’.

In a nutshell, what I want to be able to do is:

  1. ‘Tell’ the script/tool which mailbox I want it to scan.
  2. The script runs and provides a histogram (or table – not fussed) of activity over time, so I can see where there have been more (or less) emails in and out that I’ve filed in that mailbox.

Environmentally, I’m interested in having this for Apple’s Mail application, running on an IMAP mail box. (So the script would probably have to talk to the IMAP server, as not all emails are necessarily available on the computer.)

I’ve tried a web search, but ‘mail activity’ tends to bring back a lot of noise and no substance.

Can anybody out there help me? Please leave a comment.


Found: Excellent GTD weekly review tutorials

Came across this great blog post – Getting Things Done – The Weekly Review Step By Step – Video Tutorial – this morning, and wanted to share it with you. Adan’s video tutorials are great, and I’m always interested to see how other people manage their GTD process.

This blog post addresses the area that I have the most trouble managing – the weekly review. It’s refreshing to hear that he takes around 2 hours to do this – I seem to take this amount of time but was never whether that was too long.

I hope you find it of use.

My Sync’s Blocked

Blocked sink

Credit: Kevin Dean (

So, I’ve got a Mac Mini at home, a Mac Mini at work and a MacBook Pro that I carry around with me for both. Oh, and an iPhone for personal use and a Nokia 5800 for work. I’m on Facebook, Plaxo, LinkedIn and MobileMe, and at work most colleagues have google calendars (as do I, for my work appointments) and use Yammer.

The question is “How do I sync all my contacts and appointments efficiently and effectively?“.

At the moment, everything’s screwed: my iPhone has duplicate (and even triplicate) contact entries; my work appointments are being duplicated on my laptop (but not anywhere else); the list goes on. (I won’t bore you with it.)

The reason for all the mess is this: I’ve made a stupid mistake.

I don’t have a consistent ‘master’ copy of the data – different machines are syncing in both directions and everything’s getting confused.

I’ve decided to ‘bite the bullet’ and start from scratch. So far:

  • I’ve stopped all my syncs on all my machines; nothing is talking to anything anymore.
  • I’ve stripped my laptop back and installed BusyCal (which is fab, BTW).
  • I’ve logged into MobileMe and ‘refactored’ all my contacts (which basically meant deleting a lot of duplicates created by my sync setup and redundant crap that Daylight had created – sorry MarketCircle, but I gave up on it).
  • I’ve forced my contacts down on to my laptop from MobileMe, and switched on syncing of these.

To do:

  • Similar to above on my other computers
  • Then iPhone
  • Then turn on Plaxo syncing (but on which computer? Need to determine which will be the ‘master’ – the changes should then just trickle through MobileMe to the others).
  • Then start thinking about the Calendars(!)

Watch this space.