I have got quite a few reviews stacked up for release on this blog and I cannot believe that I have never published a review of Evernote before.
I did review the Evernote iPhone application a few months ago. I love Evernote and it really is one of those applications that I use on a daily basis.
Evernote is one of the most well-known organizational programs on the internet and is a great choice for users looking for a GTD application or just a better, general tool to help sort out their daily lives.
Its “remember everything” slogan encapsulates the main goal of the app; to provide an easy and convenient method of taking digital notes from the user’s daily life.
Visually, Evernote is outstanding. The simple yet detailed aesthetic cultivated by the developers makes the program very welcoming and a joy to check into.
Evernote’s main features are all clearly laid out and easy to access for new users or those who only ever really use the program at a basic, surface level.
Each form of the system from the no-download web access to portable phone usage looks and navigates extremely well so users shouldn’t be worried about how their operating system or choice in medium will be able to handle it.
The developers of Evernote have obviously spent a lot of time packing the program with important features. Interface support is, frankly, quite astonishing.
As mentioned before, Evernote can be used on the web, on a Windows or Mac Client and also on mobile devices including the Apple iPhone. The option of signing in and using the whole array of tools without a download is also great for users who wish to access the program from various computers.
Some of the more innovative aspects of the application include incredibly simple copy and pasting from the web (both words and pictures) into Evernote and text searching within images.
The “Endless Tape” view through Evernote Windows is also interesting in that it allows users to scroll through all of the ‘memories’ they’ve pasted into the program — a great feature for those who want to make sure absolutely everything gets sorted from within their various files.
Once notes have been taken it’s also quite easy to organize, store and peruse your various work which makes it an excellent choice for those who want to incorporate the program into a GTD philosophy of work.
There aren’t too many faults worth mentioning with Evernote when considering the large amount of attention and continued work that has obviously gone into the program. While it may have a fairly overwhelming number of features this is ultimately a pretty difficult aspect of the program to consider negative.
The community attached to the program should help to make the learning curve relatively gradual and exciting. In future versions it would be good to see a greater emphasis on sorting information into more detailed categories, tasks and next actions although users are still able to make this happen on their own accord with a bit of effort.
The support is pretty remarkable and it’s obvious that the popularity of the program has lead to a great, helpful community. From Evernote’s homepage users can peruse press releases, news, updates, tours and manuals along with a quick video tour which highlights the main program features for the uninitiated.
RSS feeds, Facebook fan pages, FriendFeed and Twitter options all help to further increase the level of involvement with the Evernote world that dedicated fans can choose to get into as well.
Users will no doubt be impressed by Evernote and its wealth of features no matter what kind of organizational tool they’re interested in.
Whether accessed through the website, offline mode or via a mobile phone the program is a great bet for the busy user interested in introducing a little more order to their day to day lives.
Zenbe is a fantastic web based email application designed to cater toward Getting Things Done enthusiasts and those interested in productivity applications alike. It simultaneously mixes in-depth GTD organizational tenants with simple, easy-to-use e-mail grouping and daily work programming so that almost any audience is able to get as little or as much out of the app as they please.
The aesthetics of the program are fantastic, being beautifully designed while maintaining the functionality necessary for making the application something worth using as a time-saving device.
Every tool, window and icon is given a fresh, colorful look while simultaneously avoiding the very possible pitfalls of flashiness or cluttering. In its goal as an e-mail unification tool Zenbe also succeeds by outclassing any of the major sites in terms of look and usage.
Not only is there excellent functionality here but the look of Zenbe itself is also much more polished and pleasant to work from than the big players like Gmail or Hotmail.
Although this may boil down to a matter of personal taste it should definitely be noted that the designers have done an outstanding job of mixing impressive visuals with an ultimately simplistic, usable design.
Zenbe is packed with features that are sure to draw in a lot of potential devotees. The best overall idea is probably represented in the “Overview” mode which very easily ties every option into one single screen where the most heavily used tools are all displayed.
The easy navigation couples with other functions such as the aforementioned e-mail linking option (for Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, AOL and more) which allows for the removal of multiple inbox checking headaches.
E-mail itself is also much easier to sort and inboxes are easier to handle through Zenbe.
The program allows for file attachment browsing, viewing and organizing in a superior fashion than any competing e-mail service too, opting to let users deal with items away from the context of their original message.
Project sharing is easy to use through Zenbe as well and allows for collaboration on tasks, email, files, lists and calendars.
The best part of this system is probably found in the fact that Zenbe doesn’t require collaborators to even have accounts with their program making it so that sharing is truly accessible for anyone involved with a users work.
A comprehensive blog goes a long way toward keeping users up to date with all updates and news regarding Zenbe and this is a touch which should help fans to maintain faith in the program and its designers.
A forum is also hosted on the main page and lets new users and seasoned Zenbe users alike form a great community for discussing the program. Help and job posting sections are also listed to top off the solid interaction offerings.
There aren’t too many downfalls worth noting with Zenbe considering how many facets of a productivity application the developers have done right and no major complaints can be levied against the service with its alternative e-mail and e-mail grouping functions either.
For users interested in trying out a new productivity applicationZenbe is one of the best choices currently available. From superb visual design through to comprehensive features and a great support community, Zenbe is certainly worth a look.
I would love to hear of your experiences with Zenbe.
I have been away from home for most of this week in Basingstoke but I am glad to be back and back to a good Internet connection. I have a deadline for the 15th this week for my next Cisco Press eBook so the next few days will be busy but I am ahead of schedule so will be more than fine for time.
My second link is a link to the 15-Minute Solution for Getting Organized. This is a new blog that I have discovered and this is a great post on how to use 15 minutes to get organized. It is amazing what you can do with 5, never mind 15 minutes!
My third link is a link to the 25-50-25 rule to Getting Things Done. This is from the Abundance Blog and it correlates the 25-50-25 rule to the GTD methodology. Well worth the time investment.
My fifth and last link for this week is a link to an article titled You Can Do Anything but Not Everything from the Indian Dinosaur blog. This is a great, and lengthy post about a persons view on productivity and GTD at general. Great read.
Going to hit the gym now and then settle down. Hopefully get some more Making it All Work read as my reading has suffered over the past few weeks due to my eBook deadline.
Starting December 31st, 2008 we’ll take the 5 top nominations in each category and add 5 nominations from our list of iPhone bloggers, developers, and general web-celebrities for each category to come up with 10 nominated apps for each category. In addition, the 10 apps that get the most votes across all categories will compete for the title of Best App Ever. Please come back and vote for your favorite app in each category.
It is the final countdown to Christmas now, 4 days till the 25th and I am sure that everybody reading this blog will be totally organized and prepared for the festive season 🙂
I have just this minute received an email from Amazon stating that the David Allen Book, Making it all Work, has been delayed by the publishers and not due into the UK until the 15th of January 2009. Looks like my Christmas Reading is limited to the Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp as that has just shipped and will be with me before Christmas.
My second link is a link to Spootnik.net. Spootnik is a web based system for synchronizing your OmniFocus tasks with Basecamp from 37Signals. I use both OmniFocus and Basecamp so I am going to try this. Although the system does look like you have to sync all tasks and it does not appear to give you the option of choosing which tasks to sync. I will provide more details
My fourth link is a link to the Mind Depositor Index Card Templates – Nice little index cards ready for GTD for you to print. I know these have done the rounds on various blogs already but they are pretty neat if you use a paper based GTD system so check them out.
My fifth and last link for this week is a link to an article from the Times Online titled, Tough Times need a Cool Head and Clear Planning. It is a nice little article about surviving in these tough times and how productivity can help.
My next weekly links will be on the 28th of December when all the Christmas celebrations will be over and we will all be focusing on the New Year.
As it is the New Year, I will do a special New Year links section with all links focusing on planning for the New Year.
Hope you all have a very Merry, and of course productive Christmas!
I have covered Zenbe in a few other posts on this blog and I do have a review of the full web based Zenbe ready to publish as soon as I can get it on the site. I just thought I would review the little cut down Zenbe Lists for the iPhone as this is a good list manager that syncs with a web based application.
Zenbe is one of the best productivity program developers currently at work and has justly achieved a certain level of notoriety for their dedication to multiple platform releases. Now the addition of the ZenbeiPhone application, Zenbe Lists means that the task-organizing and daily planning so many computer users enjoy is finally coming to the most popular mobile device.
The iPhone version of Zenbe Lists is a great option for both those who already make regular use of the application from their desks and users who are unfamiliar with the entire program. As to be expected from the name, Zenbe Lists allows users to make simple run-downs of their to-do items.
The best features are found in the level of customization offered however as Lists provides fairly substantial sharing and sorting options. Users can collaborate on their lists with other Zenbe subscribers so that business associates or roommates can keep real-time access to their shared items. Marking finished list items is updated immediately which makes Zenbe Lists an extremely effective tool for keeping track of the day’s work.
Zenbe has also made Lists accessible from their official website as well which allows for easy uploading of data to iPhones. The portability and in-depth functionality of the program makes it ideal for blog updates too, a feature which should greatly extend the user base of Lists past the GTD crowd.
Overall Zenbe Lists is definitely one of the higher ranking iPhone productivity applications available for download, packing enough worthwhile features and quality design to warrant a spin from just about anybody.
I have just been to my childrens Christmas nativity and right after this I am heading to my fathers Christmas party at the Hilton in Leeds for yet more festive fun.
Productivity is more important than ever right now as we just have more things to do, and there is a prominent deadline that we have to meet. More about that, as I feel a post coming on later in the week about festive productivity.
I have just ordered myself two books to read over the holiday season. Now, these are not your traditional festive tales of snowmen and Santa Claus, but what would you expect from a productivity blogger?
The first book I ordered is The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp. I first heard about this book via 43Folders and as I normally like the book recommendations from Merlin Mann I thought I would order it on Amazon and read it for myself.
What makes someone creative? How does someone face the empty page, the empty stage and making something where nothing existed before? Not just a dilemma for the artist, it is something everyone faces everyday.
What will I cook that isn’t boring? How can I make that memo persuasive? What sales pitch will increase the order, get me the job, lock in that bonus? These too, are creative acts, and they all share a common need: proper preparation.
For Twyla Tharp, creativity is no mystery; it’s the product of hard work and preparation, of knowing one’s aims and one’s subject, of learning from approaches taken in the past. It’s a process undertaken every day. It’s a habit.
The Creative Habit is not merely a look inside the mind of a remarkable woman with remarkable skills, but a programmatic, inspiring, encouraging guide to help each of us achieve our fullest creative potential.
The second book is Making it all Work by David Allen. This is a book I am really looking forward to reading and it is supposed to start where Getting Things Done left. This is a productivity book that we are all looking forward to it and I must admit that this will be my first read as I want to get the book digested and provide the review as fast as I can.
David Allen’s Getting Things Done hit a nerve and ignited a movement with businesses, students, soccer moms, and techies all the way from Silicon Valley to Europe and Asia.
Now, David Allen leads the world on a new path to achieve focus, control, and perspective. Throw out everything you know about productivity- Making It All Work will make life and work a game you can win.
For those who have already experienced the clarity of mind from reading Getting Things Done, Making It All Work will take the process to the next level. David Allen shows us how to excel in dealing with our daily commitments, the unexpected, and the information overload that threatens to drown us.
Making It All Work provides an instantly usable, success-building tool kit for staying ahead of the game. Making It All Work addresses: how to figure out where you are in life and what you need; how to be your own consultant and a CEO of your life; moving from hope to trust in decision-making; when not to set goals; harnessing intuition, spontaneity, and serendipity; and why life is like business and business is like life.
I am looking forward to my Christmas reading. Do you have anything planned to read over the festive period? If so, I would love to hear about it.