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Although I am not new to the Mac or the never-ending hunt for the perfect organizer, I am relatively new to OmniOutliner (and only just the other day started using KGTD, which I love!!!). So, with a certain degree of Omni newbie humility, here are some thoughts:

1. Elegant and efficient vs a work avoidance tool. There have been many great ideas submitted here, some that I agree would be wonderful to have in an organizer app. However, some strike me as being, well, a bit much. In my opinion, there are some people (certainly nobody here) who spend far too much time organizing their work and very little time actually doing the work. Or, put another way, with a slight variation to an old adage: Life happens while you're organizing.

I used to work with someone who had a very minimalist approach to organization. (Boy, is that an understatement!) He had so much going on in his many businesses and life, I for one could never keep up (not many could). Anyway, his two "organizational tools" were one of those Month-at-a-Glance deskpad calendars and a small notebook that he carried around with him. That's it! I remember many a meeting where you would look around the table and some would have their laptops out, others their PDA's. But him, just a pen and that small notebook. And he would be the one who would get things done far ahead of the rest of us. (That's when I learned a valuable lesson: When in meetings, always be mindful of the one with the small notebook. He/she is probably the one to focus on.) I know it's a matter of whatever works: this man's "system" or yours. But for me, I want something that will support me in my work, not be the work.

2. A hammer is sometimes just a hammer!
We've all seen this, in this forum and others, where some want a certain product to do things that it was never intended to. All things to all people! But, probably like many of you, I just want an app to do elegantly and efficiently what it was designed to do. Whenever an app goes beyond that, then "software bloat" becomes a huge issue. I sense that Omni is always mindful of this, based on their products that I have tested and used so far. I hope that OminFocus will end up the same way: elegant, easy-to-use, fast and efficient. If somebody out there wants a backscratcher in their software, well, then, uh, buy one! But, please, let's keep OminFocus as clean and as focused (sorry!) as possible.

3. The beauty of a gentle learning curve. I am one of those weirdos who actually enjoys reading manuals (software and others) from cover to cover. But, when first opening any application, I also want to be able to figure it out pretty quickly too without the manual. (One of many reasons why I use a Mac.) That has been my experience with each of the Omni products I have tried. But there have been other apps (we all have our horror stories, I'm sure) where that has not been the case. One that comes to mind for me? LifeBalance. (I mention it here only because someone posted that they wanted OmniFocus to use it as some kind of a model. Don't, OmniPeople! Please, don't!) I tried LB last year, and abandoned it after one month. My overall impression is that it is one of those products which is far more interested in helping users organize their lives rather than helping them live it. So, whenever I read here that some want OminFocus to contain things like project value ratings, relativity weighting tools (my words, not yours), scoring models, mood ring values, astrological chart comparisons, and so on, I want to throw up (I schedule it of course!). As I said above, I think the good people at Omni have a very grounded sense of precisely what it is they want their products to do. I hope that continues with their design of OmniFocus.

Anyway, thanks for reading. Like you, I cannot wait for the OminFocus debut. And, to the OmniPeople, thank you for all that you do. Your products are powerful, simple and elegant. Please keep it that way.

Regards,
John
 
 


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