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Web App Review: Let’s Remember The Milk in 2011

Web App Review: Let’s Remember The Milk in 2011

Remember the Milk has been a staple to-do list web app for many years now and has been known to be one of the best and even most reliable. It’s known for a clean simple interface and sometimes forgotten about power under the hood. Remember The Milk (RTM from here on out) can also be used for GTD (you know, if you are into that sort of thing), yet flexible enough for any other productivity system you can throw at it.

But, even with such a excellent and stable track record, RTM has made some significant improvements in the past year with the most notable being their brand new iPad app.

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Look and feel

At first glance RTM is a simple and very clean interface. If you are a white background, dark text kind of person, then RTM is the type of interface you will enjoy. Users are given an Inbox and Sent items list at first blush and adding todos to your inbox is extremely easy. Once tasks are created you can check the task and change the due date, the repeat of the task, a time estimate, tags, location of the task, or a URL. Completing the task is as simple as checking it and pushing the complete button.

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    You can also assign the task to a different list but it is somewhat counterintuitive. You first must create a new list by going to Settings and the Lists tab. This is a good place to create your contexts if you are a GTD type. Once you have some lists you can go back to your tasks by choosing the Tasks option. Adding a task to a list is done by checking the task and clicking on the More Actions dropdown and choosing the list to switch it to. Even after many years of using this workflow, I still feel that it is unintuitive and could be changed to allow for a drag and drop to tab type of interface.

    The task settings “float” to the side of your lists and with the settings bar you can change an individual task’s settings or even check multiple tasks and group the settings together. Also, the note field is on the right where you can add multiple notes per task. You can also select tasks by choosing all of them, the ones that are due today, due tomorrow, overdue, or none at all. This is a nice way to mass edit settings or even complete or postpone a set of tasks.

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    Features

    Remember The Milk is truly a full-featured web and mobile application with versions for the web, iOS, Android, and even sync with Outlook. Let’s take a quick look at some of the many awesome features:

    • Full web, iOS, Android, and Outlook for Windows synchronization ($25 a year premium account needed for some pro features)
    • iPad version with a truly unique interface and user experience
    • iOS and Android version take advantage of location based tasks and alert you based on your user settings
    • “Unlimited” list and task creation (I haven’t fully tested this, but I have never had an issue with too many tasks or lists)
    • “Smart Lists” allow you to save searches based on any criteria that a task may have allowing you to create customized views of your lists
    • Awesome “smart add” feature which allows you to add a task straight to a list, add a due date, tag, or even location while you are typing it in
    • Offline support with the deprecated Google Gears
    • Add tasks by Twitter or email
    • iCal service, RSS feeds for your lists, and the ability to create public lists for others to share
    • Active user community and developers that aren’t too shabby

    Gripes

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      Like I said, RTM is a full-featured and completely a mature web and mobile application. There are only a few gripes that I still have to this day, including no subtasks or linking of tasks into projects, no start dates to help hide repeating tasks, annoying logo that can’t be hidden at work without an add-in for your browser, and out of control tabs for your lists.

      Besides those four things, I have to say that RTM is still one of the best web apps out there for helping you stay productive. The one thing that RTM has over many other task management apps on the web is its maturity and speed. The app is really darn fast while using Firefox or Chrome and hardly (if ever) crashes on me. Another thing is that sync is incredibly fast between multiple devices.

      Also, with the new iPad app and its gorgeous new interface, RTM is definitely worth another look if you haven’t checked it out in a while. So, head on over to the RTM homepage and sign up for a free account or login to your old one if you haven’t been around for a while.

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      Published on October 9, 2018

      Evernote vs OneNote: Which Improves Your Productivity Better?

      Evernote vs OneNote: Which Improves Your Productivity Better?

      Note-taking is useful in helping improve your memory and increase your productivity at work. By writing down notes, you have something tangible you can refer back to, remember what needs to be done, and regain control of your work throughout the day.

      There are thousands of different note-taking apps you can use on your desktop or mobile device. The two most popular are Evernote and Microsoft OneNote because they are incredibly efficient and effective that each has a following of extremely loyal users and advocates.

      So if it comes to Evernote vs OneNote, how do they improve productivity?

      An overview of Evernote and OneNote

      First, an introduction to the two platforms. Evernote is an app that lets you store content, take down notes, write lists, and organize all of them. While these are stored in Notebooks, the whole concept behind this productivity app is more like a Universal Inbox where you can save everything you’ve collected so you can quickly find it when you need them through the use of tags.

      Microsoft’s OneNote, on the other hand, works very much like a digital version of the notebooks you used to carry around in school. Aside from storing all your notes and different types of content you’ve collected, you can also organize them into sections, pages, and containers.

      Each of these apps offers their users a host of features to help them improve their productivity and memory. Also, because no app is perfect, each also has their strengths and limitations.

      To get a better idea of which app will be your best choice, we’ll be comparing the two based on three key features most used by their users: collecting information, note-taking, and mobility.

      Collecting information

      Both the OneNote and Evernote come with their own web clipper extension that allows you to quickly collect and store information from different websites as you find them.

      Both give you the option to choose whether you’d like to save the entire web page as is, a simplified version without the ads, or just a section of the page. You can also add some notes before saving them to make it easier for you to remember why you “clipped” that particular resource.

      Since OneNote gives you more structure to organize your content, its web clipper allows you to choose not just which notebook to save the details, but also what section within the notebook.

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        Source: OneNote.com

        Evernote gives you the option to add tags to your web clippings before you save it, so it’s easier for you to search for it later.

        Premium users get access to Evernote’s Related Results feature located in its Options section. When you search on Google, Evernote will launch a secondary search that will show all the notes related to the keyword you used in searching for information.

          Source: Zapier.com

          This feature, according to Jeremy Skillings, President of Youcanbefound.com, is beneficial because it lets you know what information you already have stored in your notes.

          “In some cases whenever I do my research, I find out through this feature that I already have the exact information I need stored in my Evernote account. That alone cuts back a significant amount of the time I spend on projects.”

          Note-taking

          Both of these productivity apps allow you to create and format your notes to create rich documents. Among these features include changing the font size and color, adding tables, and inserting media files.

          Evernote’s note-taking features are very similar to a Word document in that it’s very structured concerning how you input your notes.

            Professionals who need to be able to build and access well-structured docs in the field make up much of Evernote’s loyal fanbase. One such 2-year user in the real estate field, Anthony Gilbert of RealFX.com, liked the formatting options, but admitted that there were still some downsides to the rigidly formatted approach.

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            While he enjoyed the features, his personal experience with using it in the field revealed that the formatting features,“mean that if you need to change parts of your notes around, it can get tedious”. He continued, “the formatting features are quite finicky, so you may need a bit of patience to get the end results you are looking for.”

            Professionals who need to be able to build and access well-structured docs in the field make up much of Evernote’s loyal fanbase. One such 2-year user in the real estate field, Anthony Gilbertof RealFX.com, liked the formatting options, but admitted that there were still some downsides to the rigidly formatted approach.

            Structuring your notes properly from the get-go can have an effect on your productivity. A blank slate can sometimes be puzzling. Evernote allows the ability to use battle-tested templates and workflows that save you time. They can provide inspiration and structure on what’s possible.

            On the other hand, OneNote gives its users more versatility and flexibility in the way notes are created. You can click at any area of the page and begin typing. If you need to move things around, you can drag and drop sections of your notes to the right place.

            On the other hand, OneNote gives its users more versatility and flexibility in the way you create your notes. You can click at any area of the page and begin typing. If you need to move things around, you can drag and drop sections of your notes to the right place.

              Source: Lifehacker

              Also, it gives you the option to create Templates that you can use to layout your page properly, so all you’ll need to do is to fill in the information.

                Source: MakeUseOf

                This is a particularly handy feature that stood out to many of the people who shared their love of OneNote with me. Steve Lionais, longtime user and Co-Founder & CEO of Dr-Bill.ca, claims that this feature helped him build his business by affecting his memory in a powerful and helpful way.

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                “This [feature] is what makes OneNote great memory retention app,” he said of the templates. “I find that I remember things more when they are arranged in a certain way. OneNote allowed me to do that for my meeting and presentation notes, so I don’t have to spend a lot of time trying to find the next point!”

                However, what really makes OneNote the winner of this round is its ability to allow you to embed media files from other sources like Youtube. In addition to including the link, OneNote launches a media player, allowing you to watch the video or listen to the audio file directly from the page where you saved it.

                  Source: Windows Central

                  Mobility

                  Evernote and OneNote can be used both on desktops and mobile devices. At the same time, they provide their users with the ability to sync the content from one device to the other.

                  Judging which of the two productivity apps is best here is quite tricky because it greatly depends on several factors. One of these is the operating software you use.

                  Many of the power users we asked were using iOS, and that put some points toward Evernote. Greg Reese of AmeriEstate.com found himself frequently using the built-in camera option (and other iOS integrations) to manage his daily duties as President.

                    Evernote’s camera also integrates with Post-It, Moleskin notebook pages, and business cards. When you take a photo of any of these, the camera will capture the information and format this for Evernote so that it’s quick to find it when you search.

                    OneNote, on the other hand, dominates the Android environment. In addition to the app, Android users will also find a OneNote floating badge on the side of the home screen. So you can take notes on the go very quickly.

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                      Source: MS Power User

                      Another factor to consider is the cloud storage you use. For you to sync OneNote across different devices, you’ll need to first set up an account with OneDrive, which is Microsoft’s cloud storage service.

                      “This is something that Evernote users like me don’t have to worry about,” according to Matt Willens, Head Attorney for Willens Law Offices. “Whether you use a free account or one of their paid plans, you can immediately sync your devices without having to get a separate cloud storage account.”

                      The drawback here is the amount of storage and number of devices that you can sync. Free users are only given 60MB of storage space and can sync up to two devices. If you need more storage space, you’ll have to get the paid plans.

                      Which app is better for improving memory and productivity?

                      The honest—and most straightforward—answer is:

                      It depends on you.

                      While Evernote and OneNote have their strengths and weaknesses, how well it will help improve productivity and memory greatly depends on what works best for you.

                      If you find that you’re able to work best and remember things more using visual cues, OneNote will be the best productivity app to use. However, if you consider the speed and ease of finding the information you need as your top priority, Evernote will be your best option.

                      Since both productivity apps have free versions, you can give both a try and see where you’re most comfortable. In the end, the right productivity app to use is one that complements the way you work and do things rather than dictating to you how you should get them done.

                      Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

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