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Reducing my PIM/Knowledge/Writing Tools

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Posted by Dominik Holenstein
Mar 30, 2007 at 09:40 AM

 

I have used 3-4 tools for PIM, Knowledge Management and writing so far.
But it wasn’t really productive in the sense that the job has to be done in the evening.
So I have decided to remove these two applications from my laptop at work:

IdeaMason v3
WhizFolders Deluxe

Don’t understand me wrong: I still like these two applications and they are still present on my PC at home.

What is then the replacement for these two tools?
Ultra Recall Professional v3.

I don’t need scientific/academic citation at work and I managed to create a database in UR for software manuals I write for the end users. It is perfect in combination with Word and a pdf printer driver. Further, I use it to manage my day to day work (tasks, notes, time logs, file management, project mangement, web browsing and research, web clipping etc.).

UR is my workhorse now. It took me around one year to understand its potential and I think this is the major issue: the learning curve. I remember when I first installed and started UR around two years ago. My first impression was ‘too complex and no very intuitive ...’ and removed it straight away form my hard drive. But a second and third look and issues with other tools (ADM etc.) reminded me of UR and so I started using it with v2.

Do you have similar experiences with other software? What is you daily workorse?
Some of the previous post in this forum let me assume that some members have switched or are switching to One Note 2007.

Dominik

 


Posted by Alexander Deliyannis
Mar 30, 2007 at 10:07 AM

 

Dominik Holenstein wrote:
>UR is my workhorse now. It took me around one year to understand its potential
>and I think this is the major issue: the learning curve. I remember when I first
>installed and started UR around two years ago. My first impression was ‘too complex
>and no very intuitive ...’ and removed it straight away form my hard drive. But a second
>and third look and issues with other tools (ADM etc.) reminded me of UR and so I started
>using it with v2.


My experience was similar when I first tested UR in summer 2004 (!) I then turned to the now discontinued Hyperclip.

I went back to UR after all the positive reviews I read about it at outliners.com. When I re-installed UR I changed the default layout to show just the data explorer tree on the left and the item details on the top right, with all the rest of the panes as tabs at the bottom right. Things moved swiftly from then on. I learnt to use most of tools along the road, while using UR productively.

Interestingly, in newer installation of UR the default view is much simplified and intuitive; apparently we were not the only ones who found it too complex. I think the learning curve is not steep, as long as one can choose to focus on the main concept, i.e. a classic two-pane outliner with most of the functionality one could ever wish for thrown in.

I now use UR as my starting point for any kind of project; all the background is maintained there, in its original file form, with my notes as imported Brainstorm files. Brainstorm is my main writing environment; after finalising texts they go to Word for layout; when the deliverables are completed, they are saved back to UR, so I have full documentation for the project.

I used to wish for Brainstorm to work as an OLE server so that I could use it from within UR; however, I now find it much easier to concentrate if I am within a separate application for writing, rather than having the data explorer and other similar stuff around me.

alx

 


Posted by Thomas
Mar 30, 2007 at 11:31 AM

 

Same dilemma, still in trial period considering giving up on IdeaMason, though it’s very nice, and implementing same workflow in MyInfo (as at the moment I don’t need citations either). Though it’s MyInfo only with the prospect of MyInfo 4 coming soon.

UltraRecall is a smart piece of software, but I would keep most of my tasks and reminders in MyLife Organized anyway, so that’s not a selling point. And it doesn’t allow editing the webpages imported anyway.

MyBase seemed promising, very lean and quick, but it’s like something is missing. Particularly import and export features. They have seemingly plenty, but not those I need.

 


Posted by Jan Rifkinson
Mar 31, 2007 at 01:12 PM

 

Dominik Holenstein wrote:
>[snip] UR is my workhorse now. It took me around one year to understand its potential
>and I think this is the major issue: the learning curve. I remember when I first
>installed and started UR around two years ago. My first impression was ‘too complex
>and no very intuitive ...’ and removed it straight away form my hard drive. But a second
>and third look and issues with other tools (ADM etc.) reminded me of UR and so I started
>using it with v2.
> >Do you have similar experiences with other software? What is you
>daily workorse? [/snip]

My experience mirrors yours, Dominik. I am relieved to say that for the first time in many years, I have moved all my data from FF, IE, Zoot, EccoPro, ADM & ADC into one place—URp. I’m still on the learning curve but I’m finding the current version more intuitive than earlier versions.

I feel relieved that it’s all in one place & have some level of confidence because of URp’s feature set. OTOH I’m holding my breath that doing all this work was the right decision. ADM was such a disappointment but I’m so glad to be free of it at last.

Do I wish URp had a some other bells & whistles? Yes, but IMO, even in it’s present form, it’s a very capable knowledgebase & has become the electronic center of my day-to-day life (except for photgraphy).


Jan Rifkinson
Ridgefield, CT USA

 


Posted by Kenneth Rhee
Mar 31, 2007 at 01:46 PM

 

Dominik and others,

It’s interesting that we all share a similar experience.

I mentioned my experience elsewhere; so, I won’t go into a lot of details here, but several short tries in UR over the years until I gave it an extended trial, and now I’m hooked.

It’s now my main information storage for everything except bibliographic/writing software (IdeaMason).

Ken

Dominik Holenstein wrote:
>I have used 3-4 tools for PIM, Knowledge Management and writing so far.
>But it wasn’t
>really productive in the sense that the job has to be done in the evening.
>So I have
>decided to remove these two applications from my laptop at work:
> >IdeaMason
>v3
>WhizFolders Deluxe
> >Don’t understand me wrong: I still like these two
>applications and they are still present on my PC at home.
> >What is then the
>replacement for these two tools?
>Ultra Recall Professional v3.
> >I don’t need
>scientific/academic citation at work and I managed to create a database in UR for
>software manuals I write for the end users. It is perfect in combination with Word and a
>pdf printer driver. Further, I use it to manage my day to day work (tasks, notes, time
>logs, file management, project mangement, web browsing and research, web clipping
>etc.).
> >UR is my workhorse now. It took me around one year to understand its potential
>and I think this is the major issue: the learning curve. I remember when I first
>installed and started UR around two years ago. My first impression was ‘too complex
>and no very intuitive ...’ and removed it straight away form my hard drive. But a second
>and third look and issues with other tools (ADM etc.) reminded me of UR and so I started
>using it with v2.
> >Do you have similar experiences with other software? What is you
>daily workorse?
>Some of the previous post in this forum let me assume that some
>members have switched or are switching to One Note 2007.
> >Dominik
> > 

 


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