New Favorite App

As I continue to refine how I use my iPad in my daily life (both work and non-work) I’m constantly on the look out for new apps that will help me be…well…be more.  More productive, more relaxed, more fun (yeah like that’s gonna happen), more efficient.  You get the idea.

In in this process, I tend to try out lots of apps.  I do mean LOTS.

Nothing will get me to try out a new app quite like a “Free” version.  Love that.  I don’t mind one bit if it’s limited in some way.  LImited feature set?  No problem.  Thirty-day trial.  Bring it on.  However, even a lack of a free version won’t stop me from trying an app if it looks promising.  That is assuming it’s not more than about 3 or 4 bucks.  More that that, and I’ve got to think about it.

Lately my quest has been to find an app that helps me manage meetings better.  Because, here’s the deal.  I go to a lot of meetings.  

Too many if you ask me.  Unfortunately no one does.  So I’m stuck.

So I’m looking for something to help me manage them better.  Basically I want a couple things.  I’d like to be able to take notes on the meeting in a simple and easy way.  I’d like to be able to create action items for follow up either by myself or my staff.  I’d like to be able to notate certain parts of my notes as important.  I’d like to be able to get those action items into my GTD application (OmniFocus), and I’d like to be able to archive the notes for as long as I need them.  

See?  I’m not asking for much.  Really.

The other day I read an article about an app called ActionNotes by a company named Netwalk.  It seemed to offer some intriguing functionality so I thought I’d try it.

Unfortunately, no free version, but at $2.99 it fit within my “try it for the hell of it” comfort zone.  

After two weeks of using it, I can say this…

I’m still using it.

This is the first app that even comes close to being what I want in an app to help me manage my meetings and such.  So, let’s go down the check list.

Ability to take short and simple notes.  Check.

Ability to quickly and easily create action items.  Check.  (actually a really cool feature here)

Ability to highlight areas of notes for emphasis.  Check.

Ability to get the action items into my GTD.  No

Ability to archive the notes.  Check.

4 out of 5 is pretty damn good in my book.

The app works great and while I do have some gripes about it, they are minor.  For instance, I’d love to be able to change the colors of the tabs.  Or, for that fact add more tabs.  (Tabs are how the app organizes things).  But those are minor as you can change the text label on the tabs.  

Once done with a meeting you can email yourself a really nicely formatted HTML email with all your notes and your action items in it.  So that’s a plus.  The only problem is that I still have to manually enter them into my GTD.  Again, on the minor side.

So, for right now, I think I’ve got a really good fit.

Check back in a month and see if I’m still using it.

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