Simplicity Rears It’s Pretty Head

So we’ve talked about persistence, and now we need to talk about the other big factor that makes the new iPod different from the palm. That other thing is simplicity.
David Allen likes to point out that a lack of simplicity makes it easy and likely that you will walk away from a system, be it a filing or any other one. He likes to point out, rightly, that the level of complexity of the system needs to match that of the reality that it is meant to address. A mismatch increases the likelihood of abandonment.
When I got my PDA, the internet was a different place. I had a Netscape account for personal email and a different one for work. There were no good web-based calendar apps that I can remember nor any to do list apps. I was on my own, and that’s not a good place for me to be.
There was also the fact that I had multiple platforms to deal with as well. I had a desktop at home, another at work, and the PDA between. I couldn’t sync the PDA at work, so I couldn’t have its data in front of me on the screen reminding me of my tasks. Syncing the PDA with my email account would have been silly, because I didn’t really get that much mail. It also would have been a hassle connecting cables, running software that I would have had to pay for.
This brings me to my next post topic, how the Internet has eliminated the advantages of paper based planners.
See you next time.

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