Nobody has ever accused me of being the most organized person. I don’t carry a PDA, a dayplanner, or even a notebook/moleskin. It’s pretty much just Outlook at work, and a lot of Post-Its at home. But recently I’ve discovered two applications that help me remember all the thoughts that flit in and out of my mind. This is in turn saves me money indirectly with less late fees and missed opportunities. Both have been around a while, but were new to me:
First up is IwantSandy, which is an assistant that you can interact with by sending e-mails. She communicates back to you via e-mail or SMS text messages.
Say you want someone to remind you for your doctor’s appointment at 4pm next Monday. No problem, just send an e-mail to Sandy:
Remind me about Dr. appointment at 4pm next Monday.
Sandy will send you an e-mail or text message to do just that, both in a daily digest and a specific reminder 15 minutes (by default) before the event. Most casual language is recognized. You can set repeating reminders easily:
Remind me to pay off Citi 0% credit card on 4/24 @monthly
You can also tag items for easy organization, add contacts, and or create To-Do lists.
Remind me to call contractor back in 3 hours @newhouse
Remember Melissa Valiant (415) 555-1212 firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember my United mileage number is A4362215 @travel
Remind me to refill my prescription tomorrow @todo
You can even “snooze” by replying to a reminder with “snooze 4 hours”. Lots more examples here. I live by my e-mail and I have unlimited text messages, so this system has been working out well for me. (Text messages can be better if you are under e-mail overload.) I basically just shoot Sandy an e-mail anytime a thought pops into my mind.
Remind me to blog about Sandy @daily @blogposts
Remind me to sign up for Citibank 25,000 mile banking bonus @daily @todo
Try it! It’s free and even a bit fun at first. I’m not quite sure how or even if they intend to make money. More organized people might not need Sandy, but I learn a new feature every day. For example, if I e-mail Sandy from any computer with “lookup blogposts”, I get a reply with all my post ideas. Very handy while traveling.
Now what if you’re away from your desk? Jott is a service that convert your voice into text and sends it as an e-mail. It’s like having your own secretary transcribe your thoughts.
On top of that it, even integrates with Sandy. Just add Sandy as a contact, and call her. From the EfficientMD:
Let’s say you’re on your mobile phone and a colleague tells you about a meeting you have to attend tomorrow at 3pm. You’re walking quickly and don’t want to slow down, so you call Jott’s toll-free number and have this conversation:
“Who do you want to Jott?”
“Sandy. Is that correct?”
“Remind me about meeting tomorrow at 3pm.”
And that’s it. Sandy/Jott will email you a confirmation to ensure that they’ve heard you correctly (which in my experience, is practically 100% of the time), and then tomorrow before 3pm, you’ll receive a text message reminding you about the meeting.
Together, it’s like having your own personal administrative assistant. She’ll remind you about stuff, remember important contact and numbers, and you can just e-mail or call her like a regular person. You don’t need to install any new software or buy any new gadgets.
By Jonathan Ping | Simple Living | 4/23/08, 6:48am