Time Management and GetOnTracks 4


I’ve set up a “Tracks” server (http://www.getontracks.org for the system and http://www.bitnami.org for the actual virtual machine with the system pre-configured) in order to try and organize my time better. So far, it seems to be alright–except for the fact that the mail capabilities are not set up by default.

What I ended up doing was finding some back issues of FullCircle Magazine at their site (specifically Issues 9 through 16), and using those to configure the server for mail. I should know around 5:00 tomorrow morning, if it worked or not (since I have a cron job set up to mail my tasks to me every morning).

The nice thing is, the server is either Ubuntu-based or OpenSUSE-based. So, for me, it’s a familiar setup (choosing the Ubuntu one) and for people who’s jobs require them to run SUSE or another rpm-based system (like RedHat), it’s familiar to them. The first thing I did was apt-get update and apt-get dist-upgrade, to get the latest updates from Canonical.

Next, I installed Xfce (xubuntu desktop), so I could administrate it through a web browser. I installed webmin (http://www.webmin.com) which is a sourceforge project that allows you to administer a variety of servers (Tracks isn’t one of them, unfortunately) from a web browser.

So, how is Tracks?

Overall it’s a nice application. One annoyance that I found was that if you add a category (context), unless you refresh the page, everything that you add to the context results in a prompt about Adding the context. After you refresh your list, it’s fine. I would love to see appointments be included in a future release–but I understand that this is based on the GTD system (Getting Things Done), which is more loose than something like Franklin Covey’s system.

Ultimately I think a combination of this + Google’s Calendar would work (or something which integrates both systems into one). I would much prefer that Franklin Covey would release an updated version of their PlanPlus software (one that works with WINE or actually has a Linux version), but I don’t see this happening for two reasons: 1) They’re putting their eggs into the “Online” basket and 2) One of their developers in the past is SCO (yes, THAT SCO).

The nice thing about Tracks is this: If I were a coder (or knew one well enough), I can create the appointment function. And I can publish it as either an addon or commit it to the actual system itself. People can choose whether or not they want to use the feature.

As I play around with Tracks more (and tweak my server), I’ll post more about it. If you’re a Windows/Mac user, you can still use Tracks. In fact for Windows, it has Outlook Integration to help you. And they are/were working on Thunderbird integration as well.

Have a great day:)
Patrick.


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