Feb 20, 2017
In the edition 5 of my book Total Workday Control Using Microsoft Outlook (due out in late April 2017), I’ve removed the pages about the Master Tasks view from Lesson 12 to make room for other materials. Reason: these days the Master Tasks view is a very low-priority view in MYN. But in case you are still interested in using this view, I’ve posted the text from those pages in this article, so read below if you need this information.
Feb 16, 2017
Here’s an article with a good rundown of the latest Windows tablets that are out there. https://www.cnet.com/news/microsoft-surface-pro-5-alternatives/
As you know I am a fan of Windows tablets because they can run a full desktop copy of Microsoft Outlook. You really need a full desktop copy of Outlook to enable the MYN system—don’t try to use a watered-down app or web version of Outlook for that.
However, I am not a fan of the tablet apps available on Windows tablets. The app selection is still pretty lame. I’d only get one because of Outlook, or just to get a thin and lightweight laptop (see next point).
Most of the machines in this list are really hybrids: combination laptops and tablets. So they are not really light enough to replace a ten-inch iPad, say. Two exceptions in the list: The Huawei Matebook, which at 1.4 pounds is the same weight as my favorite Windows tablet the Surface 3 (non-Pro). And the Samsung Galaxy TabPro S which weighs 1.5 lbs. It’s good to see these two because Microsoft’s small Surface 3 line (non-Pro) appears to be discontinued. But even the other, heavier, hybrids listed here still offer usefulness, and most in this list have an active digitizer pen option.
Again, check out the article here: https://www.cnet.com/news/microsoft-surface-pro-5-alternatives/
Jan 28, 2017
I recently updated my Mac to OS X Sierra and decided to test the AppleScript in Outlook Mac 2016, the script that converts e-mails to tasks. I had to reinstall it, but it is definitely working now. I placed my updated instructions for getting it installed at the old article about this capability, at this link.
History on This (In case Interested)
When Outlook for Mac 2011 was released in 2010, it shipped with an AppleScript installed that converted e-mails to tasks. It was (and still is) the only way to convert e-mails to tasks on the Mac version of Outlook. The drag and drop functionality of Windows Outlook is not present on the Mac. Using the script does not pick up attachments, but otherwise seems to work.
In 2011, Microsoft stopped delivering that script with most Outlook for Mac installs. But if you copied the script from somewhere else and installed it in the right script folder, it would work.
Then in 2014 I think it was (I cannot remember), with an OS X update, all script capabilities on Outlook were blocked “for security reasons.” In the years after that some people were able to hack it in, but we didn’t support that.
So it’s good to see that the capability is back. Again, instructions for getting it installed are at my old article about this capability at this link.
Jan 21, 2017
Outlook.com is becoming a seriously good server, both for mail and tasks. Why do I say that? Because, since early 2016, Microsoft has been migrating all Outlook.com accounts to its Exchange Server platform giving it a good share of Exchange features at little or no cost. But it’s still much easier to set up and manage than Exchange. By now that migration is nearly complete, and so Outlook.com (assuming you use it plugged into your desktop Outlook or a mobile app) is now the server I recommend for consumers who want to use my MYN or 1MTD systems and go mobile with it. All the apps I recommend for MYN now connect to Outlook.com, just like to Exchange. And all the functionality I recommend in e-mail and tasks is now present when you plug Outlook.com into your copy of desktop Outlook. Continue reading
Jan 21, 2017
ClearContext Corporation, the makers of MYN Views and ClearContext Outlook Add-In, have recently changed the licensing of the ClearContext Outlook Add-In to a subscription model, matching the trend of many other software sellers. It is now $79.95 per year or $8.95 per month. Some points on this:
- This licensing plan only applies to the ClearContext add-in. The MYN Views add-in remains a one-time purchase of $15.00.
- Existing users of ClearContext Pro users can continue to use their paid versions, but all future ClearContext software updates will only be released in the new subscription model.
- If you want access to the MYN Special Edition of ClearContext, then, in the new subscription model, you’ll need to purchase the MYN Views software separately. After that, once you subscribe to ClearContext, it will recognize the existence of the MYN Views add-in and swap in the MYN Special Edition features.
For more information on the new ClearContext, go to http://www.clearcontext.com/new/.
Jan 17, 2017
Over a year ago I lamented on how many versions of Outlook were out there and how confusing it is figuring out which is which. Microsoft uses the Outlook name on way too many apps these days and it’s only gotten worse since that article. When helping users on the phone or by email, I’ve run into too many people who don’t know what version they are on.
In the old days, you simply told users to go to the About item under the Help or Outlook menu. But that doesn’t work anymore—Microsoft has chosen to hide the version name/number in various places, often many clicks away and very hard to find, if there at all.
But good news, Microsoft now has a good set of instructions for finding your version.
[3/22/2017 UPDATE: The link below no longer shows versions by screenshots of the top of the main window. Now it takes you through menus to find the version number.]
But Microsoft now has a graphic identification page to help you sort out the Outlook version just by examining the top of the main window. Go to the following link, and Microsoft presents a visual field guide to all it’s Windows, Mac, and browser based versions of Outlook:
Go to this link to see those instructions for determining your Outlook version:
If you are in a support role, and your users may have one of many various Outlook versions, these instructions could save you a lot of confusion. Just send the link to your remote user, and they can sort themselves out.
Michael Continue reading
Jan 5, 2017
Nine is an Android App that syncs with Exchange or Outlook.com and provides many MYN functions on your smartphone. Benefits:
- It allows viewing and entering MYN tasks
- It has an E-mail module with Category assignments
- It allows conversion of e-mails to tasks
- It has Calendar, Contacts, and Notes modules too, and everything syncs with the corresponding modules in Exchange or Outlook.com
Many MYN users have used it for years and love it. I used to recommend Touchdown for Android and MYN, and it’s still a good choice, especially for corporations that need secure connections. But the makers of Touchdown have had a beta version of its replacement version out for a while, and that beta lacks a lot of features we need for MYN. It is unclear when it will become the main version and the old version will be cut off. For that reason, I recommend Android users consider Nine instead.
There is a full video in my paid MYN-Outlook Complete Video Training (the newer 365 version of that class) on how to use Nine. It’s video number 22C. Below I show some notes on how to get started with Nine, in case you have not purchased the video course. Let’s look at those next. Continue reading
Dec 7, 2016
A number of technology blog writers periodically write a “What I Use” article to cover the hardware and software they personally use. I’ve never done that before, but since the holiday buying season is approaching, and since many of you may be in the market, I thought, why not? Perhaps this will help you with some decisions.
First of all, if you’ve been following my blog or newsletter for a year or more, let me just say that most of my current choices have not changed since this time last year, and I covered nearly all the devices in my blog articles during that period. So this is primarily for new readers, or for those of you who want a refresh or update from my past reviews. I do share a few new insights here that I did not have back then, for example new thoughts about Windows tablets. So read on. Continue reading
Nov 27, 2016
I’ve been using the currently configured MYN To-Do Bar in Windows Outlook with no changes for years now. Occasionally I get a bright idea to try to improve it, and give it a go for a while. Usually the bright idea has to do with adding columns, but after a while I end up resenting the extra horizontal space they add to the To-Do Bar, and so take them out—I go back to the basic settings. And I find most of my clients like the simplicity of the basic settings best too.
So it’s with caution that I suggest two columns you might want to add to the To-Do Bar. Since both of these are pretty narrow columns, their impact is small. It’s to add the Notes column and the Attachments column. I suggest both these so you can tell in the list view whether the task has any notes, and whether it has any attachments (not to be able to actually see their contents).
Again, you want to keep these very narrow. With the Notes column, after adding it I drag its size down to only show the first few characters of the Notes fields—that’s all I need to tell whether the task has any notes at all. The attachments column is narrow by default.
The simplest way to add a column is to right click on the phrase Task Subject, select Field Chooser, in the list that pops up find the field name (Notes for example), and then drag it to the position in the To-Do Bar header where you want it (between start date and the flag) and drop it there. Then resize it so its width is narrow. Repeat with Attachment.
Adding these is purely optional but you might want to give it a try. You can always take these out if you don’t like them (right-click the field name in header and choose Remove This Column).
Nov 19, 2016
[Note: this article is an update of my 2014 article about the earlier version of TaskTask for iOS. You can still find that article at this link. This topic is covered much more thoroughly as a video in my paid MYN Outlook Video Course; see Lesson 22b.]
As you may know, it is hard to find iPhone or iPad software that syncs tasks with your corporate Outlook Exchange Server. There is one app that works great. It’s called TaskTask (and TaskTask HD for the iPad), made by Ryan Gregg.
Once TaskTask is set for MYN configs (a simple menu choice), it works perfectly for MYN. That means it groups on Priority, then, within Priority groups it sorts on Start Date descending. It excludes future tasks and it hides completed tasks. And it colors today’s tasks differently from older tasks. In other words, everything works for my MYN system. Configuration for my simpler 1MTD system is just as easy. And one thing unique about TaskTask is it shows task attachments, something rare in the task app world.
So, if you use Outlook tasks and are on Exchange (you most likely are using Exchange if you are in a company of any size) download TaskTask now; it’s a great little app.