Binder

Binder is a browser-based project/task management system based around the concepts of David Allen’s book, “Getting Things Done.”

For most my life I’ve been fairly productive storing tasks and appointments in Outlook (for work) and my head (for personal work and life). Towards the end of 2005, with many projects on my plate, I came to realize that my head can’t keep my personal life straight anymore. The Getting Things Done methodology was the talk in personal productivity online, so I decided to give the book a read. It was a methodology that I could get behind and use.

Then a year went by.

In October 2006, my boss resigned, I assumed the interim-CIO position and my projects tripled. Like an anchor was tied to my leg, I started sinking. So I decided to finally implement a GTD system. I tried a few web-based systems such as BaseCamp, a hodge-podge of email based solutions, but none of them worked for me. Being a developer and apparently having no life, I started writing my own.

Overview

As you can see in the screenshots, this is a very minimalist approach; quite backwards for me. I typically need proper names, logos, overall look-n-feel before I start coding. I jumped right into this one.

Collect

Collect

This is where you clear your mind. Dump your thoughts and “stuff” here and worry about what it actually is later.

 

Process

Process

This is the crucial GTD step. Process your collected data, creating projects when necessary, inacting the 2-minute rule, delegating and defering stuff or incubate it, store it in reference or get it out of your life entirely.

 

 

Organize

Organize

I need to rethink this screen, but here you assign a context and take SWAGs at time and energy.

 

Work

Work

Oddly enough, this is the least referenced part of the GTD system—actually doing the work that’s required of you. Using context, time and energy level, find the work you should be working on and check things off your list.

 

 

Review

Review

The most important part of GTD, constantly reviewing your stuff, making sure projects have next actions and keeping the most important work fresh in your mind. I’ve created the ability to assign a review period so if you need to review something more frequently than once a week, you can.

 

Future Plans

I have no future plans for this application.  Since the introduction of the iPhone 3G and the App Store, I abandoned Binder in favor of OmniFocus.  The principles of OmniFocus are similar and now I have a syncing desktop and iPhone application that I don’t have to support myself.

The Geeky Stuff

The system was written using PHP, CodeIgniter Framework and MySQL. I used AJAX (my own classes) to avoid unnecessary screen refreshes.