Okay, I confess. I have had a serious case of blogger’s block. As Shakespeare (almost) wrote: ‘I have of late, but wherefore I know not, lost all my
mirth [interest in productivity apps]’. Maybe the Christmas pudding was too heavy. Maybe it was quitting my job and setting up a little business of my own. Maybe it was Leo Babauta’s zenhabits injecting a healthy dose of productivity agnosticism into my life.
So what spurred me on to put mouse to wordpress again? An email from Ryo, my software developer pen pal in Japan, who politely enquired how I was going with my review of Pagico 6, the latest upgrade of their productivity flagship for desktops, which was launched on 20 February 2013. Now I have never met Ryo, but the persona emerging from his emails is a kind one, with a commitment to excellence — not the sort of person I would want to disappoint. ‘Lift your game, Ozengo’, I thought, and share the news about Pagico 6 with the bloggerocracy.
I decided to start things off with a one–minute brainstorm about features that matter to me in selecting an app for managing complex projects. I came up with these: structure, ease of use, flexibility, reliability, informative, completeness, collaboration, portability, tracking, visually attractive. There was one more, but I cannot read my own handwriting… I am happy to give Pagico 6 a ‘tick’ against all of these features (except handwriting recognition). So let us have a look at a screenshot.
I have described Pagico’s approach to productivity (including GTD® compatibility and CRM features) in an earlier post and will confine myself here to a brief update.
The first screenshot below illustrates the modular nature of the project view in Pagico 6: you can drag and drop notes, tasks and subtasks to rearrange the components of your project. You can also colour-code, collapse or hide them. I like dragging the set of tasks I want to focus on next to the top of the project view, collapsing all other lists.
My second screenshot illustrates the power of Pagico’s inbox: you can create notes and task lists, drag in emails and a variety of file formats, or paste in hyperlinks to entries in Evernote.
The primary improvements in Pagico 6 are:
- the ‘smart collection’ feature expands the use of tags and essentially introduces the capacity to set up GTD® contexts in Pagico. If you type @call in a task description, the entry will be linked to other tasks and projects with the same context and will show up in the smart collection of all your calls, which can be accessed via a shortcut in the navigation pane if you wish. Entries can have multiple tags/contexts
- a new ‘link helper’ makes it easier to assign tasks to projects or contacts
- the search function works much faster
- easier to add contact information
- automatic task sorting options
- improvements to the UI (such as the capacity to add a profile picture to contacts)
- improved printing support
- the app is now retina ready.
What has gone is the ability to choose between two UI colour schemes and three purchase options. The former ‘professional’ version is now the only one available, which makes sense. It sells for $50 and users of Pagico 5 can upgrade to version 6 for $15. You can purchase a second licence for $5.
Pagico version 6 for desktops is a balanced upgrade that retains and strengthens the key features of version 5 while adding new functionality and refining the user interface. The low upgrade price makes it attractive to update the app — newcomers may want to check out the free two–week trial version. The latest upgrade to Pagico’s desktop version strengthens an already impressive suite that includes stylish and well–designed mobile versions for the iPhone and the iPad. Pagico 6 shares a number of key features, such as flexibility, email and Evernote integration with industry leaders such as Omnifocus. It adds to that calendar integration, strong collaboration and contact management functionality, the capacity to cross–link information and to attach a broad range of file formats.
Pagico runs on Mac, Windows and Ubuntu. I have reviewed version 6 (build 1393) using an iMac and a MacBook Pro running Mountain Lion (vs. 10.8.2). The developers have provided me with free licences for the desktop, laptop and iPhone for purposes of this review.
I would be interested to hear from anyone who has used Pagico for task or project management!