I confess that I am not and have never been an Agendus user, so it’s all new to me. I’ve been very happy using the built-in PIMs since I started using a palm OS device over 10 years ago. Recently, I’ve become unenthusiastic with Blazer, Memos and Versamail and replaced the first two and deleted the third. So when the chance to review Agendus came along, I took it.
First a caveat. I started looking at this app and was taken aback by the plethora of features and options available. I almost decided against writing this review due to the immensity of the task. So I have not reviewed every feature of this app. I’ve picked some of the items I thought were significant and looked into them.
First I needed to install the app. In most cases installing a palm application is relatively easy, just extract from a zip archive and install the appropriate prc/pdb files. In some cases there is an exe installer that does the job for you. Iambic gave Agendus a better installer. Put the agendus prc file onto your palm. The first time you run it, it is the installer that runs. When the installer finishes it erases itself. It installs 4 launchable apps: Agendus Pro, Agendus Tour, Iambic Store, and TinyChart (not an application itself but it is used by tinysheet to create the charts in some views in Agendus).
I have to admit to being wowed when I first launched the Agendus Pro application. This application should have come as part of the Palm OS. The interface is easy to use, navigation is intuitive and the initial screen brings together everything you might want to see onto one screen. Some things I didn’t even expect to see in this PIM replacement app and was pleasantly surprised. Having the weather is handy, the quote of the day and “this day in History” are nice additions, and if you follow your own stocks, having a mini ticker there is nice (although they do take up screen space and any of the items can be deselected in the slots preferences screen). Each item is collapsible and you can configure how many items (e.g., meetings) you want displayed at a time – the default is 3. I also liked the advertised ability to plan trips and track projects, unfortunately, initially I couldn’t try either of these because each time I tried to create a new project or new trip, my device reset. Note that when I test software I restore a backup set that was created after a hard reset and some fiddling around with deleting and adding certain applications. This is a stable configuration and should not cause a reset. With a little help from Iambic, I was up and running again. It turned out that somehow the files used to store the trip and project information had become corrupted, I deleted these 2 files and they were recreated the next time I tried to create a trip and a project. (thank you to Michael from Iambic quality assurance for setting me straight).
The Agendus Tour which installs with the application is worth taking. For an Agendus newbie like myself, it was very helpful to be shown the meaning of all the various icons. As well as some features that would’ve taken me some time to discover otherwise. Here are some screenshots from the tour.
I found Page 8 to be very helpful since I didn’t know what any of the icons meant. Page 3 was informative. I find the fact that you can link to your web browser call a phone number or send an email all from this screen a great feature. Unfortunately I have a TX, so I couldn’t test the phone call link, but otherwise I really liked this ability.
The ability to get driving directions worked seamlessly and came in very handy. Once you use it you won’t want to get directions any other way. You do need to install the free Google Maps app for it to work.
As you probably already have guessed there are 14 pages of info in the tour. I found all of it helpful.
Agendus uses the databases on your device to populate it’s views. This has it’s ups and downs. When I started Agendus no sort view was selected for the contacts. Which was no big deal, but when I started the built in contacts app again the names were all jumbled up – unsorted. If I sorted them by name in the Agendus Contact view, they are correctly sorted in the built-in contacts view. On the other hand you don’t have to reenter or import any of your data.
On the down side the app is no lightweight – it takes up a couple of MBs of space. According to Memory Info when Agendus is running it takes up about 4mb of DBCache (out of a total of 13mb of usable DBCache on a TX is significant).
No matter how you slice it, Agendus has so many features, both new and from previous versions, that there is something for everyone. I personally found the free time finder extremely helpful. I needed to find four hours to meet with a colleague and so I started Agendus, tapped the title bar and chose the tools menu. I selected Free time Finder and this screen came up:
Then I tapped Advanced to get this screen (which allowed me to set some more restrictions on how I wanted the search to proceed):
I tapped okay and set the time to 4 hours and then tapped okay again. the result was the first screen below. When I tapped the down arrow on the 18th I got the second screen below:
Tapping the time designated above (8:00 am – 2:00 pm) brought me to a screen to schedule the meeting.
The busier your schedule, the more useful you will find this feature.
This is definitely a program you should try out. And this is also one of those programs you need to read the manual for or you are likely to get lost, even with the tour. Agendus 12.05 is feature rich, and after my first installation problems were solved, it has run like a charm. I tend to look at my files using a file manager quite a bit, so the fact that there was no application named Agendus was slightly confusing. The actual file name of the app is ActNames.prc. Before trying you might even want to go to Agendus’ home page to read about it or to the Agendus page on this website.