Last week, I encouraged Tamara to blogged about her productivity pursuit and how and why she chose to dump Outlook and switch to Lotus Notes following the GTD Summit. Yesterday, she made a blog post in which she shares her experience installing and using Lotus Notes on a Mac and PC. Here are a few excerpts:
I had no idea that Lotus Notes was still around.  I’m not stupid… I know David Allen uses Lotus Notes, but I had it in my head that it was stagnant software.  Like it hadn’t been updated in a zillion years. I also had it in my head that even if it was still out there and being updated, it was only on an enterprise level.  Not a single user level.  Definitely not available on a Mac in any way, shape or form.  Eric set me straight and I left our meeting excited to get up to my hotel room and download Lotus Notes for the Mac.  It was HARD to get to the download area - I had to create a log in! Dude, that’s too much work! - and then, the entire layout was just unfriendly. It was really a battle.  I was not happy at all.  Not quite frustrated, but unhappy.

When I got home from the Summit, I tried to install Lotus Notes on the Mac.  It installed, wouldn’t do email, and then crashed and burned. Now, when I try to start the software, it tells me that it can’t find the user ID and it can’t find the server.  I don’t know what's wrong.  Googling isn’t getting me the answers I need, and the IBM tech note assumes you’re in a business environment - not on a couch, in your jammies, with a MacBook on your lap.  I’m a little over using Notes on the Mac.  I just can’t get it to behave and I’m seriously tired of fighting with it. I never did get eProductivity installed on there, either.

I ended up getting a new computer [a PC] earlier than planned. As soon as I got it up and running, I downloaded fresh copies of both Lotus Notes and eProductivity.  They installed like a charm and I haven’t looked back.  Every day, I open Notes and view my lists in eProductivity with a huge smile on my face.  (Yes, I AM a dork.  Thanks for asking.)  I work for two people I call Crazy Makers and just knowing that I have a trusted system where I can find everything seriously makes my day.  I NEVER felt that comfortable with Outlook. It’s much easier to deal with their constant insanity now!! I really love how easy it is to create projects, subprojects, link documents and write notes in the system while I’m on the phone with them, trying desperately to keep up as they jump from topic to topic.

For me, the combo of Lotus Notes and eProductivity on a PC is like using a Mac: It. Just. Works...  ...At this point, I don’t care if I need to get a paper route to pay for it.  Lotus Notes and eProductivity will NOT be coming off the work PC once the trials are over.  I will fight to the death to keep the software.

Tamara still needs some help getting Lotus Notes to install on her Mac:
And, despite all my issues, I’m still not ready to give up on the Mac… but I don’t know what my next step is.  I need a Lotus Notes / Mac Guru and I’m willing to pay for help!  I want to experience that mind like water state at home, too.  If you are ready, willing and able, please email me:  tamara [dot] nelson [at] gmail [dot] com - or find me on Twitter (I’m uconntam).

Her post is much longer and I encourage you to read the full post:
I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

Thanks to this blog and my recent speeches and podcasts, I regularly receive requests from people that want to switch to Lotus Notes, either because they have heard David Allen or me talking about it in our semiars or because they have seen eProductivity and now want Lotus Notes. The challenge is I'm not really equipped to support these inquiries and many people tell me that the IBM sites are terribly complex for someone who simply wants to purchase, download, and install Notes for the first time.

Discussion/Comments (7):

Bill Greenberg - Good Computer Guy ( 4/14/2009 5:38:05 AM
I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

Are you getting people who just want to use Notes as a standalone app with no Domino server, which sounds like what Tamara is doing? Odd - I don't usually see people doing that, but I've always wished there were a "Notes Express" that was built for that.

Eric Mack ( 4/14/2009 8:58:00 AM
re: I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

Bill, I'm not trying to convince anyone of anythingm, but yes, since launching eProductivity we have had many people switch to Notes and run it as a single-use replacement for Outlook. Two of these people (so far) have indicated that they plan to add Domino servers.

Bill Greenberg - Good Computer Guy ( 4/14/2009 9:08:21 AM
I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

Very nice - that's the best way to "sell" it. If people can see beyond the usual "Notes sucks" it sells itself. Of course, when most people say they hate Notes it's because of the crappy applications they're using. You're coming from the other direction - showing them a terrific app, which just happens to run on Notes (and then opens them up to a world of possibilities.)

Eric Mack ( 4/14/2009 9:19:15 AM
re: I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

I never envisioned eProductivity as a tool to get folks to switch to notes. In fact, in the early days, I would flat out tell people, "Sorry, you can't use this if you don't use Notes." Then, folks started asking me, "what do I have to do to run Notes so that I can use eProductivity and get things done like David Allen?"

Fred Beiderbecke (): 4/15/2009 4:22:08 AM
I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

How can I run Notes at home on my PC as a replacement for Outlook? I'd be willing to give it a shot to see how it works. Any help or direction would be appreciated.

tamara ( 4/16/2009 4:33:32 PM
I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

@Fred - I found it MUCH easier to get Notes up and running on a PC as a single user. It installs easily and works well. If I used a PC at home, I'd be all set but I'm still having issues on the Mac side. *sigh*

tamara ( 4/16/2009 6:53:02 PM
I’m a Mac and a PC and I love Lotus Notes

I'm not sure what I tweaked - but Lotus Notes is now working on the Mac side. *happy dance* I just don't know how to give up and I'm glad I refused to let Lotus Notes beat me!

As I said in my blog entry, I'd been looking for that perfect GTD app and not finding it until I stumbled upon eProductivity. For me, eProductivity was definitely the driver to get Lotus Notes. If I could have gotten eProductivity for Outlook/Apple Mail, I would have stayed with Outlook/Apple Mail. (The back end is nowhere near as important as people want to make it. Plus, I'm wicked lazy. That's my 2 cents. YMMV.)

Discussion for this entry is now closed.