I don't know if anyone else struggles with this but I always feel like I'm jumping through hoops (multiple clicks/menu's) to use any software in the world (or on my mobile but thats a separate matter) to _quickly_ find someones phone number or contact details.
Is it possible to build a program that no matter what else I'm running I can push a single (definable?) hotkey to start or bring into focus an address book ?
Requirements are :
that it must be a single key (ok maybe a 2 key combo if nec)
that it is a 'shortlist as you type" search field on combined name, address, any phone number
that it can be called from anywhere (you could be knee deep in Excel, or Latex, or some Python coding, but you can still call up your AB at the drop of a hat)
The ramifications of linking to anyone elses AddressBook system I really don't want to go near. Far too convoluted to build an API to handle whoever has what. However, any approach that allows other systems to access the data in the AddressBook system suggested here would probably be of interest to many (even if it's a capability for manual import into any other AddressBook such as Outlook/Express, Windows (Live) Mail, T'bird, etc)
To be functional it must be QUICK and straightforward. Straightforward does not mean simple, it will likely be quite sophisticated, but the aim is to very quickly find someones appropriate phone number(s) to contact them, send a fax, or know the address to send an email to (capability to auto-call default email program if addy clicked or go to website if URL clicked ?). Possibility of dated notes regarding contact detail changes (phone number or address changes but you can still search on the older information to see correlations with other contacts ? ie. Maintain a history of previous contact details per person or business ?)
At the risk of seeming ignorant (with 30 years in the IT industry) there may be something around that does it the way I'm suggesting, but to my mind (so far) every AddressBook supplier seems to have focused on what information is required not how people actually need it to work to be efficient ? Here's a thought.. imagine Outlook with a single hotkey approach (from anywhere in your PC) to bringing up your Contact List !? Productivity may well soar ! (I know my stress levels would reduce but I prefer T'bird any day)
At present my preference is to use Evernote because of the free-format approach (to add notes to the contact data, and I do have a structure within each note that is applied) and Evernotes very powerful search & shortlist approach plus its ability to call programs from email addresses and URL's within the note.
Anyone else struggle with QUICK access to their addressbook ?