You know, with my work, I've been looking to work on a program myself. I've been looking for weeks to pull together a --decent-- program for myself, my boss and my co-worker (small office, I know) to track our small graphics projects, phone messages, and so forth. I've tried a ton of them, and they all suck. The closest I've found was this:http://www.xemico.com/adc/
Now, this is --pretty-- good. However, a few major flaws: You --can't-- share one file for everyone and then one for yourself. The 'sharing' is read-only by everyone except the owner. Useless for us. And number two; it hangs the system regularly, it is NOT friendly with multiple desktops (even though it says it is). And three, when it decides it wants to do something on your system, that's it. It is taking over your system for up to 10 seconds at a crack.
Outlook? Sorry, we don't have the cash ATM to dish out $10k to get a SBS up and running, and all of the 'Outlook-interfaces' work worse than the independent programs.
Web-based are getting better and better, but it still has the 'in-your-face' nag aspect, and collaboration is either WAY overcomplicated, or too simplified to make it efficient for a day-to-day use.
If I had time, I would definitely build something. Here are my ideas for a dream small office calendar/task program. I may even try a go-around with it over my Christmas holiday.
1: Easy tracking -- something visible frequently or in-your-face. I like the idea of how ADC is --mostly-- but it is not implemented or runs well
2: True sharing -- In the display method, it should show your tasks first, then everyone else's in summary form or something of the sort. Calendars should mesh well too. I was thinking either a dynamic file system that can be hosted on a NAS, or option two; an SQL server (SQLite or MySQL)
3: Phone messages -- I think it should be managed along the lines of tasks, there should be a quick and easy way to distribute phone messages for others. Simple but overlooked in most smaller packages. EMails are a pain in the butt; A quick form that pops up on clicking the tray icon should be a simple form; To: (And direct to whomever it goes to), From and a short blurb box.
4: Dynamic to-dos. I hate using project managing programs; it's counter-intuitive for faster projects. However, to-do lists are less detailled than what I want. I'd like to see a to-do system where a to-do not only stores the changes you've made (IE:- I put in a new to-do: <company name> - Make quote. I change it to <company name> - Followup, it will still show the previous thing I did with them, and keep going.) Also, it needs to allow you to make step-by-step to-dos. IE:- One to-do can have multiple check boxes. Say, I need to design a graphic, email a proof, and follow up, I'd like to stick it under ONE to-do with multiple check boxes. They may mesh well with #3: If the phone message goes with a job, it would be planted right in the to-do.
I know I'm new to the community; this is a VERY lofty program concept; I'm kind of hoping instead of someone making the program (which I definitely do not expect,) that someone can aim me in the direction of something low-cost or free that meets what I have stated above (at least the first few points.)