While designing Agenda At Once we tried to make user interface as simple as possible and follow natural method of time planning. As it becomes mature and well rounded product, we kept basic principles while adding additional features in unobtrusive way. By default, Agenda At Once shows all important data in one screen (Combined View), and this principle eliminates unnecessary clicks and key presses.
Natural method of time planning may consist of following steps:
1. Add task to to-do list
It should be as simple as possible. Using pen and paper is probably still fastest way to do this, but than you wouldn't be able to use advanced features that computers allow. By using our software, tasks can be entered just by pressing Insert key and typing its description.
2. Approximate task duration and deadline date (optional)
This step will help you with later scheduling. However, not every task is intended to be scheduled, so this step might be skipped.
3. Schedule fixed appointments
You should reserve time for appointments that are hard or impossible to postpone (meetings, trips, vacations and other fixed appointments). If you enter these appointments first, you will have a nice overview of free time that you can fill anyway you find appropriate.
4. Assign to-do tasks to free time
Browse through to-do list and determine when each one of them can be done. Arrange tasks considering priorities and earlier defined schedule. In our application, this step is easily completed by simple drag and drop mechanism: drag task from to-do list and drop it to planner. You can also drag multiple tasks at same time and application will automatically determine exact times while taking in consideration durations.
5. Adjust plan afterwards
If something came up and you were unable to accomplish a task at planned time, you should be able to correct that. Agenda At Once allows you to reschedule tasks simply by moving them. You can also drag scheduled task back to to-do list, which means that you wish to postpone it but you are still not sure about new time. Scheduled task will become a to-do task and you can get back to it later when you are ready to consider it again.
Although we probably haven't told anything that you already didn't know, our wish was to present short overview of our thoughts and application concept. All steps are easily covered by Agenda At Once via to-do list management, schedule and their cooperation.