Posted by ben on April 15, 2000 at 20:27:23:
ACT! Is absolutely the best of the bunch - it is more customizable and and far more easy to configure with fax, email and other contact applications, such as Goldmine (Goldmine is a DISTANT second place here).
In the meantime - if you don’t have ACT or if it’s a little bit too expensive right now, here are some inexpensive (and FREE) alternatives:
Lotus Smartsuite, Millenium Edition is an office suite with word processor, database, presentation graphics, spreadsheet AND an excellent Personal Information Manager. This entire office suite is fully compatible with MS Office, and available for as little as $29.00 ($19 if you live near a Computer Renaissance shop).
Here is the best news - Microsoft’s Outlook email client is also an excellent Personal Information Manager (PIM) and contact management system. It is also completely compatible with ACT! So if you buy ACT! sometime later, you can download all your contacts into MS Outlook.
If you don’t have MS Outlook, there is one little program already in/on your computer which will do just fine, until you buy or can afford one of the programs mentioned so far … and that is Outlook Express. This nifty little email client - which comes pre-bundled with Internet Explorer, does have a rudimentary (but good) contact management / personal information manager built in. When you upgrade to Outlook, you can transfer all your contacts to it in one easy step.
One of the very best Web-based (and free) managers is WHEN.COM. Calender, contacts, phone numbers, appointments and much more. Log-on every morning and let it be your desktop throughout the workday. Or just log on to check for messages & appointments. Here is where you can find (and sign-up for) When.com: http://www.when.com
There is also another very good and completely web-based application, called ‘Personal Office’. You simply create a username for yourself, and log-in when you want to work. It includes Email, Calender, To-Do’s, Messages, Addresses, Bookmarks and memos. Here is the URL: http://www.personi.com/
Here is what I believe to be the best and completely FREE alternative and perhaps one of the best all-around organizers of them all. It is called SIDEKICK 95. In it’s earlier days, this used to be bundled with Corel’s Wordperfect Suite. It is now a standalone application and is offered FREE for the download by PC Plus, out of the UK. This organizer includes simple word processing, “Earth Time” which shows you instant time in all time zones, Expense View- where you can categorize receipts and print finished expense reports, “Reminder” - which gives you an instant view of To-dos, calls & appointments, Phone Dialer, Contact Manager - where you can log phone conversations, appointments & activities, Calender and more! Here is where you can DOWNLOAD SIDEKICK:
There are many excellent (and free) Contact Managers and Personal Information Managers available. I hope I haven’t beaten a dead horse to death, but if you would like even more information on this topic, feel free to email me.