Merlin

I've never really got into full-blown project management; most of my needs seem to have been met by using plain ToDo lists, and now GTD. However, I'm soon going to be running more complicated projects, involving more people and multiple stages, so I'm wondering if my GTD approach is going to hold up, or whether I should also learn about project management, with dependencies, risk assessment and all that jazz.

Right on cue, I found Merlin. It seems to be quite full-featured and nicely designed, though as I've never used a project management application before, I don't know what it might be missing. There are one or two rough edges, such as a few German labels which crept into the English language version. They seem to have addressed these issues in a subsequent release and they don't seriously detract from the experience anyway. I like the fact that they use built-in Apple apps to do certain tasks: you can send events out to iCal, and the people involved in the project ('Resources' in dreadful management speak) are added directly from Address Book. It makes no sense the reinvent the wheel when you have these applications which work well, and it avoids having to re-enter data. You can also export to the web, which is useful to keep your project team reading from the same hymn sheet (or whatever the current management parlance is).

I don't know if I'll be using it, but it might be of interest to other people with complex projects to manage. I also like the name, and I'm half wondering if it's a tribute to the King of GTD Geeks.

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