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Watership PlannerDiscount

Watership Planner

Mastermind Your Life!

for PC  Download Trial
Platforms: Windows XP, 2003 Server, Vista, 2008 Server, 7, 8, and 8.1
Watership Planner ScreenshotPIM Software ScreenshotWatership Planner, PIM Software ScreenshotWatership Planner, Productivity Software Screenshot

Folks, this is a very rare BDJ deal! Even after the success of the last Watership Planner promotion, it took over 5 years of regular emails to Mark before he agreed to re-promote it. In other words, don't miss out on this one -> who knows when, or if, we'll run it again!

Watership Planner is different.

We should know, after all, considering how many organizational and time-management applications we sift through every month in our constant search for the cream of the crop.

Most planner utilities are basically just glorified task-lists or calendars -- really just digital substitutes for those re-fillable 3 ring binders of decades past. They'll save you the cost of ink and paper refills, but not so much in terms of time and sanity.

Like we said, Watership Planner is different.

For starters, Watership Planner reorganizes itself -- in real time -- based on the continual interruptions, changing priorities, and estimation slips that we all encounter every single day. Other planners force you to tediously move and re-position tasks whenever your schedule changes.

Watership Planner allows you to designate lists of tasks that need to be accomplished and automatically keeps up with their progress. It lets you estimate, at a glance, when any given task will be finished, and provides an accurate scoreboard that updates itself with every second of your progress.

Rather than relying on simple to-do lists and calendars, Watership Planner allows you to build detailed plans for all of your major projects. You'll know what you have to do each day to move your goal forward. Stop trying to keep track of inflexible paper based charts, and even better, stop trying to juggle all those myriad tasks in your tired, overworked head.

Watership Planner helps you understand exactly where your time is going and within weeks you will optimize your days and cut out unimportant, trivial tasks. Work less and at the same time have that work make a bigger impact? Now that's different!

Please note folks: you can click here to take a tour of the product.

Review Written by Roger Thomasson
The Conversation
The Fine Print
Expand All Email Updates Load 8 Older Comments
John H You have a good concept of reality here. Your web site is worth a read through even if one does not purchase.

I did not see any specific mention of time reports so I can know what to bill specific projects.

Some of my projects take months and individual project tasks can span several days. This appears to be an upgrade waiting on your development list. I do need detailed time tracking here.

I gave up on all the other To Do lists because all the detailed project tasks got buried and lost on the "Tree" branches.

I then went to a list on a simple Rich Text File which combined with Open Source Gant Project allows me to keep track of large complex multi step projects.

I dropped the Rich Text File for a mechanical pencil and Clipboard with storage compartment. Gant Project is still used and I have a scanner to archive old paper to do lists.

I run a machine and welding shop and only spend about a third of my day at the computer. Even with several Thinkpad Tablets, the clipboard is still more convenient.

My system does not give me time tracking for separate projects. I did not notice any specific mention of time reports with Watership Planner. I will eventually need to know how to bill time to specific projects.

Will give this a try.

Thanks in advance for any comments.
Jan 25 2014 at 12:57pm Copy Link
Petr Hello,
I checked your web site. Your product looks great! A few key pre-sale questions:
a. Can I sync (2 way) with my GMail Calendar?
b. Can I sync (2 way) with my Outlook 2013 on Windows?
c. What do you recommend as a complementary "mobile" way to view my schedule?
d. I have a desktop, laptop and iPad. I know you have a Windows program, so can I install on both of my Windows devices? What about my iPad access to my schedule?

Thank you.

Jan 25 2014 at 2:10pm Copy Link
Michael R. Fineprint says 'Upgrades to future versions of the software will be free for 12 months'.

Does than mean that all updates within the last major version number are free also beyond this 1 year?

I ask,because some vendors use this BDJ-upgrade-phrase, but make no difference between updates and upgrades, so even updates (like bugfixed-versions) would require a new buy.

[@BDJ: I would be happy for a phrase concerning this issue in the fine-print that would make this question no more necessary]

Which version of Outlook is required to let it be used together with WP?
Does WP also support other EMail-programs like Thunderbird?
Jan 25 2014 at 4:35pm Copy Link
DH007 I would have just one suggestion, could the price be further reduced to$44.95? It would be simply better to announce like Incredible, Get the full for the price of upgrade. Limited time offer.
Jan 26 2014 at 2:32am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @John H:

Re: "Your web site is worth a read through even if one does not purchase."

I think that is one of the nicest compliments I've been given, marketing that is worth checking out on it's own :)

I have a newsletter at the bottom of: http://www.watership-plan...story.html that you can sign up to if you are interested in reading more of my articles.

As for time tracking for separate projects and the development list:

It looks like three things are being discussed here: time tracking, time reports, and the development list (the FAQ and the roadmap).

If by time tracking you mean recording what actually happened with time, where it was spent, then Watership Planner has that pretty much locked up for a while now. The "time" column lets you associate a time period (e.g.: "8:30 to 9:15" as a period of time tracked associated with a task--if you are entered them manually from your clipboard because you weren't at the machine using the clapperboard to direct what you were working on.

As for time reports, nothing in the documentation mentions it specifically. The projects tab lets you print, and you can select columns for current estimates and tracked time already spent--and print that out. The estimates under projects let you "sketch" out time by setting the estimates at the folder level. Then if it happens that the total of the tasks inside the folder add up to more then the folder's estimate, it will take the sum of all the child folders / tasks.

What is under development is the sessions feature. The limitation right now is that Watership Planner lets you program constraints you need to follow in the day and it will plan out the best projection for that day. But it won't automatically push things past the current day, unless you specifically move it.

Sessions are designed to separate the "how" you want to work on tasks with the actual tasks themselves--the "what" you want to do. So you can have one of your projects that takes months to do, but create a routine for yourself that when you get into the office you will work on this project for 2h, in 30m sessions with a 5m break between them. Then you set it to "pull" the work from the desired project, and to "pull" the breaks from an existing recurrence or a special project for breaks.

Then time mapping would know how to schedule your day. With this in place, then it could calculate more realistically when projects will be done based on how much you are going to work on them daily, and if any other constraints would be pushing that work back.
Watership Software - Jan 26 2014 at 4:33am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Petr:

Watership Planner doesn't sync with Gmail, but it does sync appointments (normal and recurring) with Outlook both ways.

No one does time mapping on phones so I can't recommend anything, but you can copy your todos and paste them into one of the great free todo apps that are available both on the phone and desktop. You can paste into desktop version and then it syncs with your phone.

Time mapping is most valuable when you are heads down doing knowledge work, staying locked into that fragile state of concentration. When all you have is a phone, you are usually running errands or running between meetings, and it tends to be more of not forgetting anything instead of directing attention. Still, a mobile version is planned but in the meanwhile I recommend using time mapping for knowledge work.

As for multiple Windows machines--you can install onto a thumbdrive or have the database shared via dropbox. It won't work on iOS however.
Watership Software - Jan 26 2014 at 4:42am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Michael R:

I can see how it is confusing that everyone has their own way of handling upgrades. Upgrades for 12 months means that any versions that come out within 12 months are free. If 9.0 comes out in a month, you get that free.

If at 12 months and 1 day a tiny bug fix comes out that alleviates an issue you were having, Watership Planner won't let you install it without an upgrade key. Why did you wait so long to let me know about it!? I'm pretty good about fixing bugs :)

But you are free to use any version that you like within your 12 month window indefinitely without the use of an upgrade license.

Watership Planner works on XP and up, and syncing works with Outlook 2002 and up. Right now it only supports Outlook for importing and exporting.
Watership Software - Jan 26 2014 at 4:48am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @DH007:

Deja vu, I was just having a conversation like this. Only it was from $69.95 to $49.95. See I was with some friends at this taco place that had this special: 50 tacos for $50. And they were like: "Mark, you have to make the Watership special cheaper than the taco special, so you can say: 'it’s even cheaper than Pancho Villa's 50 for 50 special'." And I was convinced so I set it at $49.95.

Now I worry that you are much more creative than me and can keep convincing me, so I'm just not going to get on this slippery slope. But I like the effort :)
Watership Software - Jan 26 2014 at 4:55am Copy Link
Avi Nahir I acknowledge the problem, and am looking for a solution. However, could not find and info on the web concerning your product except for this:


Compare to this review:

So, is there any external review that I can use to decide about your application?
Jan 26 2014 at 5:40am Copy Link
H. H. @developer
I just tested the trial version and have to say that the software has interesting features and a nice userinterface.
Nevertheless there is one feature I really miss - and this will be the dealbreaker if not already implemented or available in the near future- :

The ability to create more hierachical trees - meaning more subprojects/submilestones or sub-tasks / subtodos.
(Or did´n´t I just figure it out?)
Software like Abstractspoon TodoList allows the user to create many subtasks - the Tasks can be either shown as a list or a tree-view - .
For a greater number and more complex projects and todos the Watership Planner lists become endless long and one can loose the overview.
Just an example - e.g. organizing PC PC may be the Project,which shall be divided in Hardware and Software. The Software shall be catagorized in various Groups - e.g.utilities,, graphic, Office,... These Groups shall be devided in e.g. utilities - diskmanagement, filemanagement, Explorer addons,... and these Groups shall have further subgroups.... resulting in e.g
PC- Software-Freeware-utilities-filemanagement-Windows - duplicatesearcher,...
Of course for Project planning there are occasions where the restriction of watership planner may be useful, but in other occasions it will be too limited. Especially regarding, that breaking down complex tasks in small Tasks/Little steps is also an aspect of getting things done.

Please clarify if the Feature of more subtrees (like implemented in todolist or Task unifier pro or effexis achieve planner will be available in watership planner too. For Projects it would mean e.g. not only 1 and 1.1 when adding Milestones, but also 1.1.1, - and of course a more deep hierachical tree structure for todos/taks too.

thank you for considering in advance
Jan 26 2014 at 6:09am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Avi:

When you say: "I acknowledge the problem," what problem was this? I got lost.

As for the outliner review: wow, that's a tough crowd :)

As for any external reviews: This is a good question, I don't know of any, but if someone knows something that I don't, please let me know.

As for why there isn't any external reviews: This is my fault, I haven't done any promoting these last 5 years and I would turn down requests for help with reviews. At the time I wanted to go under the radar and focus on figuring out concentration and knowledge work myself and expressing my discoveries in the program.

This is great for generating ideas, but for a while it was probably impossible to write a review. There wasn't much documentation a year ago and if you wanted to write a review you'd either compare Watership Planner's feature set to a traditional feature set where it would earn a 2 out of 10--which probably isn't worth publishing anyways. Or you'd realize it was different but then find no help and an author who says he wasn't interested in having a review because he was busy improving it. You'd see you have a stack of todo list software that needs reviewing and move on.

Take a look at exhibit A:

A list of 76 Windows programs that support GTD that Watership Planner happens to be on. I don't know how it got on that list. And under features listed for Watership Planner I don't know what "linked appts" is but I don't think Watership Planner has that :) Can you blame them, how would the software fit in there? I try to call out the 3 big features that are unique to Watership Planner in the main page: time mapping, ROI prioritization, and the clapperboard, but none of those made it under the feature list for Watership Planner under Pricata's list.

But I have good news, as repentance for the sins of my business sense, I will compensate you an external review.

"But Mark, you have a bias. You can't give an external review."

You are right. And I can't tell you how well I've executed. But I can give you the idea because it is simple: all I'm trying to do is approach the problem of knowledge work from a different angle.

OK, it is different. But is it the best for everything? No. Is it the best at most things? No. As I see it, if you are simply looking for a better way at organizing what you need to do, something more traditional will probably work better. Watership Planner doesn't even have a search feature--but it is coming soon :)

If instead you need to make better decisions about where you place your attention, then Watership Planner offers a new bag of tricks that you might find valuable, that might lead to breakthroughs.

Every purchase--even via BitsDuJour--comes with a 60-day return policy. Send me an E-mail and just let me know that it didn't click for you and I'll refund you right away. I buy things online too, and know it is frustrating when they fine print you out of a refund.
Watership Software - Jan 26 2014 at 11:14am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @H. H.:

I think you are looking for the indent and outdent commands in the Projects Tab. Right now you can't make folders in the Day Tab, it was designed for just filling your plate for a day so it uses the simplified ABC prioritization method with a flat list. However this limitation will be lifted with the new multi-day tasks feature under development in branch #1, see the roadmap:


But the good news is you can go very deep in the Projects Tab. Projects themselves have an arbitrary limit of Projects and Milestones, but tasks can go down many levels until you hit a hard limit I put in somewhere. But it is more than 100 levels deep.

You can do this by using tab and deleting as if you were changing the beginning indentation levels of a text file. Or you can drag and drop a task onto of the one you want it to go under.

I have a little bit of more documentation here:

Watership Software - Jan 26 2014 at 11:22am Copy Link
Stefan Hauber I just saw your upgrade-price for another 12 months, which is currently about $45.
Is it possible after today's buy to upgrade the program anytime, i.e. in some years (if a must-have feature will be implemented), and be entitled to still get the upgrade-price?
Jan 27 2014 at 12:43am Copy Link
Karl M. How good can WP help to overcome extremely heavy procrastination?
Jan 27 2014 at 2:07am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Stefan:

It is perfectly acceptable to skip upgrade licenses if you aren't compelled to upgrade for the new features, you will still be entitled to a discounted price in the future. Being a previous user counts a lot.

Even as of today, anyone who bought a new license from the previous BitsDuJour special 5 years ago and decided that they weren't interested in any of the upgrades through the years but then suddenly decides that they want to upgrade because of the new recurrence features in 2.8 is entitled to the upgrade price and a fresh 12 months on that license.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 2:09am Copy Link
Pavi Johnson Hi, well I am from and gave Watership Planner a much better review:

Ironically, I didn't buy a license at that time as my system was still in flux. I will buy it this time around!

@Karl M: the fact that you can have the program schedule tasks based on priority in your free blocks of time helps with procrastination immensely, IMO.

Jan 27 2014 at 3:32am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Karl: If you are interested in learning more about how you procrastinate and how you can overcome it, I think this is where Watership Planner is strong. While writing the documentation I distilled Watership Planner to a couple of sentences: Watership Planner is designed to keep your attention focused on what you are really after. This deep thinking will move you through the timeless stages of innovation--predictably leading to breakthroughs. What I mean is that the focus is on getting your thoughts on where you want them. Coincidentally to do that it helps to organize the things that you need to do and what you want to think about. But it is more than that, it attempts to help keep your thinking concentrated on where you want it. What that means for procrastination is that Watership Planner is trying to address things at the thought level, the attention level, not just a database to organize a good list of what you want to procrastinate on :) Procrastination has different causes, I'll give a common one that Watership Planner is particularly good at solving: the disconnection between what we want to do, and what we can actually do. Time mapping helps with this because you see your todo list expressed in a better representation of your time. Notation and visualization are big influences towards how we think. The Greeks had trouble seeing certain branches of mathematics because they used Roman numerals (I, II, III, IV, etc.) as their notation, making calculations more cumbersome than the Arabic notation (1, 2, 3, 4, etc.) that we use now. Once you get used to time mapping you'll automatically begin thinking in it. Seeing a todo list as a blueprint for how you want to spend your time instead of what you want to accomplish helps because you weren't procrastinating really, you were just trying to do too much at once and didn't realize that this was the case. Looking at a todo list on its own, it is hard to visualize what that really looks like time wise. The unconscious question becomes "how am I going to get all of this done?" That causes procrastination because it usually isn't easy to solve, especially if any of the tasks are hard to solve on their own. Instead if you just focus on spending your effort on what you have planned, you are thinking in terms of time, not things to do. Now when you spend an extra minute on something, you'll see that reflected in the agenda, it will push everything back a minute and you'll see more important things that it is affecting. The costs aren't hidden anymore making you more aware of if you are making the best use of your time. The unconscious question becomes "how can I make the most progress on the current task before I move on to the next task?" This is much more enabling because it takes the pressure off and gets you to start making progress. As an analogy, imagine a teenager trying to get a girlfriend. If he made a todo list with "get girlfriend"--well, he doesn't know exactly how to do that and there are no guarantees that anything would work. You can do the exact same thing with two different people and get different results. So a common response to this is with procrastination, a "I need to think of this, let me do something else in the meanwhile instead." What if instead he decided to make a goal to "get a girlfriend." Then he dedicates an hour a day towards what he thinks will help him achieve that. Now instead of looking at the results, he is looking at putting in the effort, and then making adjustments from what he is learning from doing. There is ROI prioritization so that he can sort out his best ideas based of what he should spend his time on by having them prioritized based on how much he wants them and how long they will take. What this does is gets him motivated because now he has generated a list of good ideas and then ranked them to find the best one out of them. This is motivating because he knows why he is doing it. There is much more and I can go on forever. Actually, I already did :) here is the documentation: http://www.watership-plan...ation.html If you'd like to sign up for my newsletter where I talk about things like procrastination, there is a form at the bottom of this page: http://www.watership-plan...story.html Do it before you forget :) My next article--which is already written--is about how to prevent procrastination when doing research online--which is like one of the Aliens movies, where they had to go inside this base for something, but it was full of aliens. So even though they have to do it and they are armed with all these weapons of the imagination of James Cameron--you know that most of them aren't making it back. That's how I think of doing research online--there are people much smarter than me that work full time on getting me to give them my attention online, it's an interesting problem. The article mentions a feature that Watership Planner has coming out soon, but the article has useful information in it even if you don't use Watership Planner.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 4:08am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Pavi:

Thank you for the kind review. I just wanted to follow up after a year or so since you wrote in your review:

"The only negative is a lack of good documentation, which hopefully will improve as well"

that since then, I have rewritten the documentation with diagrams of the different components, laid out the fundamental ideas that the program is based on, created a tour, and I'm planning on doing more.

The first phase of development was about finding the right ideas that work for the program. Now it is about simplifying them and presenting them in a way that makes them easy to learn.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 4:16am Copy Link
Avi Nahir @Mark

Thank you for your answer.

The problem I was referring to was "make better decisions about where you place your attention".

I'm am out-of-shape self-employed developer. I want to build a web site and need to study many technologies: ASP.Net MVC, newer aspects of C#, entity framework, Java - to name a few. I need to study from books (e.g. Safari Books Online library) and videos (Pluralsight). For my product I should plan the site layout and content, design a sketch using Balsamiq, gather feedback from consultants and so on.

My point is that if I schedule learning, an at the rate technology is advancing, I would just find myself with a calendar full of learning (and time allocated to studying productivity enhancing tools ;) such as Watership Planner)

How would I handle this with Watership Planner?
Jan 27 2014 at 5:16am Copy Link
Karl M. @Mark Petrik

Thank you for your very interesting answer. I just purchased.
Jan 27 2014 at 5:48am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Avi:

I like your ambition, I agree that if you scheduled this all out your life would like that of graduate students.

Luckily the solution is a straight forward with ROI prioritization.

ROI--return on investment--prioritization works on economic models of predicting how much value you get for an investment. In Watership Planner's case, the investment is of your time.

Most of us have a hard time evaluating opportunities with our time because no matter what we do, we are probably better off from it. If you go in with good intentions, you will probably improve something. And even if you mess things up somehow, you will have learned and grown from that, leaving you on the whole probably better off.

Once I convinced myself that I would program better if I organized my early Black Sabbath collection. This is crazy. And if we do some psychological experiment we would probably find some slight improvement in my programming because of some deep reason that only someone like Carl Jung could articulate.

But here's where it gets interesting, if you give that story to an economist, they aren't impressed. Because they think in terms of the return you are getting for what you put in. If I sell something and make a 20% profit, everyone thinks that is pretty good--except an economist because an economist isn't about making GOOD decisions, they are about making OPTIMAL decisions. They are asking themselves what decisions COULD you have made in that situation with the resources you and which one did you pick with the information that you had.

Back to your website. Instead of trying to do it all at once, you decide what would be the best use of your time given what you want to give it. Then you work by doing the most impactful task.

I'd approach it like this:

1. Make a list of all the things that you would want to learn, just to get it out of your mind.

2. Begin to group them into separate projects. Figure out what is important for you about each project. For example, I have a project for writing documentation, and a project for the sessions feature. Both of them help Watership, but from different angles. The objectives of each project are different. E.g.: correctness is more important for the sessions feature than it would be for documentation in an area that doesn't have any documentation.

3. Here's the fun part, take two tasks and compare them against each other. Which one would you rather have? And by how much more? That is the impact, that is how much value that tasks provides to your project.

4. Congratulations, you are now motivated. How? Because you just compared all your ideas against each other and now know concretely what is most important. All motivation is, is a list of reasons why you want to do something. Remember the problem is that we can always find reasons for doing anything. But now when you think of a lower value task, it won't appeal to you because you know what you'd RATHER be doing. Economist thinking baby.

I'm not a gym person myself, and I was not athletic at all growing up but now I love going to the gym because I have worked out the reasons behind why I go and connect to that. Because heavy lifting will push more blood in the brain, making more efficient webs of blood capillaries, that will transport oxygen better, that will give my thinking an edge, which will make me a better programmer. I even bring Stepanov's book: Elements of Programming with me to get programming insights between sets. This sounds obvious whenever I read about these stories with other people, but in my own personal case, wondering what it is about something that makes it important to me leads to insights that can drastically change behavior. It isn't willpower, it is just seeing clearly the connections in the same way a lazy teenager won't do their homework or the trash, but will wake up an hour early to do their hair just right because today is Monday, and that means Spanish club, and that means Maria will be there.

How is this different than prioritizing by giving them a 1-9 priority value or dragging and dropping them into order? Because you are only setting one variable--the impact. You aren't trying to determine what you should do based on urgency, how long you will think it take, dependencies, and impact. When you tie all that together, whenever there is a change to any of that, the result is different and it throws it out of where it should be.

You only determine how much impact it would have towards the project. Then when you fill in the estimate, it will tell you how much value you are estimated to get per minute of effort and ROI prioritization kicks it to sort it into place. If you need to set dependencies you drag and drop it based on the order it needs to take outside of its ROI. When the sessions feature is released time mapping will move things around to try to meet any deadline set, or let you know if it can't make it fit.

5. Use the daily report to make metrics for yourself so that you have a baseline to compare with. This is your resting productivity level. Once you know this, one you have what is important to you distilled to a number, you can see what works towards affecting that number. You might notice a strange coincidence that seems to always correlate with a lower number and devise a plan to avoid the situation to make it easy for yourself.

I track how much time I spend programming and I have metrics that I watch closely, like how much time I spend studying. I can tell you pretty accurately at all times how well I'm doing, because since I'm always looking at these numbers, they get associated with the actions that cause them to move. So you get an intuitive feeling of where they should be.

This is what focuses your attention because it has become PAINFUL for me to spend time doing something that I know isn't as important because I know at the end of the day I won't have as much time for something that I'd rather be doing. I don't see it as I can do both anymore because I know how that plays out like some early checkmate.

This is exactly the approach that I used to write the documentation. I was completely overwhelmed by the task, I didn't know where to start and didn't think I was capable of writing. I started with 30m of effort a day and would throw out ideas and think of how to categorize them. I got some books on how to write documentation and tried things out and readjusted as I went.

In math there are all these simple elegant proofs that took mathematicians years of planning, deadends, and rework to come up with. But they put in the effort and then later they covered up all their tracks and presented their work. The documentation feels like that.

Now writing is the probably the most rewarding part of my day, it is still difficult for me, but I look forward to it. I get E-mails from people of how they were able to make some new breakthroughs in their productivity just by looking at things differently via ROI prioritization.

The weird thing is that you want to do these things, no one goes to the gym and then looks back and thinks "that was a waste of time, I wish I hadn't have done that, I want my time back." We feel good when we do something difficult that we want to do but can't get ourselves to do because we get distracted by things that we think we'd rather be doing. Just remembering what you really want goes a long way and it sounds too simple to work, but it does.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 8:30am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Karl:

Karl, thank you for the question, and thank you for the purchase. I hope you enjoy the articles as well.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 8:31am Copy Link
John H "--there are people much smarter than me that work full time on getting me to give them my attention online...."


You got some of my time!

I work with machines and equipment and never get interrupted like people in an office. I need to stay with my paper system.

I will subscribe to your newsletter.
Onward and back to work here!
Jan 27 2014 at 9:46am Copy Link
Avi Nahir @Mark

Thank you for a great answer. Because you made the effort, and because I really connected to your Black Sabbath example, I'll purchase your product, and I'll try to put it to good use.
Jan 27 2014 at 10:35am Copy Link
Mark Petrik @John:

I got some of your time and I'm a lightweight. If I were an alien in my analogy I'd be one of the baby ones, and not even the ones with legs but the ones that are like snakes with tiny arms.

It can be pretty difficult for people with jobs where they need to look up answers online when they get stuck on something, going from page to page trying to connect the pieces, stretching their attention looking for the right connections to get the right information for their particular problem with unique intricacies--and yet not lured into expertly crafted trap underwater graveyards.

As for working with paper, hey! sometimes that's the most elegant solution. Have you read: The Checklist Manifesto? It is amazing how far you can take a checklist for improving you process, especially when the situations can be distilled to routine performances.

As for the newsletter, I put it on the story page because if you connect with my story, then I figure you might be interested in the ideas that helped me. I guess it is marketing, but I think of it more as a service because I know what it feels like to have this hidden ambition, a hidden hunger that you are skeptical about. Because it seems like it is right in front of you and yet so far away.

I can't explain it psychologically but I feel a desire to express the feeling of what it is like when you feel you are in control over being able to put your attention towards the things important to you. If I were a painter I'd try to capture it in a composition--but I think it is more interesting and more useful to try to express the models behind that type of thinking through a better medium for their transmission. I think right now that is done best via the program and via the articles. I feel honored just to play a part.

As for the name "Watership" the story is long, boring, personal, embarrassing, and coincidentally... mysterious :)
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 12:26pm Copy Link
Mark Petrik @Avi:

Avi, thank you for your questions, and for your purchase. I will check in with you in 2 weeks to see how you are doing with your website project.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 12:30pm Copy Link
_*_ Hello, does the 12 month timeframe begin upon purchase or activation?

Also, I am not trying to use this software to keep track of a rocket launch schedule, but simply keep tabs on a typical life where I am trying to get more accomplished; will this be too much software for such a task?

I just downloaded and trying to get a handle on how to use it properly.

Thank you
Jan 27 2014 at 4:15pm Copy Link
H. H. @Mark Petrik
thank you for responding and also detailed answering of various questions from other bdjusers. I now managed to create the hierachical tree under the project-todos. Thats fine, but I still think, that the ability to have more folders/milestones at the leftpanel ( would be helpful - the design with different - gradient colours results in a better overview - the folders at todo-level sedem to be simply yellow on white background, only the todos beneath are coloured.
In your answer you wrote " this limitation will be lifted with the new multi-day tasks feature under development in branch" - does this mean, that the milestones will allow more hierachial trees ( or what else is meant by !lifted" (sorry I´m no native english speaker)
Thank you for clarifying ths too in advance
Jan 27 2014 at 4:38pm Copy Link
Mark Petrik @_*_:

The 12 month timeframe of free upgrades begins upon the purchase date.

As for using this for a typical life, it depends what you want your life to be like. If you are working with ideas, where you are interested improving your state of mind to improve the quality of your ideas, then it might be interesting.

I have clients who don't use much more than the Day Tab as a traditional todo list with estimates filled in so they get time mapping. That is useful enough for them that they feel they are getting their value's worth without touching ROI prioritization or the clapperboard.

I go step by step from creating todos, to getting time mapping to kick in, all the way up to the clapperboard in the tour:


(By the way the clapperboard is just basically a menu that you can bring up from any program with common shortcuts.)

Sometimes later they get into the other features, sometimes they don't. The complexity is out of the way if you aren't using it. These extra features usually only turn on once you've associated the right information. Things are enabled in a layered approach as you fill in more. For example if you don't want to use ROI prioritization, you just don't do anything. It only kicks in when you fill in an estimate and an impact. These are blank by default. It won't ask you to fill out a rocket launch project plan form if you want to remember to call someone back :)

If you want flexibility in certain areas but don't want to be overwhelmed, check out the tour and see how you feel.

If you want a simple traditional setup then others have already done that, and they are much cheaper.
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 5:17pm Copy Link
Mark Petrik @H.H.:

I apologize for my ambiguity. By lifted I meant that you will be able to create folders inside the Day Tab like you can in the Projects Tab.

I definitely agree with you that the left pane of the Projects Tab could use some work--including choosing what "project pulse" information you want to see, like how much work is left, when it is estimated to be finished, etc. I have thought of this and planned out the work.

I came to realization that what was limiting this is that there is this arbitrary distinction between projects, milestones, and then the tasks and task folders. Instead they should all be under one tree, so that their position dictates what they are. And the user controls how they want them to be displayed. Maybe they only want to have a couple of projects that they are tracking in the left pane, with other projects tucked away out of view. Maybe they want to see the first 4 levels of all their projects in the left view. Maybe they want to switch depending on what they are doing. All this is planned for sure, but I can't promise any dates :)
Watership Software - Jan 27 2014 at 5:27pm Copy Link
Keter Magick I have to agree with John H; the site is definitely worth a read. I wish I had the luxury of a little more time to learn the application before buying, but took the gamble based on what I read and about an hour's worth of experimentation with a trial copy. I am thankful for this offer because I could not have cracked the full price nut, but probably can deal with periodic renewals. So yes, Mark Petrik, it was great that Bits convinced you to do another offering. :o)

One thing I wish I had seen on the Watership web site was a Community Forum. One thing I've learned from managing both software developers and social media projects is that the community comes up with ways to use the product - some utterly brilliant - that the developers would never think of. A well-structured and curated forum is a great source of innovation and can allow expert users to do the first level of heavy lifting on tech support.
Jan 27 2014 at 7:33pm Copy Link
MojoMan I'm vacillating about buying WP... and having a really difficult time deciding whether this would be worth the investment of time to learn, and more importantly, to implement and use.

Deadlines determine my schedule and priorities for the most part. Putting out fires and the proverbial squeaky wheel disrupt plans and reprioritize my schedule constantly.

I can almost see the benefit of such a system, but implementation seems like a pretty substantial obstacle... that and making the system a priority until it becomes routine.

Sorry to ramble... just wanted to express the other side of the equation and the trade-off that I can't resolve... especially having just seen WP for the first time.
Jan 27 2014 at 9:17pm Copy Link
HungryForDeals Please extend this another day! I don't have time today to see if it would work for me. Do you have a video demonstration of its features?
Jan 27 2014 at 9:43pm Copy Link
Keter Magick @MojoMan - I am finding that using a WBS (Work Breakdown Structure) approach from project management helps to organize things. If you are familiar with this approach, the interface so far seems fairly easy to learn. I tested with a project I have already half completed, and it makes it easier to see how the pieces work together when you already know what the outcome should look like!
Jan 27 2014 at 9:56pm Copy Link
D Rogers Will you still honor your 60 day guarantee if we purchase from bits DuJour today as opposed to those who pay full price at your website?
Jan 27 2014 at 10:22pm Copy Link
MojoMan @Keter Magick - Thanks for your perspective. I guess I'm missing something with regard to better planning for my situation. My tasks are not necessarily so complicated as to need detailed subtasks with individual timelines or priorities.

I don't know, but my guess is that WP is overkill for me, though thoughts and tips I've picked up may be somewhat helpful in better organizing my work / life.

I may try the trial version but I guess I've already missed the boat, er, Watership. I thought that it may be extended but I guess not.
Jan 28 2014 at 1:38pm Copy Link
_*_ MojoMan, I too thought there would be one more day to give the trial a go then chose to buy or not. I guess it is another potential 5 year wait!
Jan 28 2014 at 4:26pm Copy Link
HungryForDeals Not too cool only one day. An app this complicated should give more time... Oh well, it's probably too granular anyway. Looks to me like I'd spend more time planning than doing! If we had more time to test, maybe I'd feel differently, but with a quick view, it looks that way...
Jan 28 2014 at 5:05pm Copy Link

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