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Trog Bar

CNET Editors' review

Stress can be alleviated, say the gurus at TROG Bar, if we understand that it isn't the result of being too busy, but instead from trying to manage (and actively remember) all of our tasks all at once. With that in mind, the TROG Bar presents a flexible system to keep your tasks organized and offers you help getting the most from the program.

TROG Bar (which, by the way, is short for Total, Relaxed Organization Guru) integrates nicely with Microsoft Outlook and can work in conjunction with several popular task management systems such as Franklin Covey and Getting Things Done (although these additional systems are not necessary). Just plug in what you need to remember in TROG Bar (or Microsoft Outlook, once you have installed TROG Bar), the priority you place on that particular task, and the corresponding dates, and TROG Bar will remember, remind and prioritize via the handy TROG Bar sidebars. The sidebars give you at-a-glance information for completed and open tasks and are easy to follow.

Much like the animated assistant Microsoft offers, TROG Bar has a Neolithic cartoon coach to help you. Even if you aren't enamored of this approach, we suggest you permit this feature to get the most from the program.

TROG Bar is moderately priced, and offers the standard 30-day trial period for evaluation. If you need help staying on top of everyday tasks, this flexible tool can help.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews

Results 1-6 of 6

  • 5.0 stars

    "Major improvement on GTD"

    February 1, 2010  |   By robjoseph

    Version: Trog Bar 2010.02.08

    Pros

    TRO takes all that is good about Getting Things Done (GTD - David Allen's famous system) and makes it even better - easier to maintain, clearer what-to-do-next prioritization. My stress level has dropped and my productivity has soared.

    Cons

    Font on the TROG bar is a little small for easy readying, but workable.

    Summary

    Here is a letter I wrote on Jan. 19, 2010, to Kevin Crenshaw, the CEO of Priacta. (I am a customer of Priacta, but not affiliated with them in any other way).

    Kevin,

    I have been using TRO since I went through your course over Thanksgiving weekend, so about eight weeks now, and yesterday, I had a little episode that pointed up how crucial TRO has become in my work life (and psychology!).

    Someone sent me a virus in an email, and like a dummy I clicked on the link, so the next thing I knew, I had to shut my computer down and hand it over to IT, to wipe the hard drive and reimage it. I brought in my backup laptop -- which does not have Outlook or TROGbar on it -- and got busy handling email and tasks through our company's web portal, while IT was working with my "real" computer.

    Within a half hour, deprived of my TROGbar, I was plunged into the half-remembered, stressed-out bad old days of trying to hold everything in my head, not knowing which way to turn, interrupting and "switch-tasking" myself every few minutes, inbox-diving, trying to read four emails at once and letting people hang around the door to my office asking for "just a minute." Up til now, for the past few weeks, I have felt like under TRO I had been shooting down "taskers" like ducks at a carnival game all day long and smiling at how much they pay me to handle this laughably easy job; but now I was running around like a waiter with too many tables, and too many orders to remember, and too many dishes coming out of the kitchen, hating every minute of it. Don't get me wrong -- I coped. But suddenly I was reminded how uncomfortable just getting through the day is, if don't have TRO easily available. I THOUGHT I HAD LEFT ALL THAT BEHIND!

    In a few hours, Roger the IT guy handed me back my fully restored laptop, fully restored that is, except for the TROG bar. I went to Priacta's site, downloaded the program, entered my key, and I was amazed to see TROG synch up with Outlook as though nothing had happened. I started collecting tasks and emails that had come in since the virus, then processing them, and then working down my list as easily as before. Calm and sanity restored. Ahh!

    It's scary how chaotic the world can be without TRO. Now that I am used to working that way, it is downright painful when I can't. Fortunately, as your happy customer, I don't have to.

    All the best, and thanks again for TRO.

    Rob Joseph

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Nice product for keeping all the tasks together"

    December 21, 2009  |   By mhutch71

    Version: Trog Bar 2010.02.08

    Pros

    Very easy to use and setup

    Cons

    tends to mark everything as task that needs to be either closed or delted.

    Summary

    Have a lot of tasks or groups of task this is a good problem. If you dod not use tasks that often then stay with Outlook.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Excellent task manager, well integrated in Outlook"

    March 26, 2009  |   By schottyd

    Version: Trog Bar 2008.04.10

    Pros

    Integration wtih Outlook is excellent - none of the normal hangups or resultant crashes that other products seem to cause. The whole thing is backup up by a solid time management system and training that really changed my personal productivity.

    Cons

    Occassionally at startup it grabs the outlook .pst file before Outlook does - workaround is to close it - restart outlook.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "My most important app"

    November 7, 2008  |   By spromisel

    Version: Trog Bar 2008.04.10

    Pros

    Well integrated with Outlook without being embedded as add-in, methodology provided (TRO) is even more useful than the tool itself, flexible processing and categorization of tasks and email, Priacta provides fantastic support.

    Cons

    Takes a bit of time and practice to tune to my specific needs, online help can be improved, really need field guide at extra cost to get the most out of Trog Bar (but it's worth it).

    Summary

    Trog Bar has become one of those indispensible tools you use all the time, and made even more valuable by implementing the TRO methodology as well.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Really usefull app"

    October 29, 2008  |   By pepe_popo

    Version: Trog Bar 2008.04.10

    Pros

    Summarize the info and tasks from Outlook
    In a couple of seconds you can check your tasks
    you can create tasks, mails, etc with one click

    Cons

    Only in english

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Organizes you as advertised, with a simple interface"

    October 17, 2008  |   By nkbh

    Version: Trog Bar 2008.04.10

    Pros

    Makes choosing next tasks a breeze, also lists of tasks by category, meeting, etc. Drag-and-drop for action email is relaxing. Stays out of the way until needed. Doesn't interfere with Outlook, tasks show up both places automatically.

    Cons

    Can be hard to set up right unless you choose their GTD-compatible "TRO" approach option. Needs "strategic calendar" to give good task recommendations, more setup time. Default "hover select" feature annoying, had to turn it off. Needs better help.

    Summary

    Overall,, Trog Bar has earned a permanent place in my productivity tool set. I lean on it heavily and handle a lot more because of it. I'd be lost and buried in emails and tasks without it. Still, it has room for improvement: the graphics are a bit dated, search is faster than Outlook but slower than Xobni, but Xobni doesn't do tasks, and that's where Trog shines. No reliability problems, install was easy. NOTE: Only works with Outlook 2003 or later.

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