Author Archives: Nari Kannan

Support for Social Networks

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We are working hard on a number of new things to support Social Networks like LinkedIn and facebook. Our task list includes:

a. Inside facebook Integration – Being framed within facebook, being able to use it within facebook, invite your facebook friends to join and share activities with you, etc.

b. Making it easy for logging into dunnitt from your existing Social Networking Logins like your facebook, twitter, MySpace, Google, Yahoo ones.

c. Being able to import friends or contacts from the above social networking sites, invite them to join dunnitt and share activities with you.

Our goal is to remove every hurdle you think there is, from participating, and using dunnitt!

Let us know your thoughts on what other social networking or other kinds of memberships you want dunnitt to support.

We hope to release this in a few weeks time!

What business are we in – Micro-Collaboration! And get more out of Existing Social Networks

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This week we figured out that the business we are in is Micro-collaboration!

Twitter is used for micro-blogging! When what you have to say to your social network or friends is short and sweet like what you are up to at that time or share an interesting web page you have come across, you use Twitter to share that information in a micro-blog!

dunniitt is all about micro-collaboration! You want to simply find out the status of something you are collaborating with your friend, family or colleagues at work or solicit their opinion about something, you need a micro-collaboration tool.

Micro-blogging is one way but micro-collaboration is every direction with every participant. Every micro-collaborator will be able to see what everyone else says in real-time from any device, any where !

Examples of micro-collaboration are:

  • Trying to set up a meeting with one or more people and trying to find a suitable time that works for everyone.
  • Catching up on the status of some activity you shared with somebody else.
  • Trying to organize a potluck dinner and making sure you don’t end up with everyone bringing only desserts!
  • Doing an informal poll on what kind of restaurant people at the office would like to go to for Friday’s lunch.
  • Creating a shopping list and more than one person updating it from anywhere in real-time!
  • Performing a quick brainstorm among two or more people on activities you can do this coming long weekend

Your family, friends and colleagues are all distributed among various social networks like facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Twitter, Gmail, etc. How do you collaborate with them without resorting to email and phone? Dunnitt!

You should be able to find your friends among multiple social networks, bring them into smaller lists of people you want to micro-collaborate with and then do it!

That’s what we are upto!

Mobile phone support for dunnitt

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Currently we are planning support for the following smartphones:

  • iPhones
  • Android
  • BlackBerry

One of our members suggested that we look at supporting the Symbian for Nokia.

What other phones you would like to see supported?

Current option types and new ones we are planning

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Under the pulldown menu Options, currently you will see the following entries:

  • Text Only
  • YesNo
  • Question
  • Sign Up Sheet
  • Multiple Choice
  • Meet Up

This gives us the ability to extend the capabilities of dunnitt by including new types as users provide us feedback on what they see missing.

  • Text Only – These are for tasks or activities you set up for yourself or for some other person or a group of people. These are tasks such as Take the dog for  walk, Remember to pay the utility bill online, etc. You can create them for yourself or for somebody else – say to your assistant at work – Can you please cancel all my meetings next Tuesday?.  If you send it to a group of people, say – Put your deflector shields up!. Everyone will be able to see whether everyone is done putting up their deflector shields! 🙂 This is the default.
  • YesNo –  These are questions that require a Yes, No or Maybe answer.  For example, you could ask someone – Would you be able to make it to Susan’s party on Saturday?  The comment is an optional field where they could explain. If this is sent to a group of people in a dolist, everyone will be able to see everyone’s responses.
  • Question – This is to avoid calling someone on the phone or sending them email just to ask a simple question  – Who still remembers our 10th high school reunion? What do you remember about it?.  Can be sent to yourself if you are in a reflective mood – Where did I go wrong? 🙂 .
  • Sign Up Sheet –  This is to get people to sign up for various activities or things they need to bring to a camping trip or a party. Everybody can see everybody’s responses as and when they are entered in.  Sign up sheet for Friday’s Potluck at John’s house.
  • Multiple Choice –  Multiple Choice types have two options – Choose One, and  Choose All That Apply. The idea here is that sometimes you may want to poll a group of people about something- Which kind of food do people like to get tomorrow for lunch?,  you want to ask your coworkers. You choose Mutiple Choice, Choose One and then type in where it says Choices – Sandwiches, Chinese, Indian, Soup and Salad, No Thanks!. Or you could make the same, Choose All That Apply. In this case each person you send this to, can choose more than one choice. Everybody can see the vote tally up as of that time.
  • Meet Up Type  – This is useful for asking a group of people whether a certain date and time would work for them for a meeting or a group date, for example. Will this date and time work for everyone to meet for drinks at  Art’s pub, downtown? Then you select a date and time and send it off to a dolist called OffficeFriends. Each persons answers Yes or May be. If they answer No, They can suggest up to two alternative dates and times.  Everybody can see what works and what doesn’t for everyone. The organizer can then finalize and send out another final Meet Up request that works for all or a majority.

These are the existing option types. We are thinking of new ones. Here is a preliminary list.

  • BrainList –This is a cross between a BrainStorm and a Shopping List!  It is simply a list of 20 or so placeholders for one or more people to create a list collaboratively. The idea here is that you can fill out some of the placeholders, share it with one or more people, and all of them will be able to edit it any time. It could be an office Brainstorm – Give me me ideas on what activities we can arrange for our Office Christmas Party  or Suggest some restaurants we can go to after the Sunday’s ball game.  The same could be used as a shopping list that you fill out in the morning. You could be shopping in the store already while your spouse updates this list about some items that were forgotten from home. You could see the list as it is updated on your iPhone or other smartphone!
  • Compound Activity –  This is an activity that is composed of many sub-activities and each one is assigned to one or more people.

That’s what we are thinking of , so far!

Let us know what you think and what else could be useful for you!

How does dunnitt help you avoid email or phone tag?

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Twitter is powerful because it allows those you are interested in, or those that are interested in you, track what is happening or what is interesting at that particular moment in real-time.

dunnitt is trying to do this for Tasks and Activities. Without using email or the phone, can you coordinate your activities, tasks, fun stuff, in real-time with family, friends and colleagues at work?

When you are trying to coordinate tasks or activities with anybody other than yourself, the possible communication mechanisms and modes that people are comfortable with gets in the way.

You send email, then you call to verify whether they saw the email or not.

When it involves more than two people, the number of combinations going back and forth increases. This is something people can solve by just appointing one person to coordinate things. But then, this is the only person having knowledge of what is going on with all others!

dunnitt’s goal is to provide a mechanism where everybody can see in real-time what the latest status of the coordination is. If someone suggests a possible date and time for meeting for drinks, everyone will be able to see what works or does not work for all others.

If a complex activity involves multiple people, everyone should be able to see what the current status is with all of the activities.

That’s what we are shooting for in dunnitt.

Let us know how important this is to you, if we are achieving what we are trying to do, what else could get all of us there.

What is the precise problem we are trying to solve with Dunnitt?

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If it is just you and some one else, coordinating things is easy!

If it is 3 people and more, just trying to get something organized gets people into Email and Phone Tag! It may happen even with two people, but with three people the chances are more and the potential for confusion is more if everybody starts calling everybody else and coordinates!

Twitter is Many-to-Many Information Sharing in Real-time.

What if you had Many-to-Many Activity Sharing and Updates in Real-Time, from anywhere, any place and any device?

That’s the whole idea behind dunnitt.

What if you had a number of different kinds of Basic Activity Types like a simple Text Description or something that needs to be done by you or by others? Or a Yes/No question that you send email about just to find out a yes or no answer?

Or you had a question that requires a simple one phrase answer or the name of a person. Why call someone on the phone or send them email and wait for an answer?

Email and Phone are inevitable. But we all are sick of the Email overload we already have and the phone calls made back and forth just to leave a message or listening to a message left while you were in some other meeting.

Why not take whatever percentage of those simple kinds of activities off to a separate utility?

What do you think?

What led to dunnitt.com?

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My son is in the 8th grade, and in a competitive basket ball league, here in Pleasanton,CA.

Every week, his coach sets up practice sessions for all the members. Every week, he has problems contacting all the kids or their moms or dads over email, or the phone, to find days and times that will work for everyone. Some were comfortable with email, some with voicemail. There wasn’t one mechanism where all the parties concerned could coordinate these activities collaboratively!

On another occasion, my son was trying to set up a movie date with all of his friends. Same problem! He was trying to do it with Facebook, Email and Voice mail, all with different people using different mechanisms.

This is what led to the thought- What if there was a single location on the web where you could create and share these activities with yourself, your family, your friends or colleagues at work and that’s all you did there? Everybody manages things they need to do and things that they share with others in this one specialized website.

What if you were automatically informed if someone completed an activity you shared with them?

What if you could remind them if they have not responded?

What if you could access this shared pool of activities from any browser or any smartphone, anywhere, anytime?

If  it is one or two people, Email and Voicemail works well. If the number grows beyond two or three, then you start playing email tag or telephone tag or both! One single repository of all of this activity could enable everybody to do this very efficiently and effectively, no?

That’s what led to dunnitt.com pre-beta!

Please use the  pre-beta release, recommend it to your friends, family members and others!

 Tell us what worked, what didn’t, what was useful, what wasn’t, what is still needed?