While taking my daily look at Stuff for Getting Things done, I stumbled upon an article about putting the Outlook calendar on your desktop. In fact, as I looked deeper into the program I discovered that you can also put your emails and tasks on there as well.
I've had some experience with desktop calendars, although none were as functional as Outlook, but I can say that I didn't get much use out of them. I find that they go against my zenishly clean desktop philosophy and clutter more than they help out. I also like to separate work stages as much as possible, so actually having my Outlook in a separate app is good for me.
On the other hand, Outlook on the desktop is quite good, and I think the reason is that it puts your Outlook calendar on your desktop. You can see a few calendar items immediately and it's fully functional so you can also interact with the calendar, emails and tasks.
All this is fully customizable, you can select which modules you want to see, where you want to see them, and you can even control the opacity (visibility). It also supports multiple monitors, and for some productivity nuts, this will be paradise! I like that there are some subtle features as well, like displaying the day of the month on the tray icon. I can determine the day without it of course, but still, a nice thought, better than just having some icon.
Oh, and it's free of course, so go get it!
Update: Outlook on the Desktop is no longer available, the program website returns a not found error when you try to load it. I suggest you try DeskTask as an alternative as it can display the Outlook calendar and to-do list on the Windows desktop as well.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.