Flickr Photostream of Scrybe
The internet has more and more entered its way into everything we do as a society. It has become an awesome resource for information and communication. The new frontier is using the internet as an application. The beginning of this is personal information management apps or PIM for short. They usually consist of a calendar a contact list or some place to take notes. Think of your day planner and now put it on the internet.
That is the idea behind what the team building Scrybe are trying to accomplish. They are also trying to bring the information to you even if you don't have an internet connection. This is done through what they call papersync and creating a page that can be used offline. They looked to have a great idea but let's see if they hit the mark.
Logging into the site is simple enough. One thing to note is that you have the ability to save your workspace for when you are offline. This can be done because the whole site is created in Adobe Flash. This means even if you are not connected to the internet you can still use the site. Once I logged in the cool effect of the year calendar was overtaken by the moth calendar. Clicking any of the days in the month expanded the day and allowed me to enter events with set times. Clicking the day again caused the day to overtake the month calendar. Now we were at the most detailed part of the planner showing me every hour and all my events for the day. A nifty option is the ability to add a second time zone. Since I live in Southern California I added the New York time zone so I would be able to plan calls with business associates that accommodated us both. I did have a tiny bit of difficulty navigating though. That is because the menu does not look like a menu. You simply click the area you want to work in, so to add the second time zone you click on the time zone listed and set your primary and secondary time zones. To back out from the day view to the month or year you click the name of the month or the year listed at the top of the page. It was intuitive once you knew it and everything flowed very well.
I then noticed an are on the top right that had themes and options. The themes allowed me to change the color displayed while options let me set the hours I am active, the scale to use for the day. I choose 15 minute increments. The options also had time and date format, what day to start the week on and reminder settings. The reminder settings allowed me to add an e-mail address and set a default for how far in advance I wanted to be contacted about the event. So far all very basic items that should be in a planner or calendar. The next items I checked out in the top right were the refresh and updates available. Refresh obviously allows you to clean the page up if, for some reason it did not re-draw correctly or it seems to be stuck. The updates available is for when you go back on-line you can sync the planner to the internet server in a sort of back up. The other option is to papersync. Papersync is simply a way of printing the calendar out and allows the user to fold it into a booklet or pocket booklet format. It also includes an area that can be used to write down notes or new scheduled events when you are away from your computer. All the items were clear and worked well.
Next I took a look at the thought pad. It's the area you can add almost any kind of data you find on the internet or copy from you desktop. At this point they did not allow me to upload files but it was on the way. Scrybe did allow me to copy and past all sorts of stuff from the internet though. I was able to add the address of websites, pictures and videos. I was even able to highlight parts of a page with text and pictures then past it all into a note. I even was able to use the thought pad as a contact list. I was not able to test the option of copying a list from Excel because I don't use Excel and the thought pad can only delete notes in IE (internet explorer) or Firefox so I am a little bummed about that. Something that more and more websites are adding is a bookmarklet feature. Think of it as a save to bookmark. This allows you to surf the internet and when you see something you want to save you simply click the bookmark the site gives you. With a little bit of java-script magic, the page you want to save is now saved in there website as a link. Scyrbe does this too but again it only worked well in IE and Firefox. Overall though the thought pad looked to be useful.
Scrybe is a great choice if you are looking for a basic PIM and like using IE or Firefox. For someone like me who uses Opera, I was able to do almost everything I needed to. Although it was annoying when a button was clicked to confirm a delete and nothing happened. It is also a pity that the bookmarklet did not work in Opera. I use the one created for Pownce all the time and it ends up being extremely useful. Since the site is still in beta it's hard to say if you should use the site one way or another. For what is available and working I would say the site is very promising though.