App Review: Finder Reminder

Category: Productivity
Price: $1.99
TiP Rating: 3/5
Release Date: Updated April 22, 2011
Current Version: 1.1
Seller: Timothy Allen
Rated: 4+
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 3.1.3 or later.

Link to app

App Store Description: Finder Reminder works using many proven principles of memory retention techniques including association and mnemonics. Remembering where something is becomes a breeze when you can link pictures, names, locations & descriptions to anything you can think of. In fact, even making the physical action to remember something (by entering it in Finder Reminder) increases your chances of remembering it later on!

Summary: Finder Reminder mimics the home page of your iOS device by placing icons related to the task or thing you need to remember. Clicking on it offers more details so you’re sure to never forget.

Review: I’m always looking for new ways to help organize and remember daily tasks, so when Finder Reminder creator contacted me about his app, I was excited to try another method. Plus, I was out of post-it notes and needed a quick fix. Finder Reminder is a memory tool that uses visuals, repetition, as well as a bit of muscle memory to help you not forget.

Visuals

When you open Finder Reminder for the first time, you’re already greeted by a few default reminders, which are there to show you how (and why) you’d use the app. The layout mimics the iPhones homescreen by limiting it to just icons that represent the item or task you’re trying to remember. There are already a number of these icons pre-installed in the app’s library, but you can also upload a photo from your image library or take one on the spot with your camera. I like that the image is the first thing you see since so many times just viewing the object will spark a thought or reminder about it.

I like using the general icons included for things that can contain more than one reminder, like the amazing beer I tried the other night, or the apartments I found while driving around. Otherwise, I tend to stick to my own images.

Repetition & Muscle Memory

Once I know what it is I need to remember, I go in and add extra details to give it a bit more context. This helps so if the icon alone doesn’t prompt your memory, you can tap on the “Details” tab to see what other extras you recorded. These include a description, location, map location (if applicable) and an email setting so you can send the reminder to yourself or someone else.

I thought of muscle memory because if you use the app to record enough reminders, eventually it will just become second nature to do so. At least, that’s the thought. I’m not quite there yet.

The concept of the app is great, but where I’m torn is its functionality. For example, I like that the icon and details are two separate items. So if I want to delete the details, but keep the icon, I can. But When I’m trying to delete the entire package, I have to click on the icon, then click on details (photo is default view) and then trash the package. It’s not a deal-breaker and probably only bothered me when I had to go through and delete all of the default reminders.

Another thing that kind of slowed me down is when I want to enter a new reminder, the name is already filled in with “!!New Thing.” I have to tap it, delete it and then type. When I’m trying not to forget something, the quicker I can get it down the better. I know that “name” is where I’d write the item or task, so I don’t need a default place saver.

I realize that this is just me being picky, but with so many productivity apps out there, I’m a bit more harsh when it comes to memory apps. I struggle with it a lot and want an app that’s going to work for me. As I said, the concept is great and I think the focus on the visuals is important. It’s still an early version and I plan to continue using it in hopes that it does become more of a routine. Now if only there were an app to remind me to write down my reminders!

Updated: I love developers who listen to their app’s users. Tim put out an update shortly after this review went live. Users can now swipe left or right to switch between the picture and detail view. I didn’t even think of that, but it’s an awesome addition. My feedback was a little nit-picky, but I’m happy so see the default name is blank (versus “new thing” that you would have to delete to begin typing) and that there’s an option to erase all data. There are a few more new tweaks, so be sure to update your app! Well done Finder Reminder team!

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