The Over-App-ed Syndrome

An app is supposed to make our lives simpler, not more complex. Maybe it’s time to go old-school.

Abigail Carter


To-Do List — Old School (Source: Abigail Carter)

Every night, slack-bot notifications on my Apple watch cause my wrist to buzz almost incessantly for five minutes. Of course, I can’t help but glance down every time.

Finding the right tools for the job

I work for a small boutique tea company doing their social media.

The founder recently switched our tiny organization onto Slack, retiring our Apple message group, “The Knights Templar Royal Academy Of Chesser Roe Secret Society Of Tea Nerds,” where we discussed everything from our favorite TV episodes to passwords to sharing photos for use on social.

It worked but wasn’t ideal. Photos and important info disappeared into message-ether. So the switch to Slack made sense.

For our founder, (I should mention here that he is rather ADHD and he *loves* technology), switching to Slack opened the flood gates to its integrated apps.

We were soon inundated with notifications about new integrated app installs: Workstreams, Todoist, Trello, Creative Cloud, Intercom.

We already grappled with Office 365, where oddly I can never find the files I need. We used Ring Central for our Customer Service and Zoho for I’ve lost track of what, and now he wanted me to test-drive for managing “big” projects, whatever that meant.

Hitting app overload.

On a call with him, as he explained the myriad of Slack channels he’d created, I think I glazed over on Zoom. He paused.

“I know this is really complicated,” he said.

“Yeah,” I said. “There are a lot of channels.”

“I can streamline,” he offered.

“OK, well, to start,” I said, “I really don’t think you need a #random-tasks channel for each staff member. They can take care of their own tasks,” I said.

“What app do you use for your task list?” he asked earnestly.

“Honestly?” I said, “I use the back of an envelope.” I held up my envelope to show him.



Abigail Carter

Writing about widowhood, parenting, life, grief, art, writing and publishing. #singlemom #author #memoirist #writer #widow #9/11widow #artist