How I got organized and nearly made a million

My favorite organizational tool this year is the one that almost made me rich.

Mulling over the ongoing problems with my tickler file, it hit me one day: why not have some way of sending myself an e-mail that will arrive at a certain time in the future? You wouldn’t need a program or an app, just an e-mail address that acts like a well-timed boomerang.  Use it right out of your current e-mail thingy.

And you know what? We could do it. David knows enough about web servers and Javascript and html and css and all that good stuff. We can just purchase a man-sized web hosting plan, set up our e-mail server, and I’ll betcha dollars to doughnuts we’ll monetize that thing.

All people have to do is put the time and date for their reminder in the subject line or in the e-mail address, and Boom! It’s done. This will be the sweetest Getting Things Done tool ever!

Just as David was settling down to work out the knottier aspects of e-mail servers, I thought to Google the idea. And there it was:

EXACTLY AS I HAD PLANNED IT. Those people are making a killing on MY idea. But if you can’t beat’em, join’em! I use every day, and my e-mail inbox is empty for the first time I can remember.

Next time, though, we’ll beat them all to the punch. This next idea was temporarily ruined by Windows 10, and then we heard that Microsoft was planning to STEAL our idea and build it into an upcoming Windows update—but we’ll beat them. They can’t execute it the way we can. You see, the brilliant part of our idea is that—

Actually, I’d better not say. You never know who reads this blog.

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Author: Dr. Holmes

Dr. Jeremy Holmes teaches Theology at Wyoming Catholic College. He lives in Wyoming with his wife, Jacinta, and their eight children.

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Reilly Sweetland
8 years ago

Hi Dr. Holmes – It’s great to hear we were thinking along the same lines. But I can tell you, the moment a new idea (like FollowUpThen) is released into the wild is the moment the work really begins. FollowUpThen was a simple idea to prototype, but getting it from “first release” (~5 years ago) to now has been thousands of hours of work. We are not quite “making a killing” yet, but we are expanding – thanks to thought-provoking blog posts such as this : ) We may be releasing an API at some point, so if you’d like… Read more »