This is another email I put together for a family member and thought I’d share with my blog since it may come in handy for some folks out there…
One trick I’ve learned is using certain substitutions in google when searching for things, for instance using “Open Source” instead of “Free” will generally turn up higher quality results in regards to applications. (one exception to this rule is anti virus software, there being several good free solutions and only one or two open source applications)
Another source I like for things like this is the website www.lifehacker.com, which is a general productivity/self improvement type site. I searched that site for “project management” and got this. You can read through the summaries quickly and see which ones are tips and which ones are actual downloadable programs. I trust this site not to link to spyware/viruses/questionable-stuff, so you could download and install one of the apps they link with confidence.
One last thing, often I find the comments in the lifehacker.com posts to be as informational as the actual post itself, usually finding several more good suggestions above and beyond what the lifehacker writers have suggested. A quick glance at the comments will also tell you if the application in the main post is any good. For example on this post, there are 3 links to project management programs in the post itself, and the first two comments link to 2 others.
Something called GantProject keeps coming up in all the lifehacker posts as a very good and easy to use project manager that functions very much like Microsoft Project. It may be worth checking out.