Running on AIR: Great office apps you can get now

There aren't many robust business applications powered by Adobe's new rich Internet application platform yet, but we found a few gems you can download right now

 Site description: WagerWidget with one click lets you view the lines, spreads and "over/under" across three of the most influential sports books in the world.

Site description: WagerWidget with one click lets you view the lines, spreads and "over/under" across three of the most influential sports books in the world.

Nevertheless, here are 10 AIR apps that have the best potential for use in the office that you can download and try now.

No. 1 -- Doomi and MiniTask

These two are simple to-do list apps. But you shouldn't expect either to offer a multitude of ways to organize and prioritize tasks, or other enterprise-level to-do management features. The idea behind both is to allow you to spend more time doing your tasks rather than managing them.

As Felix Raab, one of the developers of MiniTask, sums it up: "MiniTask is an alternative to complex and bloated task management systems; it lets you organize tasks really fast and stays out of your way."

"Doomi is designed to be dead simple, easy to use, and look damn good on your desktop. It doesn't really do much else than what you would expect it to do; I think that's why so many people like it," said Doomi's creator, John Giannakos.

Still, Giannakos plans to add more features. The most intriguing will be syncing Doomi's to-do list data with cloud computing services.

No. 2 -- Klok

Klok is intended for freelancers and consultants who need to track their time spent working outside of the office. Before starting development of Klok, Rob McKeown had evaluated other free time-tracking applications but found them frustrating to use. "I wanted the simplest possible way to indicate what I work on throughout the day and have it automatically translate that into a time sheet, without any intervention," he said.

He decided to build Klok using AIR because he wanted an application that didn't need an Internet connection to be used. "Many of the time-tracking applications that are freely available are all Web-based," said McKeown. "The fact that [AIR] doesn't require an Internet connection allows anyone to use it at any time."

He plans to expand Klok so it can also be used by small businesses that have multiple consultants working on the same projects. Version 2 will have a pluggable data-access layer that will easily allow synchronization with QuickBase for QuickBooks.

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Howard Wen

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