Address Book

What do you use it for?

If you’re like me, you don’t really have a main place to store your addresses. You store your addresses, but it’s not in just one place; it’s in your Outlook Contacts in the office, Outlook Express at home, your PDA, Yahoo! Addresses, your nice leather-bound diary and worse, bits of paper containing email addresses or phone numbers!

This function enables you to store all your contacts information in a single place, freeing you from looking for that one email address or phone number that you know you’ve recorded, but can’t remember where you recorded it.


  • Unlike Calendar and Thoughts, there is a save button. However, Contacts or Contact Lists are automatically saved when you click on another contact or close otak, *unless* you didn’t create a valid Contact record (no First or Last Name) or Contact List (no Contact List Name).
  • Even though you technically don’t really need to use it, make a habit of clicking on it if you want to be sure you’re saving the record – the autosave is a safety net of sorts.
  • You can use the email addresses you stored in otak in 2 ways, both by right-clicking on the Contact or Contact List you want:
    1. Send Email: Call up the default email client as defined in Windows with the To: field filled in
    2. Copy Email to Clipboard: Copy the email addresses to memory and you can paste it in anywhere you want. You’ll typically use this if you want to copy the email addresses to a web-based email client like Hotmail or Yahoo! Mail. If you’re copying addresses from Contact Lists, you can specify if you want the addresses to be separated by commas (for use in Yahoo! Mail, for instance) or semi-colons (for use in Outlook or Outlook Express, for example).
  • If you’ve defined Categories, you may assign them to Contacts and Contact Lists. You can then filter the Address Book list by selecting a particular Category from the drop-down box, and then only the selected Category will be listed. If you clear the drop-down box, everyone will appear again.
  • Double-clicking on the individual members listed under the Contact List will immediately bring up the Contact Information for that Contact List member.
  • For otak to import Contacts from other address books, firstly export the contacts information to a CSV file (for Microsoft Outlook, the format should be CSV (Windows)). otak can import from CSVs generated from Microsoft Outlook, Yahoo! and Gmail. It probably works with more than these, but these are the only ones I’ve tested and known to work.
  • With regards to the Import/Export functionality, note the following:
    • Category information and Contact Lists are not exported.
    • Not all fields can be exported because of CSV format definition (for example, otak cannot export more than one website – Microsoft Outlook lists only one website per Contact!). Another example would be information like Instant Messenger IDs (i.e. Yahoo! Messenger and AIM or whatever). These can be in otak, but the importing program wouldn’t know where to put fields like these.
    • For the same reason as above, not all fields will be imported from the CSV file (for example info like Telex numbers, Pager Numbers or custom fields).

The Rough Guide to otak: