There is a really broken thing on your computer and I am constantly amazed that it hasn’t been fixed. It’s the way addresses and contacts work. The issue is this: on a computer, you should never have to enter the same information twice, but that’s what keeps happening in your contacts.
Think about Katherine and me. How do we feature in your address book*. Most people used to have the couple at their home address in their address book with the house phone and then underneath you have something saying, “Alex Mob” etc.
But now in the electronic world you want to be able to know that when one of us calls you on the phone you have the right name pop up. So you set up both people individually, with their own mobile number. But where do you store the home address and the home phone number? Generally, you end up putting the home number on both people. Luckily my iPhone is smart with this and would say “Alex or Katherine calling” if the home number calls me.
But there is a problem. Something is broken. I’ve had to enter the home phone number twice, same problem with the address. But why? There is no real reason.
Personally, I think the way it should work is that you are able to nest information. So a regular person that you put in the contacts is at the top level. When you scroll through the contacts you only see this top set of people exactly as you do now. However you would be able to add a subordinate set of information – these would be houses, offices, children, etc. They would, in reality, be contacts exactly like the normal contacts, but they would be owned by at least one other contact, so don’t show up in the normal list.
That way, if we move you only need to change the address once. If your work friend, Karen, is in the phone and you want to add their partner’s name, you would make a subordinate contact. It wouldn’t normally show up, but when you need to remember Steve’s name, it’s there. Suddenly Karen can’t come to the football and Steve’s coming, you have a place to put his name and you can later work out which Steve it is. Then after the game, you actually exchange e-mails and suddenly Steve is a real mate so you promote him up and he no longer belongs to Karen. He’s just a regular contact and you don’t have to copy and paste that info out of some notes field you were using.
Surely this is the right way to do it?
*Obviously there’s a good chance we aren’t in your address book, but instead replace the names with some other random names of a couple that you know that you pluck from the air that make sense for your address book.