What is the purpose of the areas tabs since clicking on an the area tab (at the top of the page) does not pull up an area. I can’t see how the tabs are functional at all except as a reference when selecting the area in the action details section.
These areas are in fact “tags” that you can use for filtering (reducing) what you see. They do not bring anything “up”; what they do is eliminate everything else.
The areas can be used to represent areas or roles that you play in your life, such as “Teacher at XX School”, “Home owner” or whatever suits you.
In GTDNext you have two ways of implementing such areas systematically. You can either use the action hierarchy on the left, and keep your areas at a high level, then the various projects filed under each of those areas, and the actions under the respective project. That makes for a neat and easily reviewable hierarchy. You can also use the area “tags” that you asked about. That makes for a flatter hierarchy, with more projects available in one click from the list on your left. (Perhaps you can even find a way to combine both methods.)
I suggest you make a pick and implement it systematically.
@Folke is exactly correct and explains this pretty well. Let me know if you have any questions after reading his response.
I for example have Areas for “Work”, “Home”, “Personal” “Volunteer” and a few others. This helps me narrow down what ever list I am viewing to show just the projects or actions for that area.
Have you set up your areas yet? If not, use the Area link in the left panel towards the bottom.
Great questions, keep them coming!