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How are you using Folders?



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Jonathan

Posted: Jun 01, 2009
Score: 0



I use Pocket Informant on the iPhone and whenever I add a project on the App it creates a Toodledo folder. Technically the way I see it that's the way it currently is programmed to work Projects=Folders, but its very poorly implemented in Toodledo. It's a bit frustrating that even though Toodledo has some of the best support among 3rd parties and add ons but lacks such a simple yet very important GTD concept. I have seen comments of requets to change this from over a year ago in the forum and nothing done as of yet, I hate to sound negative but it doesn't seem like its going to change anytime soon, which means I will have to find another solution for my GTD system.
TheGriff

Posted: Jun 01, 2009
Score: 0



Might I suggest Pocket Informant may be the issue? I've not used it but I have looked at many of the other apps that use the same methodology.

While I admit to thinking of going to the folder approach I have to admit being happy with using the parent/child subtask approach for my projects.
Anders

Posted: Jun 01, 2009
Score: 0



Posted by TheGriff:
Might I suggest Pocket Informant may be the issue?

I agree with TheGriff. Todo, while flawed in other areas does Projects much better than PI, and they use Parent tasks as Projects. The Toodledo app leaves everything as it is on the site, so using whatever method you are accustomed to online is pretty simple. PI does not hand Toodledo all that well IMO. There is a feature request in the PI features forum that would help solve this ( Better PI-Toodledo Syncing ), and they really need to support Toodledo's subtasks as well.


This message was edited Jun 01, 2009.
Baja Jack

Posted: Jul 28, 2009
Score: 0



Hmmm...It's my first day of full toodledo implementation. I'm transitioning from a very satisfying palm desktop implementation of GTD (the palmOS import failed me completely, but I was able to transfer all my stuff from plaintext pretty easily). As of right now (4 hours experience) I can't figure out why I would use folders. My Projects and Someday/Maybe lists are additional contexts. I treat them differently during my weekly review, but if I want to identify mutiple actions I have that in the notes under the project. Contexts are for next actions only. With this implemenation, I don't expect to need subtasks, although for $15 I would upgrade if I became convinced I needed it.

BTW, I still use my Palm TX. Besides webaccess to Toodledoo, it is easy to export my tasks in .csv and import them into a little database on my palm. It isn't as slick as a full sync, but I'm still mobile and more device agnostic than I was yesterday.


This message was edited Jul 28, 2009.
Baja Jack

Posted: Jul 28, 2009
Score: 0



And a quick follow-up. My primary reason for choosing ToodleDo over RTM is the export to .csv and .txt. I can't keep up with the constant changes in publication and proprietary formats. These two are as close to universal as anything in computing.
Mashton72

Posted: Aug 07, 2009
Score: 0



I use folders for projects although when projects become unspecific such as 'Work' then it could arguably be a Context.

Haven't started with tags yet though I already feel I spend too much time setting the task up in the first place.
Proximo

Posted: Aug 07, 2009
Score: 0



I just change my entire setup to resemble what I call a GTD Template. I still don't use Folders for projects, but I do have a Project folder where all projects live.

My projects are still Task with sub-task. I just collect them all in a Project folder. Love this setup.
Jason Bentz

Posted: Aug 12, 2009
Score: 1



Interesting. I started using Toodledo a while back, and based on this thread, finally worked out a system that works fairly well for me.

Folders - used for general areas of focus

Inbox (used for quickly adding tasks that I don't have time to file)
Work
Personal
Leisure
Contacts (used for reminders about people, birthdays, etc.)
Someday/Maybe
Vehicle Maintenance
Buy/Sell
Job (job search)

Contexts - used for locations, or denoting project/next action

.Calendar (used for reminders)
.Inbox (used for quickly adding tasks that I don't have time to file)
.Project (if I have a project, it is a task, which will have this context, then the subtasks will be the childs, and will have other contexts, this allows you to pull up projects by filtering by context)
.Research/Read (any time I need to do some research, or read a book)
@Computer - Home
@Computer - Office
@Errands (mobile tasks other than at home or office)
@Home
@Office
@People/Calls (face to face meetings or phone calls)

That is pretty much my system for now. If a task is just a single thing, such as, pick up milk at the store on the way home from work, then it will be just a task, in the folder "personal" with a context of "errands." If a task is involved, and requires multiple steps, then the overall project would fall in a given folder (generally personal or work), then under the .project context. The subtasks are just that, subtasks, that fall under that main task, and will generally be in the same folder, but with a different context that applies to that task.

This seems to be working pretty well for me. I open the online version of Toodledo, select folders, and pick the one I want to work on, then filter by context, if I'm at a computer, at home, or at the office, or about to go out and run errands, etc. I can do this same thing on my iPhone too.

Hope this helps someone, if you are struggling. It took me 3 times of completely redoing my system to end up here. I did kind of like using folders for projects, but as others have said here, the workflow to do that just takes too long if you are trying to enter tasks quickly. It is way easier to just have a projects context (or as some have done here, folder), and select it when making a task.
Rory

Posted: Aug 12, 2009
Score: 0



It seems like a shame that one of the main reasons that people choose not to use folders for projects is simply that they are not as quick as tasks to manage.

I personally use folders for projects, and I agree that it's jarring to have to leave your current screen when processing your inbox in order to create a project.

I also dislike the fact that they list horizontally across the screen as many others do.

Is Mr Toodledo planning on working on these things? It would be really nice to be able to create a new folder by typing in a name in the folder dropdown, similar to how you can click the special button next to the date drop down to type in a custom date.
Lance

Posted: Aug 12, 2009
Score: 1



I understand those who like to use folders as projects, probably because it gives that project an extra level to work with:

Project (as folder)
Task
Sub task

However, for myself I would have about 80-100 folders since I have that many projects. Projects for me, are very closely aligned with GTD in that anything that requires more than 2 steps is a project.

Folder (area of focus, roles, relationships, etc.)
Task as project
Sub task (milestones or major events, sub-projects)
Sub-sub task (tasks to complete milestones or events, etc.)

If an extra level is to be added, I would prefer additional levels of sub tasks instead of using folders as projects. For those who require the added detail or want to list every step of every project, its there. And for those who don't use it presently, its an option for them if/when they want to use it.

I will qualify this because I migrated from analog GTD (paper) to digital. Check out David Allen's old school way of paper GTD. When it was mostly paper, all your project brainstorming and thoughts went on your project support paper. Often this was a sheet of paper that had all the details of your project, with all the next actions listed. Your 'lists' were all your next actions separated by context (just like Proximo noted in the other post) that you gleaned from your project page. Most of us would one list for each context, and a list of all projects.

I have a few habits that I carry over from the analog-paper based system of project planning and brainstorming in my notes field. So for me, folder just a list of my projects. Tasks as projects, sub tasks as next actions.

I prefer not to list every step or next action of a project as a sub task. Most every step of that project will be listed in the notes of Task as Project and from that I will pick the very single next action that will move that project forward and list it as a subtask. It's the more traditional way of GTD and still works well for me, but your mileage may vary.


This message was edited Aug 12, 2009.
Vin Thomas

Posted: Aug 12, 2009
Score: 0



Posted by Lance:

However, for myself I would have about 80-100 folders since I have that many projects. Projects for me, are very closely aligned with GTD in that anything that requires more than 2 steps is a project.

Folder (area of focus, roles, relationships, etc.)
Task as project
Sub task (milestones or major events, sub-projects)
Sub-sub task (tasks to complete milestones or events, etc.)

If an extra level is to be added, I would prefer additional levels of sub tasks instead of using folders as projects. For those who require the added detail or want to list every step of every project, its there. And for those who don't use it presently, its an option for them if/when they want to use it.
'

I am in the exact same boat. I would have too many folders to make it a viable option to use for projects. I would love to see another level of subtasks implemented before adding an additional field.
Jason Bentz

Posted: Aug 13, 2009
Score: 1



I have to jump on this bandwagon as well, one more for sub-sub-tasks.

That is how I setup my first implementation of Toodledo, with a Folder for every project, and then I had two levels of tasks that could follow that. I generally liked the way that worked, but like others have said, I have way too many projects, and the task list was cluttered.
Jarery

Posted: Aug 27, 2009
Score: 1



Sub-Sub Tasks would be my request for added functionality.Without it, it is awkward at best to manage large projects.
bragot

Posted: Sep 23, 2009
Score: 0



Posted by Qrystal:
Posted by patrick:
You can make the main task recurring as well, and it will contain the recurring subtasks! This is what I do for my monthy bills:

* "pay bills - first batch" is due on the first friday of every month, and contains a bunch of bills that are usually due in the first half of the month.

* "pay bills - second batch" is due on the third friday of every month, and contains the rest.

The bill subtasks are due when the bills themselves is due, repeating monthly (but since the actual bill due dates shift around a bit, I'll tweak it once I see the bill).

Just another thing that makes Toodledo so awesome~!!!


Is this something that basic users can do or do I need to have a premium account to do this?
Jay Armstrong

Posted: Oct 23, 2009
Score: 0



+1 for sub-sub-sub...tasks

As a workaround, I'm devising a system of saved searches so that I can use an infinite number for folders (as projects) but don't have to spend any time in the folder view. I'll post once I nail it down (and get caught up on my real work ;)
Proximo

Posted: Oct 23, 2009
Score: 0



I personally think that using folders as Projects is a work around to a bigger problem. Toodledo simply does not manage Projects.

Because I am a GTDer, I setup Toodledo to have the List David Allen describes.

These different list are my folders.

Action, Projects, Waiting for, Someday/Maybe, etc.

I use Parent/Sub-task to control projects although this is not the way to really do it.

If I could take the customization of Toodledo with it's many features and combine it with the way Nozbe looks and works. I would be in GTD Heaven.

Nozbe has one of the best GUI's I have seen for GTD, but it breaks the GTD concept in many areas.

Nozbe does have true Project Control, Full Drag and Drop across the board and the GUI rolls in and out of the way to give you access to all the fields you want for a task or project, without making your screen 12 feet wide.

What Nozbe lacks for me is the correct setup for GTD which I can create in Toodledo. Toodledo also has more functionality overall.

I wish I could hook them both up and produce a new baby......

:-)
stu

Posted: Oct 26, 2009
Score: 0



I was on the Parent/Subtask model until I wanted to do some global changes on my lists. I exported via CSV, edited in Excel and re-imported. However all my parent/subtask relationships were lost.

So I am now trying the Folder approach which works pretty well, except that the GUI on the Web and iPhone don't do a real good job of managing many folders. I think the GUI in both cases could be updated to support hierarchical folders (a folder where the name was separated by a '/') and you could see many folders easy to deal with which allows folders to be projects.
andy

Posted: Nov 09, 2009
Score: 0



I find it simpler not to use folders at all in favor of using context and tags to keep my tasks organized.

Likewise, I don't use sub-tasks and instead use a single task per project (with the note field documenting steps completed and to be completed, and with renaming the title to include the next step -- sounds cumbersome when I write it down, but works well in practice).

Finally, as part of this "keep the GTD implementation as simple as it can be" approach I only use two priority levels (low for active tasks, -1 for someday/maybes) and use start by and due date fields to allow Toodledo to prioritize the importance of tasks.


This message was edited Nov 09, 2009.
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