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RebDebGordon

Posted: Nov 20, 2012



@JPR - that was my point -- it's clunky AND it introduces the opportunity to accidentally delete a different search that you meant to keep.

And back to the first post: FAR more important than renaming saved searches is the ability to save ALL modifiers with a search. For me, that primarily means saving the sorting, but as Osaga posted originally, for others it means filters and collaborators as well.

Still love Toodledo, still find it quite intuitive: It thinks like I do. Thanks again for a great program.
RebDebGordon

Posted: Oct 27, 2012



Another reason to allow renaming of searches: Because when I'm trying to find just the right name for the already-saved search, so it shows up in the order I want AND it's short enough to read, I leave old versions littered behind me and have to go back and delete them.

And then I accidentally delete the wrong one.

Deb
RebDebGordon

Posted: Oct 27, 2012



I'm a little over a week into moving over from OmniFocus, and long before that LifeBalance. For me, as someone said, "fractalizing' subtasks is a great way to waste time in playing with TD that should be spent actually accomplishing things. Most of my tasks are routine or at least familiar, so if I say "collect eggs daily, wash and pack" I certainly don't need 3 separate tasks. "Paint Living Room" just needs a note about what supplies I don't have yet. Or, in another part of my life, "Prep Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah Class" gets a note about what I'm planning to teach next or where we finished last week; they syllabus lives elsewhere, or I suppose could be in a Notebook.

What I've learned is that most of my "Projects" are really "Tasks." If the project is complicated enough to really need to be chunked up into various parts, and I expect to have to look at those parts together occasionally, GOALS is the natural home. I'm surprised nobody mentioned that.

TD's restrictions (and I haven't even signed up for Pro yet so don't have subtasks as I'm exploring) have actually forced me to think more clearly about what's what. My key discovery is that Projects are mostly a way to see whether every major task related to a particular goal has been recorded in TD. Once it's in there, I pretty much never look at the Project again. All that matters is that the tasks show up at the correct time with requisite priority. So levels of hierarchy aren't part of how I filter things when I'm actually USING the to-do list.

If something depends on something else, I number the tasks (later it will be subtasks, I suppose) and make an appropriate sort level "Alphabetical", or make a note about what's next. I don't mind modifying a task to become the next task, instead of checking it off; that way only one shows up at a time. If a task/subtask requires further chunking into pieces, its status is "Planning" and I make sure that "Planning" shows up in many of my saved searches.

So: Tasks are Next Actions and also Small Projects. Short-term Goals are Big Projects that can actually be completed (Plan wedding, Tutor child for bar/bat mitzvah, Winterize yearly, Paint the living room, and also lists e.g. "Blue Van Repairs", "Music for the Choir to learn"). Long-term Goals are Really Big Things I Want To Accomplish That Will Take A Long Time And Which May Be Neverending (Landscape, Keep good farm records, Work with a disabled congregant). Lifetime Goals are guiding values, highest commitments, and un-ending reaching for improvement ("Parent Well," "Be Responsible," "Eat Good Healthy Food)". I don't really need the Lifetime Goals to keep anything organized, but they're rather motivational because they remind me just WHY I am taking kids to open savings accounts, sorting the mail, or buying fresh garlic from the garlic lady. There will be work goals too but I haven't imported most of my work tasks yet from OmniFocus so examples are lacking.

I don't like the way "Goals" are sorted in the pop-up -- I'd rather have it be strictly alphabetical rather than having to remember what kind of goal I decided something was --- but I think that if I preface them with "P" (Personal), "F" (Farm), or "W" (Work), I'll be able to find what I'm looking for easily enough.

Folders allow me to exclude personal tasks when I should be doing professional work and vice-versa; they distinguish between Work, Home, Farm, and Errands, with a special one for Death & Crisis since I'm a rabbi and when there's a crisis I have to track it even if I'm on vacation. So most searches include "OR Folder = Death & Crisis" as part of every search term so that those always show up. Ditto a tag called "Today without fail" which permits e.g. essential Errands to show up on Work and Home searches.

Contexts @Inside @Outside @Synagogue allow me to filter by places I must physically be to accomplish the task; further subdivision is in tags.

At the moment I'm also using Context for Locations (meaning stores) for Errands, but I look forward to the Location functionality.

Tags like CALL, call/email, COMPUTER, DESK, chore/physical, FOCUS needed, easy/mindless, big, routine, before leaving for work, cooking ... allow me to slice and dice according to other kinds of "contexts " -- what am I feeling ready to do right now? I probably don't even need "Computer" except to exclude it, because once I'm on the computer I'm easily distractable. I hate making phone calls so when I'm in a mood to accomplish them I need to be able to find them easily.

So I came in thinking that I needed many levels of hierarchy, and found that that's not really how I work.

Deb
RebDebGordon

Posted: Oct 27, 2012



I've been using Toodledo for about a week. I know from working with other organizers (e.g. Omnifocus) that after a while one get it mostly set as needed; but the ability to be able to RENAME SAVED SEARCHES would simplify use at the very moment the program is most confusing and time-intensive, namely when one is a new user. Therefore, O Developers, it would entice new users to stay/not frustrate them and send them away -- a key concern for you. In other words, the payoff from making the entry process smoother is probably higher than from tweaking things for advanced users (sorry, advanced users!)

So it's not just about saving a few mouse clicks. It's about saving subscribers.

Actually, it was never just about saving a few mouse clicks: It's about not having to keep name details in my head while I redo searches. *That's* not just inconvenience but potentially a real difficulty, particularly since one can't widen the sidebar to see the whole name.

Why? I have a number of searches with similar names, trying to indicate to myself the details of how I've sliced and diced. This is (I hope) a temporary necessity as I figure out how to use TD, but it's crucial right now. E.g. "Home Inside Active+Today" vs "Home Inside Active+Today Sedentary/Easy" vs "Home+Farm Active+Today" vs "Home+Farm+Crisis Inside Phone Calls" ... Trying to remember just what I've tweaked in my effort to get the right collection of tasks to show up (usually based on mood/energy/context and given that right now projects and contexts and locations and attempts to indicate how much focus or energy a project takes are muddled about among Goals, Tags, and Contexts -- again, a beginner's importing problem, as I learn to think like TD and not OmniFocus) ... anyway, keeping track of what I've just done requires that I write down the details. I don't want to have a separate piece of paper and a pencil, I want to encode it in the title of the search. Then as I refine my searches, I want change the name to either reflect what I've done or, when I'm ready, to make it fit in the sidebar. I've also changed my alphabetizing scheme a couple of times already.

So you see, the need to re-copy (most of) an intricate title AND THEN select and delete the one that's similar but now obsolete -- especially given I can't necessarily see the end of the titles -- introduces the possibility for accidentally deleting the search I've just spent all that time perfecting.

Again, it's not just about saving a few mouse clicks. It's about saving new user/subscribers -- and you can bet that someone trying to use it in ways this complicated will become a subscriber.

On the other subject, tho of slightly lesser importance:

I strongly second the request to be able to remember filter settings with ALL views, not just saved searches!! For searches, your documentation expressly states "When you've gotten it looking just as you want it..." or something like that -- and it's not true. Not quite. What if I quickly want to find all negative priority items of a certain type so I can review them? And more generally, what if I just entered a task that won't be due for 2 years and realize I need to add a tag, or I want to see if I've got all future tasks properly listed for some big goal? Since I keep those hidden, I have to change my universal filters. Again, becomes less confusing with use (even just a week's use), but annoying.

As to reordering saved searches, it would be nice but it's way down my priority list; numbering or prefixing a letter solves that one just fine.

The reasons I am using Toodledo rather than competitors are:

= Sorting by Importance (what I missed most when I switched from LifeBalance) -- I've read some of the suggestions about the algorithm, but it works well enough for me.

= Priority -- the main reason I stopped using OmniFocus. There are no satisfactory work-arounds in the absence of multiple sorts -- another thing I appreciate

= Tags -- the other reason I stopped using OmniFocus

= Mobile app (tho without the ability to access saved searches it's useful on a much simpler level)

= Location (haven't bought yet but expect to) -- one of the things I loved about OmniFocus was their map on the mobile app

= Ability to import/export; without that I wouldn't even have looked at it. Recreating thousands of entries was not an option.

= and last but not least, SAVED SEARCHES. Without the ability to customize the viewing of the data, slicing and dicing it to match my own squirrely brain, and save those views for future use, a to-do list is useless to me. And I want it to be as automatic as possible: If I have to think/remember how to set up a particular view, I'm likely to make a mistake. It does help that you announce how many tasks are hidden, and I'm beginning to trust that and rely on it. But I don't like having to reset the filters after changing them.

Hence, saving filters along with other parts of the search, and ideally remembering them for preset views, would be the biggest single improvement for me.

And is it really that hard to program?

Thanks for a fine product.
Deb
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