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Jan 2, 2018

Toodledo 2017 - The Year in Review

Jan 2, 2018 Happy New Years from Toodledo!

In 2016, we re-designed and re-engineered the entire website to work better across all types of screens (desktop and mobile). This was a major undertaking, but with more and more of our visitors using Toodledo on mobile screens, this was vitally important. It turns out that this was too big of a project to fit entirely in 2016, so one of our main goals of 2017 was to finish this project, monitor it, and optimize it. This means that 2017 wasn't as flashy as previous years, but it was all important work.

Here is a short explanation of what we worked on in 2017:

Tasks
The brand new version of the Tasks section was released in March. It was the result of more than a year of effort, starting from scratch and re-engineering the entire thing using the latest technology. It works equally well on desktop and mobile screens and it works offline too! So, for a lot of people, they wont even need to use a app - the website will work just fine. We spent the remainder of the year continuously improving this new section: listening to feedback, making small changes, fixing bugs, optimizing syncing, optimizing loading, testing, etc. We are very happy with the result.

We know that, as a customer, this isn't a super exciting change, because the new Tasks section mostly works the same as the old Tasks section, so it appears that we didn't do much this year. I assure you, that it was a big effort and in the long run, I believe that this was the right move for Toodledo. The old Tasks section was getting a little long in the tooth and hard to maintain with 12 years worth of old code.

Many of you still prefer the old Tasks section because it is familiar. We respect that, which is why we haven't forced the new section on anyone. We are going to continue to improve the new Tasks section with the hopes that more people will switch over to using it full time.

Notes
In 2016 we completely re-engineered the Notes section to work on mobile screens and work offline. Most of this year was spent fixing bugs related to this, and optimizing things to make it work better. We also began work on WYSIWYG or Rich Text editing of notes, but this isn't ready for release yet. It turns out this is really hard to do, which is why you dont see it too often on websites.

iOS app
Im not going to beat around the bush here. The iOS app is in a bad state. The Toodledo iOS app was first written for iOS 2.0 back in 2008 (10 years ago!) and it has been updated continuously for a decade. Apple is very agressive with their iOS updates, often requiring that an app make major changes to work on the new phone or operating system. Over the years, all these changes on top of changes, upgrading from iOS 2 all the way to iOS 10 have caused our app to take on a lot of "technical debt". So in 2016 we threw out the old code and started over with a clean slate. The work on a new version of Toodledo for iOS continues today, albeit slower than we all would like. In the meantime, our new mobile/offline friendly website will work great for anyone who cant handle our aging iOS app.

Android App
With more and more of our users coming from Android, we spent a lot of effort this year on improving our Android app. Here are some highlights:
+ Reassigning tasks to a collaborator is now possible
+ Subtasks are now displayed inside the parent task
+ You can now edit a goal's level and archived goals are now hidden
+ The timer field is now editable and can be started/stopped in the app
+ Added context and tag filters
+ Dividers now show the number of tasks inside, and can be collapsed/expanded
+ Improved how links and HTML formated notes are displayed
+ Improved how tags are edited
+ Added an app shortcut (tap and hold app icon on Android 7.1+)
+ Improved the search feature to search notes as well as task titles
+ Improved syncing and a number of other smaller things

Overall
+ We improved security by forcing SSL encryption for all connections. It is no longer possible to use Toodledo without encryption. This was a big effort that happened behind the scenes, but it was important.
+ Improved importing of tasks from other places
+ Completely redesigned the homepage to be nicer and communicate Toodledo's features better.
+ Added the option to purchase a subscription that automatically renews monthly, for people who dont want to have to remember to manually renew their subscription every year.

Reliability
We were able to maintain an uptime record of greater than 99.9% for the year.

Conclusion
All of the above is just the highlights. We made hundreds of other smaller improvements and fixes across all aspects of our product.

We know that our communication in 2017 was not as prolific as it has been in previous years. This was mainly because most of our work was in behind-the-scenes stuff that had nothing to communicate. We also could have done a better job at communication. However, another thing to keep in mind is that Toodledo has been around for over a decade. It's a pretty mature product by now. The velocity of improvements to Toodledo cannot be expected to remain as it was in its earlier years. Personally, I believe that we made some mistakes with adding some features to Toodledo and ended up with a somewhat complex and cluttered experience. We are trying to be more careful with new functionality that we add to Toodledo in the future. We want to make sure that it really is important functionality that makes most people's experience better, and isn't just adding stuff for the sake of adding stuff.

Our main goal going forwards is to make sure that Toodledo works reliably across as many platforms as possible and continues to be a powerful and useful tool to help people stay organized and productive. We appreciate all the support and suggestions that we have received from everyone. Thanks to everyone for making Toodledo a success.

Happy New Year!

PS. Please use promo code "newyear18" at checkout to get 10% off a subscription or renewal for you and your friends.
Apr 24, 2017

Import your Wunderlist into Toodledo

Apr 24, 2017 For those people thinking about upgrading from Wunderlist to Toodledo, it is now much easier. We have built an easy to use import tool that can quickly transfer everything over to Toodledo. Now that Microsoft is thinking about shutting down Wunderlist, it might be a good time to do this.

Steps:

1) In your Wunderlist website account settings, click the "Create Backup" button and download this file to your computer.
2) Go to the Toodledo JSON Import page and upload that file.
3) Preview the results and press the "Continue" button at the bottom of the page.
4) Thats is! You are now using Toodledo.
Mar 17, 2017

Android App Update v6.4.0

Mar 17, 2017 Version 6.4.0 of our Android app is rolling on today and tomorrow. Here are the changes:

+ Adds Context and Tag filters to the show menu
+ Fixes a bug that caused the saved search menu to be blank for some people
+ Fixes some bugs with saved search, filters, external keyboards and timezones
+ Fixed copy/paste into task title
+ Keep the tray open to the section you are in
+ Allow syncing more than 1000 notebook entries
+ Fixed a bug with “Untitled task” appearing when it shouldn’t

If you don't see the update available now, it should become available in the next 24 hours.
Mar 7, 2017

The New Tasks Section

Mar 7, 2017 Toodledo has been helping people organize their tasks for over 12 years. Much of the original programming for the Tasks section is still in use, which is good, because it shows that the Tasks section is robust and well tested. However, technology has changed in 12 years and it was becoming more and more difficult to add new modern functionality to this old code. So, about a year ago, we started rewriting the Tasks section of Toodledo using the latest technology.

We've been "done" for several months and have been extensively testing the new Tasks section with our Beta Testers. They have helped us fix a lot of bugs. A few weeks ago, we opened up the new section for anyone to preview and we've gotten a lot of good feedback. Thanks! The bug reports have trickled down to almost nothing, so its time for a more official release.

We won't be replacing the Tasks section just yet, we want to take it slow so we don't disrupt anyone's workflow. Right now, everyone will still be seeing the old Tasks section when they come to Toodledo. If you look in the bottom right corner, you'll see a blue tab with an exclamation point on it. If you open this, you'll have the opportunity to start using the new Tasks section. Here is the new URL:

https://tasks.toodledo.com

You can bookmark this new URL if you want to go straight to the new section all the time. We'll make the new Tasks section the default destination for everyone at some point in the future.

We didn't want to make people less productive, so we took care to keep everything familiar and to keep the functionality pretty much the same as before. That said, we did take the opportunity to make some changes where we thought we could make a big improvement. Here is a list of the major differences, with our explanation for why we made these changes.

Mobile Friendly Layout

The new Tasks section is completely functional at any screen size. You can view this page on your desktop, your tablet or your phone and it will automatically scale to the size of your screen and work perfectly. You no longer need to use our special (reduced functionality) mobile website and for many people you won't even need to use a dedicated app to access Toodledo from your phone. The Toodledo website in your phone's web browser should work great, and in some cases may have improved functionality!

Tray

The 'Add Task' and 'Batch Edit' drawers have been moved into a tray on the right side of the screen. This allows you to more easily reference your to-do list as you add or edit tasks. This is an important improvement for tablet and laptop screens, where adding a new task used to take up a majority of the screen. Now you can easily scroll through your list and reference other tasks as you add new tasks. We have also moved the "Add Task" button to the right side of the screen to minimize mouse movement between clicking the button and then entering the details of the new task. You can use keyboard shortcuts to do all of this as well, so mouse movement is not required. This change also made the experience consistent across desktop and mobile browsers, so regardless of what screen you are using, everything will be in the same place and work in the same way.

Subtasks

We're using new icons to better indicate subtasks and subtask groups, and we have also made it easier to distinguish between a task and a subtasks by moving the checkbox for subtasks inside the group. This allows the icons on the left side to maintain their vertical alignment which makes the page cleaner and easier to use.

Performance

We put a lot of emphasis on speed with this update. Previously, loading a long list of tasks could have taken 10 seconds or more due to the old technology. Now, a list of any size will load very quickly. If you have over 500 tasks, you'll notice the speed improvement right away. We have also made many other common actions faster. For example, editing the priority of a task used to take 3 clicks, now it takes 2. Things that use to be prohibitively slow are now possible. For example, you can now see "badges" in the Saved Search section to show the number of tasks inside each Saved Search, and when you add or edit a task, the badges and list counts update in real time, you don't need to refresh the page anymore.

Saved Search
Creating or editing a saved search has moved to the sidebar. We did this for two reasons. First, it allows the behavior to be consistent across mobile and desktop screens. Second, for desktop users, it allows you to view the matching tasks while you continue to edit and refine your search. This makes it much easier to fine tune a search. This was much more cumbersome before.

Calendar
The Calendar view has been merged with the Dates view to put all of the date related lists in the same place. In addition, the calendar has been entirely re-engineered. Now, you can select any range of dates that you want, and it will show you the tasks that fall within that range. The old calendar couldn't do this.

Offline Mode
Already, the new Tasks section has some offline capabilities. If you are using the new website and your internet connection goes away, you can still keep using Toodledo. As long as you don't close the window, you'll be fine. When the internet comes back, all the changes you made while offline will sync up with the server. We are already working to improve this so that you don't have to keep the page open while offline.

We are very excited about this new Tasks section and we hope you are too. Please let us know if you have any feedback.

Older items have been removed for brevity.