Wunderlist, Tomboy Notes, DoIt.IM

DoIt.IMYou may recall that about a year ago I had settled on Wunderlist as the go to software for keeping track of the task in a list format that offered reminders and such.  Part of the reason I settled on Wunderlist was the native app offered in Linux, which shortly after my choice was dropped.  Well, not formally dropped, but the updates for the other OS were not made available for Linux and the Linux download link was replaced with an available soon.  The backwards step of dropping the native Linux app and the buggy nature of the software combined with the clumsy way it worked for somethings was enough to have me looking for something else.

For a brief time, I went back to using Tomboy Notes, in a fashion similar to what I had used previously.  Basically, there was a note for each day (by date and day name).  I put the tasks for the day in a list format on the note for that day, allowing me to note scheduled tasks out for sometime into the future, though in reality most of my stuff was focused on the three days forward including the current day.  I tried to sort the list in order of what was most important to do first, though there was no really nifty way to group things, such as for the office, for home, or whatever.  Anyway, as tasks were completed, I would change the font to strike through.  At the beginning of the next day, I would copy any remaining tasks not struck through to the next day.  Clearly, upsides for me was the native Linux and the easy ability to synch across multiple devices in several ways.  Clear downsides were the clumsy nature of they way I was doing things, the lack of grouping, and no real way to do a project type group – several of the same issues I was having with Wunderlist itself.

Enter a tip from a co-worker (thanks Tim) that suggested a new app that is largely web-based called DoIt.IM.  I was a little reluctant to try it, since the app is available for the iPad and family, as well as Android, and if I recall maybe there is version over on Windows – but in general they point to a website for usage.  I did give it at try eventually after pondering it for a bit, and I am very glad I did.  Other then the lack of native Linux application, I can not find anything to even remotely complain about with this to-do manager app.

First, the obvious, it is web-based, the ability to synch across devices and platforms is easy.  I have it installed as an app on the iPad and my new Andriod based phone, and while I do not use either much for accessing, it is handy to know when I am on the run I do have those options available to me.  I do use it regularly without any confusion on both my work laptop and my desktop, sometimes within minutes of accessing from one machine and the other.

The ability to add and edit tasks is very simple to do and entire system is fairly easy to grasp the concept of.  The general idea is to put task in the ‘inbox’ folder until you figure out a timeline for when it needs to be completed, but you can go ahead and schedule it for today, tomorrow or specific date at creation time as well.  The inbox feature I find handy for those that I know need to be done and that I will forget about if it is not noted, but am unsure of where it can fit into my schedule at the current time.  There is also a great general non-defined time, called someday, if I am remember correctly.  I want to do the task, but have no firm plans on anything anytime soon at this point, great concept.

Stepping up to make it just awesome is the ability to group things, like afore-mentioned home, office, etc. You can also give task tags, to further define them and allow easy searching, though I have honestly used these very little except with in the grouping of blogs, where I have tagged it for the various blog that I think it should be posted too.  There is also the ability to give things a priority, so that if I am looking a day of tasks, I see by color what is more important for that day.

The most awesome part of DoIt is the ability to convert, by simple push of a button, a simple task into a project.  For instance, one my recent tasks was to put the hitch back on my boat trailer.  Granted, a fairly simple process, but I had several smaller elements of that task that had to be completed before I can even really begin with the hitch installation and then I knew my drill was only going to get so far before I would have to stop and recharge.  I converted it to a project, which lets me put individual task into the project and I was in business getting everything prepped, checking them off, until the whole project/task was complete.

There are some other features, that I have not used, but that are clearly nice.  For instance, I can assign tasks, even parts of a project to someone else.  With that, it lets me note what I am waiting on someone to complete before I can proceed.  It is something to explore at some point, but for now, I will be happy using the great features I have already explored and discovered that I like so much.

** – Image is large size logo varation for DoIt.Im.