Jump to content
dlries

(Archived) To do's

Recommended Posts

I love evernote - it's great and makes my life easier in terms of keeping notes. However, for me, the biggest thing missing is the ability to pull out to do's easily. It would be great if I could select a block of text and make it a to do item to which I could also assign attributes such as the due date, owner, etc. The next bit would be for evernote to allow me to manage todo's from all note's in a single place with out having to search through each note. Let's face it, if we're using this to take notes in meetings, you're going to get things assigned to you eventually . . ..

Share this post


Link to post

Evernote is adding some due date functionality, but, 3rd party apps such as Zendone are where full task manager features will appear.

e.g.

Share this post


Link to post

EN uses an elephant head and the slogan "Remember", but it has serious problems doing this itself. I'm going to describe what has happened in the past few hours, but it is representative of past performance as well.

I started up to add a table for some current research I am doing on a couple of product lines. I selected the table feature and selected my table matrix (rows x columns). I just wanted a starting place, figuring if I need another row, or another column, it would be simple to add when needed - ooops, not so, you can't modify a table to add a row or column that I could find in 20 minutes of looking for some way to do it.

I spent the next 2 hours adding content to the cells of this table.

As time went on, I took phone calls, and then had to leave my laptop. I ended going out to look as a supplied, who sent me to another supplier next city over, who then refereed me to yet a 3rd vender. At that point, I needed to make notes of the name and phone number I was being given, so I opened EN on my Android phone to use the same record I have built this table in an hour earlier. That note didn't show the table I had entered. No worries, it will still be on my laptop when I get back. So I used that same note to write down the name of the business, the contact I should call, his direct phone number, and the address. When I got outside to my car, I thought it would be a good idea to call before driving further to yet the next city. My HTC EVO doesn't all me to paste the phone number written in EN to the phone to call, even thought it is on the clipboard, there is not way to paste it to the phone to call. Finally, I did a web search to get the number and select it so the phone would dial, and it rang. The message said their hours, which indicated they closed an hour ago. However, somewhere in this process, all the contact info had been lost, including the name of the person and his direct phone number, which I was never able to use (unless I had a paper and writing stick, which a well designed system would have never required. I don't ever remember having this issue on my Palm PDA.

When I got back to me laptop, took it out of the sleep mode it had fallen into after I had left it running, it had lost the entire table I'd spent 2 hours constructing. My entire afternoon had become a waste because EN didn't remember anything I'd entered on either the laptop, or the Android.

The concept that a program such as EN, can loose valuable content without the permission of the author is anathema to common sense! Deleting or loosing any content that didn't involve a direct instruction from the author, makes the program dangerous to a user's content. None of this involved an an unexpected power failure, causing the computer to crash. I don't ever remember having to save any note I wrote in Palm, are we devolving backwards? If you wrote content it 2 places and they tried to sync them, Palm would place duplicates of both notes on both devices and let you sort out or edit to get everything with out loss, not so EN.

I realize EN is a work in progress, but shouldn't it have started on a solid foundation of what Palm build over a decade ago?

A few weeks ago, I want to check out a car for a friend. Since EN has the ability to take photos from my phone directly, I proceeded to take about 8 shots of the vehicle. I didn't get any warning, so I thought I had captured all I needed, including the vehicle ID tag in the door jam. Later I went to review what I capture to discover only the last 2 photos were there, the rest had simply disappeared without a trace or message. Can't trust EN to remember, so disappointing!

Further, I'm dissatisfied that to modify an existing message I have to locate and activate an edit function, not just select a message and add to it, or make some correction.

Share this post


Link to post
EN uses an elephant head and the slogan "Remember", but it has serious problems doing this itself. I'm going to describe what has happened in the past few hours, but it is representative of past performance as well.

You have posted this separately, as a new topic, as this doesn't appear to have anything to do with the thread topic.

Share this post


Link to post

I've never really found "to do" lists to be that difficult. I make one for each day, and the things I don't get done, I copy and paste into the next day to move it forward. This seems to work pretty well, and today's "to do" list is always at the top, so it's no big deal. Personally, I don't see any need for Evernote to add a "to do" type feature. Lots of other apps exist to get this done.

Responding directly to the OP, why not just copy those blocks of text and paste them into today's "to do" note?

Share this post


Link to post

Good suggestion for a daily todo list. That practice takes discipline but so does using EN consistently. The trick then, it seems, is to organize notes into a hirarchy that lends itself to identifying time and subjec priority.

Since I am new to EN, I will ask for suggestions on note organization strategy sources and threads.

Share this post


Link to post

I don't know about organizing notes into a hierarchy. EN doesn't do this especially well. I know I don't have an especially cluttered schedule, and my to do lists each day only consist of ten or fifteen items, but my method seems to work ok. Just make a note every morning, paste what you didn't get done yesterday into it, and you are good to go. I don't think it requires much discipline. In fact, I am lazy, and that is why I rely so much on EN!

Share this post


Link to post
I've never really found "to do" lists to be that difficult. I make one for each day, and the things I don't get done, I copy and paste into the next day to move it forward. This seems to work pretty well, and today's "to do" list is always at the top, so it's no big deal. Personally, I don't see any need for Evernote to add a "to do" type feature. Lots of other apps exist to get this ?

Exactly what I do, very simple, very effective, very little time to setup and maintain.

Share this post


Link to post

Similarly fast, easy, and effective (for me, at least): Each to-do item is its own note, usually just with a title and without body text (or only as much as is necessary to remind me of the details I can't fit in the title). Each is tagged with one or more of a couple GTD-inspired tags:

1-Tasks [highest level, with the below tags falling under this one]

——!!-Today

——!-Next

——!-With due date

——!-Without due date

(I also have context tags, but those aren't as relevant for this.)

Each day, I look at what's tagged with !-Next, !-With due date, and !-Without due date, and I add the !!-Today tag to those I need/want to get done today. That way, whenever I click over to !!-Today, the visible list of notes is today's to-do list (and I only need to look at the note names in the list to see what and how many they are). When I (sadly too often) don't get a !!-Today task done one day, it remains there for me to do the next day. And it's very easy to move notes/tasks around between !-With due date, !-Next, and !-Today (or to file notes/tasks under more than one of those).

Share this post


Link to post

The reason I used to push Evernote so strongly for a "Due Date" field is because I use Evernote to track a lot of future stuff.

The checkbox is helpful, but the list of to-do notes is not sorted by the task date.

So I modified Evernote and use the "Created Date" field for these future tasks.

They range from typical to-do items, meetings, and appointments to more exotic or unusual reminders.

I would rather not cut and paste the list of 150 or so items into a new list every morning.

A Few Examples:

2014 08 15 - Refrigerator Extended Service Plan expires

2014 03 01 - Driver's license expires

2013 07 01 - Call for bi-annual septic service

2012 11 06 - Past predictions for the Presidential election

2012 11 10 - James Bond movie #23 to be released

2012 04 24 - LastPass auto renew annual membership

2012 01 32 - New tabs for Mini Cooper

etc. etc.

.

Share this post


Link to post

I am still using a mixture of tools to manage tasks.

Google Calendar: Appointments and Events. As per the GTD gospel, these are best handled by a calendar. This also provides push reminders on my Touch.

Remember the Milk: Current major active tasks. RTM widgets available for Google Calendar and Google Mail. Most items in GCal replicated in RTM. Recurring tasks in a mixture of RTM tasks and Daily and Weekly To Do Notes with checkboxes.

Evernote: New tasks and detailed actions for a specific tasks are recorded in Evernote. In most cases I have a single master note for a single task. I add checkbox to new Evernote items which require action. I process my EN inbox daily to zero. I use a saved search to review primarily recent Unfinished tasks and either complete the item or update RTM.

New tasks come from a variety of sources.

  • Google Mail. I use GMail filters to automatically forward select mails to Evernote. Most of these do not require any action beyond reading the item and usually fall within the two minute rule. Items like newsletters which I want to read but are not important are automatically archived in GMail. Other tasks which are important are left in the inbox. Items such as forum notifications are left in my GMail Inbox but NOT forwarded to Evernote. I maintain daily GMail Inbox to Zero.
  • Phone calls. I create a new journal note for each call I receive. Action items are recorded with checkbox in that journal note. Future items are recorded in GMail or RTM as appropriate.
  • Clips to Evernote. e.g. Problem report in these forums which require test/research to answer. New tool to investigate. etc.
  • Problems / new actions which result from executing a task. I journal everything to Evernote and add new checkbox items as needed. Works well if I get pulled away from a task and need to catch up later.

I know that I have eliminated a lot of RTM tasks in favor of Evernote notes/items. e.g. New music or movie releases that I may want to listen/watch/acquire. I have also stopped using various grocery/shopping applications and now use 3 notes in Evernote.

  • Household Needed
  • Household Todo
  • Household Someday

I have been testing Zendone and suspect that I will be moving to it when it stabilizes. Workflow issues to resolve before I do that, but, promising.

So, bottomline is still a work in progress, but, process well started with most details recorded in Evernote.

Share this post


Link to post
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...