sortelyn

Evernote task list - what is the problem?!

7 posts in this topic

I know this has been discussed a lot and Evernote has no intention of becoming the ultimate task list. But I have to give my 5 cents after looking into the challenge.

Evernote could be the ultimate task list

===============================

It can record everything, not just mails but also pictures, voice, clips and everything else as you all know. However it seems very limited in putting this information into a timeline. As i'm aware there are 2 fields available related to time tracking:

1) created

2) updated

Evernote is almost there

===================

When I post something into evernote I typically save it because I need it later - mails i respond to, follow ups and information related to other daily tasks. Also following a lot of practices from TotalWorkdayControl and GTD, time is important. A calendar is no good because it will simply pass by the date and the task will not show up in any overdue task list.

Evernote is almost there. You have to interpret the created date a little different: "created date is the date until which this note should be hidden from my OVERDUE list".

With this simple interpretation, you can make two saved searches that holds your future TODO's with todays todo's at the top (just sort correctly on creation date) and your tasks that is OVERDUE. To complete a task simply assign the "done" tag.

saved search TODO:

created:day -tag:done

saved search OVERDUE:

-created:day-1 -tag:done

Evernote problem

==============

This means that Evernote actually has a date field you can freely manipulate (created date) and that can be interpreted and used to make a task list. However it is just hidden to far away to be practically useable!

1) In the Mac client it is hidden under a menu, to it takes more than 1 click to manipulate it - which is unacceptable for a task list.

2) In the mobile version it is not possible to manipulate it as according to my test (I use the Iphone app).

SOLUTION SUGGESTION - AND WISH!!!

================================

Make manipulation of the created date field available with one-click and keyboard shortcut in all clients.

Then you would have the ultimate task assistant combined with the brilliant Evernote ability to handle all kinds of media. Hope you implement this very very soon it would be a small change with ground breaking effect! :-)

Best regards,

sortelyn

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I handle dates with tags in Evernote. My date tags are in the form #YYYY-MM-DD, so they will sort usefully. Today's tasks were tagged #2012-08-16, and when I came into the office this morning I clicked on the tag (in my Windows client), selected all the notes, and assigned them the !today tag. I then deleted the #2012-08-16 tag.

I have a set of saved searches that present today's tasks in my various contexts: "Today at Work", "Today at Home", etc. Rather than having a "done" tag, I have a "Completed" notebook -- when something is done, I move it from my "Active" notebook to my "Completed" notebook.

This leaves the "Created" date as something that can be useful: "This has been on my list since June," if I care to know that.

Anything that's overdue is still tagged !today -- if I wanted a separate !overdue tag, I could apply it before I handle my daily date-tag process above.

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I know this has been discussed a lot and Evernote has no intention of becoming the ultimate task list. But I have to give my 5 cents after looking into the challenge.

Evernote could be the ultimate task list

===============================

It can record everything, not just mails but also pictures, voice, clips and everything else as you all know. However it seems very limited in putting this information into a timeline. As i'm aware there are 2 fields available related to time tracking:

1) created

2) updated

Evernote is almost there

===================

When I post something into evernote I typically save it because I need it later - mails i respond to, follow ups and information related to other daily tasks. Also following a lot of practices from TotalWorkdayControl and GTD, time is important. A calendar is no good because it will simply pass by the date and the task will not show up in any overdue task list.

Evernote is almost there. You have to interpret the created date a little different: "created date is the date until which this note should be hidden from my OVERDUE list".

With this simple interpretation, you can make two saved searches that holds your future TODO's with todays todo's at the top (just sort correctly on creation date) and your tasks that is OVERDUE. To complete a task simply assign the "done" tag.

saved search TODO:

created:day -tag:done

saved search OVERDUE:

-created:day-1 -tag:done

Evernote problem

==============

This means that Evernote actually has a date field you can freely manipulate (created date) and that can be interpreted and used to make a task list. However it is just hidden to far away to be practically useable!

1) In the Mac client it is hidden under a menu, to it takes more than 1 click to manipulate it - which is unacceptable for a task list.

2) In the mobile version it is not possible to manipulate it as according to my test (I use the Iphone app).

SOLUTION SUGGESTION - AND WISH!!!

================================

Make manipulation of the created date field available with one-click and keyboard shortcut in all clients.

Then you would have the ultimate task assistant combined with the brilliant Evernote ability to handle all kinds of media. Hope you implement this very very soon it would be a small change with ground breaking effect! :-)

Best regards,

sortelyn

Hi. Welcome to the forums!

Thanks for the suggestion. The data used to be viewable for all notes through a toggle setting in the menu. This was removed for the Mac client, but it remains in the Windows one. You may want to consider bootcamp, or a Windows machine if this is crucial to your workflow.

Personally, I find it too much trouble to fiddle around with created and updated dates, and because we cannot access them on the iPad or iPhone, I could not use this organizational approach anyhow.

I prefer to hard-code the date into my titles by having everything as YYMMDD + keywords. I create a research journal note every day with a list of tasks to do at the beginning. I look at this every morning, so I don't miss anything. If I have some kind of future task, I just create a note with that title. When I sort my journal notes by title, everything is in chronological order, so I basically have my calendar right there. After I adopted this method, I stopped using Google Calendar and Remember the Milk, because I know longer needed them. It works for me :) Here is a link with screenshots:

http://www.princeton.edu/~cmayo/evernote-organization.html

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Thank you for your suggestions. I agree on the fiddling with dates is a general problem with task lists. Now I have experimented with this very interesting approach for doing effective task management:

http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs004/1100358239599/archive/1109511856508.html

+ You never fiddle with dates and there is a psycological mechanism to make you do the tasks you really find hard to overcome - very clever!

- Because you don't fiddle with dates you will typically screen and touch the same tasks several times - the full mailbox problem. In practice I have yet to test if this really is a problem.

I have modified the approach a little to have

3 "Saved Searches"

1) TODO

2) Tasks

3) Completed

And 3 tags

- t (tasks - 1 letter makes it easy to attach on phone)

- DO (tasks that are chosen for todo)

- completed (assigned when the task is completed.

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Thanks for posting that! It looks like Mark put a lot of effort into creating his system, and the video helped show how that would work. Good luck with it :)

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I do use Evernote as my ultimate task list. I learned how to set it up that way here: http://www.thesecretweapon.org/

This was just what I needed!  I've been trying to implement GTD with Evernote but was frustrated at some missing task features I was used to having on my old Palm OS.  I think tags will bridge that need.

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