In the world of task lists, to-dos, and time management processes, only one product has satisfied my long list of required parameters: Toodledo.
On the surface, Toodledo is a free web-based application that allows you to quickly set up a task list and get things checked off. However, it has all of the advanced features that I was looking for while still being accessible to the user looking for a quick and easy, daily to-do list. My needs are very specific: I need a task list application that wins in all of the following areas:
- Sub-task support
- Advanced repeating task management (copy, not move)
- Long term record retention
- Detailed notes storage
- A functional Android/iPhone application w/ sync (or decent web app)
A lot of the apps that I looked at had many of these features but not all of them. As a note, before you read on, I did end up paying for the pro version which, at $15 a year, is extremely worth it for the additional record retention time frame alone.
Sub-Task Support - I need to be able to define tasks within tasks for things that I do at home and at work. Checking off the requirements elicitation phase of a project and then moving on to the coding with the implementation and documentation check boxes still in view allows me to be realistic about what’s left on my plate.
Advanced Repeating Tasks - I don’t only want to be able to set up a task that repeats every day including weekends. What if it’s a work task? Toodledo gives me weekdays, bi-weekly, every nth day, allowing for quick entry of the most-used options and an advanced area to specify those tricky repeats. Also, the task creates a new iteration when it’s check off as complete. Many of the apps I’ve used in the past just move the task to the new day and uncheck it as if to say, “here’s your new task!” Yeah, but… “where’s my old one?!” I want to see that I did something on a specific day! Toodledo allows me to do so, even entering specific notes on one iteration of a repeating task.
Long Term Record Retention - We do year-end and monthly performance reviews at my workplace, making the option to look back at project notes and tasks that I’ve completed by date an invaluable necessity. The free version of Toodledo only supports record retention for 6 months from the date of the task’s creation. The pro (paid) version, allows me to extend that up to two years, though I currently have mine set at one.
Detailed Notes Storage - In my line of work, I get hit with a lot of questions and problems that I’ve already dealt with. The only problem is that I dealt with them just beyond the threshold of memory. Without notes to look back to, I would be double-counting a lot of time that I could have saved by doing a search for “Excel” or “Macro” within Toodledo and pulling up the notes. Having a project’s notes attached directly to the entry in my to-do list is also an excellent way of keeping everything together.
Functional Android/iPhone/Web App - Unfortunately, Toodledo is still working on their Android app but they have tons of other serviceable options for the mobile tasker. A native iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad app exists, great for the Apple enthusiast and another arrow in my quiver of reasons to get an iPad. They also have a great “slim” version of their task list page that works very well in the browser of my Droid X and is currently my primary mobile solution (no sync required, it’s online!). Lastly (do I even need to say it?) there are a myriad of third-party apps that provide sync options with Toodledo across all platforms, allowing you the freedom to decide on the app that’s perfect for you.
While your needs may not be as specific as mine, I’d still recommend Toodledo as a fantastic to-do/task list for the basic to advanced user. Check it out @ www.toodledo.com.
What’s your favorite task list application?