Uncategorized - 10 November 2010
Author: Jim Szymanski

 

BountyHunter2

Ok, so I have spent the past two days playing with my new Surround and learning everything I can about it. Really not too much to figure out but I like to immerse myself in new things. The beauty of WP is that there is really very little you can do or change to personalize the phone. Microsoft has already done most of the heavy lifting. Downloaded about 40 apps/games so far and aside from a couple app solutions I am still looking into I am just about ready to power down my Tilt2 for the last time.

The one thing that is holding me back is the lack of a good Task/ToDo app for my phone. Microsoft chose to skip over this important functionality for reasons I will never know, even though Windows Live does have something called ToDo’s. I have tried the 5 or 6 Task apps available on the Marketplace, and am currently trialing one and testing another, but they all do about the same thing and lack critical functionality. As I am already using a 3rd party app with a live tile (Weatherbug) and saw at least one other app that included alerts/alarms, I am hoping that my request for a good Task/ToDo app can be fulfilled.

What I am looking for on a Task/ToDo app:

  • Task subject – (already implemented)
  • Due Date – (already implement nicely)
  • Due Time – (optional, but already implemented)
  • Description – (already implemented)
  • Category – (optional, but already implemented)
  • Priority, like 1,2 3 – (optional)
  • Sorting by Due Date / Priority – (required)
  • Past Due Change Status (to red) – (required)
  • Completed Toggle – (already implemented)
  • Reminder Alert – Day/Time (required – not yet implemented)
  • Recurrence Function – (required – not yet implemented)
  • Live Tile w/ # Due & # Past Due (in red), like Tasks 2 / 1 – (required – not yet implemented)
  • Any other bells or whistles
  • No syncing w/ Outlook / Windows Live required, but that would be really slick

My current workaround is to set an alarm to remind me to check the Task app at a certain time each day. I can get by without recurrence by resetting the task once completed. Sloppy but it works. I can sometimes go several days without needing to check Tasks, so a forced check is like crying wolf. It gets old fast. I sometimes set tasks a month or two out and can’t possibly remember them all. I don’t want to clutter up my calendar with tasks, and what happens when I don’t complete them on the scheduled appointment date (vanishing task).

So, I have a crisp $50 US for the first Task/ToDo app that meets the above required specifications. And if it looks/works really well, expect a bonus. Anyone want to add to the bounty or maybe there is a developer out there with some free time. I am going to double post this thread in our Forums (Windows Phone /Software) to give the offer as much exposure as possible. Happy hunting.

 

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(18) Readers Comments

  1. “The beauty of WP is that there is really very little you can do or change to personalize the phone.”
    Come on Jim that’s over half the fun.

  2. Agreed. But for the first time in a long time I am not all that worried about dropping my phone in the lake or leaving it on the bumper of my car, Aside from figuring out a few things regarding contacts/calendar, etc, (for importing, not on the phone) setup was done in under an hour and I don’t think I have made more than 6 or 7 settings changes to all the built-in stuff and 3rd parts apps combined. Now that’s refreshing. Even though tweaking is sort of a form of play, now I can just play without thinking about it.

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  5. I am using One-Note for my To do’s. There is actually a task type of entry that you can check off as complete. What I like about it is the fact it will synch to skydrive and allow the ability to edit online. You can also open the notes from the web via the full client. I believe the last piece of your desired solution would involve integration with Outlook/Calendar? One Note has promise if it will integrate with the OS a little more and provide the alerts and live tile as you outlines.

  6. I have used One Note ToDo’s as part of a project but it’s really not suited for a daily Task list on the phone, with expiring due dates, recurrence, etc. All Microsoft would have needed to do was integrate the Windows Live ToDo’s into WP7 and maybe update it to include recurrence (as the Windows live calender already has). The double-wide calendar tile has plenty of room for some ToDo information. Guess they didn’t think it was useful info. Or, they didn’t have a Todo list and forgot to add it to the OS. Maybe next year.

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  8. ran into the same problem when i first got an iPhone back in the day. Solved it with ToodleDo and the iPhone companion app. working on a ToodleDo app for WP7 right now. there is a ToodleDo/Outlook connector already out there. ToodleDo meets all of your posted requirements. Once i’m finished you’ll have Outlook tasks, synced to the cloud, available on a WP7 app. check it out and let me know what you think. should be ready for beta testing soon. i find ToodleDo to be much better than remember the milk. I tried the WP7 app for RTM, but it’s too slow and buggy.

  9. Thanks for posting. I look forward to giving ToodleDo a spin. Actually I have not experienced any bugginess with the RTM WP7 app. Everything is always where it should be and nothing has gotten lost or misplaced. And didn’t understand Smart And at first, but now I am loving it. But from an Outlook perspective it is a little different. And the elusive Live Tile with Current & PastDues is critical for me. I know this requires push notification but have been assured they are working on it. I check Marketplace for new releases almost daily so I will keep an eye out.

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  12. If you’re still looking for a good to-do app on Windows Phone, check out lil todo: http://www.ussherpress.com/liltodo/ It’s got most of the features you list below with plans for more.

  13. Lil ToDo looks interesting. But among other things, the three most important to me; sync with the cloud, recurring tasks and a LiveTile.

  14. I’m going to add recurring tasks in a later release, but live tiles and sync to cloud would be trickier. I’m hoping MS improves how live tiles and notifications are handled because right now you have to run your own cloud service to handle them. (This is likely why you don’t see too many apps that use it.) I don’t have plans to run any cloud services at this point since I want to keep this free.

    I’m thinking of creating a desktop app later so you can sync from phone to desktop and do more edits there.

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  16. If anyone creates a task tool for WP7 that support ProductEEV I would toss in some money.