Tag Archives: ipad task app

Evernote As My iPad Task Manager


I use Evernote quite a lot for my own notes, but I also use it at work. I’ve got two notebooks for each of the positions I’ve held at work, and I’ve got a few tags associated with notes depending on which coworkers I need to consult for a given project. However, as of three weeks ago, I’ve taken it one step further: I’m trying to use Evernote as my main task manager as well.

That means all of the work tasks and personal items on my to-do lists also reside in Evernote, alongside my notes about bags and cool iPad apps. It’s been a pretty big change, and Evernote’s UI isn’t exactly fun or efficient for task management, but it works and provides a very unique advantage.

First up, the basics. You don’t create Evernote reminders like you do in other task management apps, but rather reminders are attached to existing notes. Evernote notes consist of a plain text title and a main body (which can contain rich text, links, and files). Turning a note into a reminder gives you the option to add a notification at a given time, and it also keeps the note in a special reminders section of the Evernote app.

Simple task lists

Each note in Evernote is assigned to a specific notebook, which ends up acting like the category for that set of notes. So if I set up a “groceries” notebook and fill it with notes that had titles like “buy milk” or “buy eggs”, that could work as a basic to-do list.

Sub tasks

Evernote also supports sub-tasks, in a manner of speaking. Each note can support a set of checkboxes, so you can break down larger tasks into smaller chunks. For example, making bacon pancakes is a more complicated endeavour than simply buying eggs, so it can help to create a set of sub-tasks that I can cross off.

These sub-tasks are really helpful for tracking my progress through more involved projects. The only weakness of this system is that sub-tasks cannot be assigned any notifications — you can only set a single notification for any given Evernote note.

Context right beside your tasks

The main reason I decided to try Evernote out as a task manager is its ability to show a lot of context for a given task. When I have to “finish my expense report” it’s really helpful to be able to keep all of my PDF receipts and the expense report Excel sheet right inside of that note. That way, once the notification pops up to remind me, all I have to do is tap on the note, and all the files I need are gathered in one place for me to get right to work.

I was finding a disconnect while using other task managers because, although they would remind me and help me triage tasks, it was too easy to lose my place as I juggled all of the open windows on my work PC. It was also hard to find a task manager other than Evernote that was natively cross platform across the Mac, PC, and iOS.

Evernote isn’t the most fun program to use for task management. It lacks satisfying animations or sound effects, and it doesn’t have the clever natural language parsing of Due or Fantastical, but it’s hands-down the most efficient task management system I’ve used at work.

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Still Waiting Patiently For 2Do III for iPad

2Do App Icon

I’ve been waiting for the release of 2Do III ever since the release of iOS 7 last Fall, and I’m trying to keep from calling the third version of the app “3Do” (I blame 2Fast2Furious and its ilk for that). 2Do was one of my all-time favourite task management apps on iOS, and even though I don’t use the current version of the app, I can’t help but check the developer blog every now and then to check on the app’s status.

As it turns out, 2Do III is still in active development — no surprise there — but there was a very tasty teaser that I had missed in early June. The post teases the iPhone rewrite, but because the app is a universal one, I’m sure the iPad changes can’t be very far behind.

Info Zooming means extra details can stay hidden until you need them, and 2Do seems to have far fewer “save” and “cancel” buttons than before. It looks like changes to task fields — such as the tags, categories, and due dates — are saved instantly, so you can quickly jump from one field to the next without extra taps. That’s a little detail that saves a lot of time in the long run.

What’s a little shocking is that the 3.0 update — if released before the apocalypse — is coming out for free to all current owners of the app. I joke about the long development time, but if it took the devs this long to really come up with this many great features, I’d be more than happy to pay them another $10 to check their 3.0 app out.

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Due 1.10 for iPad Brings A Gorgeous iOS 7 Visual Refresh

Due 1.10 for ipad

There are many task managers out there, but there’s only one Due app. This is the app that I rely upon on a daily basis to pester me, incessantly, until I get a particular task done. When one of my alerts goes off, Due will bother me every single minute — with a banner alert, vibration, and audible ring — until I load the app up to delay or complete a task. If this sounds annoying, that’s because it is! But that’s exactly what I love this app for.

Due was always a good-looking app, but the lack of any major updates has made its iOS 6-era interface stick out on iOS 7. Thankfully, yesterday’s update to v1.10 changed that with a full re-skin of the entire app. Due now mimics the cleaner overall appearance of iOS 7, and its UI has become much easier to read and comprehend. The buttons for delaying a task by 10 minutes, 60 minutes, or 24 hours, are now much more legible than before, and the homescreen icon has been flattened appropriately. I’d say the app simply feels more crisp, sharp, and precise, and that’s totally approprioate to how Due functions in the day-to-day.

Now, keep in mind that this is mainly a fresh coat of paint to Due. A major overhaul, V2.0, is apparently still in the works. The @Dueapp Twitter account has confirmed that background syncing is on track for the next release, but I’m also keeping my fingers crossed for possible Reminders integration. However, even if none of that comes to fruition, I’m already very happy to have an iOS 7 refresh for Due. It’s still one of the absolute best reminder apps out there, and its combination of natural language parsing and rapidly repeating alerts make it one of my must-have iOS apps. It’s a steal for $4.99, and it’s incredible that the whole package works on both iPhone and iPad.

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