PFRs for TaskMator

I feel like sharing some public feedback requests for TaskMator 3.0. ūüėĀ

In TaskMator, turning on the Show Badge Number¬†option will display the number of tasks that are not done within¬†the open‚ÄĒor most recently opened‚ÄĒdocument.

Since saved searches work across the app1, I’d love an additional option in Settings ‚Üí Advanced, right below the Show Badge Number option.

(1) Apply saved search for badge number

At its current iteration, it’s an unrealistic indicator of my workload for the day to display a super high number (like 299).

Coming from Things, here are their Badge Count settings:

  • None
  • Due Items
  • Due + Today
  • Due + Today + Inbox

In TaskMator, adding the option to select a saved search for your app badge means you have the power to make a more complex saved search!

With the help of a Mac, the current alternative that is “easier” would be to:

  • Duplicate the existing TaskPaper file.
  • Run your desired saved search manually in TaskPaper for each document.
  • Expand everything, copy to clipboard, Go to Home (Shift-CMD-H), Select All (CMD-A), and Paste (CMD-V)
  • Rename the document.
  • On your iOS device, open TaskMator to refresh everything.

Gosh.

Now that I describe that workflow, it sounds ridiculous. I can press a few keyboard shortcuts in rapid, furious succession. After I learn the groove, it’s not a big deal to me.

Short of trying to configure¬†a script to generate/update a daily file, which you’d then sync with your Dropbox folder, this is okay with me.

(2) In the main documents folder, add a right-to-left swipe option to designate a file for the app badge.

This would save time going to Settings ‚Üí Advanced.

(3) Support latest date-based queries.

I tried some searches in TaskMator that work in TaskPaper 3. No joy. It definitely isn’t the end of the world, so I moved on.

This one is lowest on this list because I have no idea how long the other two requests will take, and I really should keep this simple.

Should. ūüėČ


  1. That is, not document-specific. 
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TaskPaper and my iPhone

I wrote a comment in a previous post (Considering TaskPaper 3)¬†to describe how I could¬†add information to my TaskPaper files¬†with Siri using Reminders and Drafts. Check that out. Now,¬†I’ll briefly¬†explain how I’ve worked with my TaskPaper files¬†on my iPhone so far.

My decision to get¬†TaskMator was based on¬†Gabe Weatherhead’s reviews on Macdrifter. I recommend reading them first. ūüôā

This morning, I also listened to¬†Episode 026 ‚ÄĒ Old Stock Ale and Task Management from¬†Nerds on Draft (an episode from a year ago), which includes some discussion about TaskPaper and TaskMator. (See show notes.)

Anyway. I haven’t¬†used the alarm feature yet. Filtering¬†by project or tag works well. Same with search from the home screen, which seems fast.¬†I’m also fiddling¬†with saved searches:


Due
(@due or @today or @flag) and not @done

Not @done
not (type = note or @done)

Quick tasks <= 15m
@time <= 15 and not (type = note or @done)


At the moment, I omit the notes in some saved searches because I use often include notes. (In the TaskPaper app, I collapse these quickly. All from my keyboard, loving it.) With the above syntax, that¬†means done tasks aren’t displayed even though¬†the notes under those tasks are technically not marked as done.

Anyway, the goal is to narrow the scope of my tasks. I might create two dupes that include notes for more detail.

For adding stuff to my TaskPaper files, I have several actions in Drafts that prepends the chosen draft.

  • TP (Personal)
  • TP (Personal, done)
  • TP (Personal, added)

For the second and third, those are for instances where I only have a single-line draft.1

When ready to clear my “inbox” at the top of the file, and on my iPhone, I can tap each task, and move it to my desired “project”.2 Or, using two fingers‚ÄĒtap and hold the bottom menubar, then proceed¬†tapping the other¬†tasks you’d like to manage‚ÄĒI can add the relevant tags, then move it to the correct project.

I’m not certain if the purpose of Taskmator is to use a one or two huge TaskPaper files. If you enable the badge number, and the most recent file you opened had over 250 tasks, your mind would go numb. I’d like the ability to designate a project for each TaskPaper file, but I imagine using¬†a different setting for separate files¬†would be tough to implement.

Even¬†though I’ve gotten comfortable with Things,¬†I’m pleased with TaskMator!

 


  1. ¬†See also: My Habit of Noting Timestamps 
  2. Remember:¬†I use “projects”‚ÄĒas labeled with TaskPaper files and apps‚ÄĒas “Areas” to combine¬†a broad¬†group of related¬†items. 

Hello, Day One 2!

I got¬†the latest version of Day One¬†for my Mac and iPhone, taking advantage of the 50% off pricing.1¬†Jake Underwood wrote a solid review at MacStories. I’m determined to get into a habit of writing regularly for myself.

Here are my notes during the migration from Day One Classic:

Next, I’ll start with¬†a few reminders throughout each¬†day on my phone. I haven’t before, but I’d like to see how I feel after adding that small habit. To make it quick, I can use my Logitech Bluetooth Easy-Switch K811 Keyboard¬†and Amy’s Glif¬†(affiliate links)¬†when¬†I’m at my desk.

(I should review the Day One Uses page.)

Using this fine app, I look forward to being mindful of my thoughts, feelings, and actions on a regular basis.


Another cool tidbit: dayoneapp.com uses WordPress and Jetpack! ‚≠ź


  1. I think today¬†is the last day of the sale pricing for the iOS app. However, from the Day One listing¬†in the Mac App Store, “Sale extended until Feb 17th to assist our users that have no yet heard about the new app, and those having trouble purchasing due to errors in the Mac App Store.” 

Lyft: My first three experiences

A¬†few colleagues used Lyft from their phones while I was in San Francisco for UserConf in November 2014. However, I won’t count that¬†as my first experience because I didn’t use it on my¬†iPhone.

I worked a couple of shifts at the WordPress booth (by WordPress.com)1 at NAMM 2016 in Anaheim on Thursday and Friday, January 21st and 22nd.

A day or two earlier, I installed Lyft.

Along¬†with my pal, Ryan Cowles, we took public transportation from Pasadena to Anaheim early Thursday morning.2 After arriving at¬†ARTIC (Anaheim), we went to the pickup area, and¬†I requested a Lyft driver. 3 minutes ‚ÄĒ cool!

The time estimate was accurate, and I also received a text messsage right when we saw the car. Nice. Davey was friendly, and the drive was smooth.

I love everything about the¬†ride history shown in the Lyft app. Davey¬†drove us from ARTIC to Anaheim Marriott Suites in eleven minutes. ūüôā

Next,¬†I decided to test Lyft’s¬†Lost & Found procedure.

Not.

As we tried to find the place to get our exhibitor badges, it took me about five minutes to realize that I forgot my DSLR camera in his car.3

Doing my best to stay calm, I opened the Lyft app, went to Ride History, and spotted “Find lost item” at the bottom. I¬†described my¬†lost item, entered my Google Voice number, and waited.

Eight minutes after Hideto dropped us off, he returned my call, and said he could meet me where we were earlier. Happy ending! He was super cool about it, too.

With my camera in hands, I was like:

On Saturday morning, the third driver (Joshua) picked me up at Marriott Anaheim Suites for part of my journey back to Pasadena. Really nice person, incredibly gregarious (despite being sleep deprived), and the drive was smooth.

I thoroughly enjoyed my three Lyft experiences. Highly recommended!


  1. I’ll save that for a separate post. 
  2. Ryan took a couple of cool photos: Metrolink, and Track 1 to Los Angeles
  3. Canon EOS 40D + Sigma 30mm f/1.4. 

Why We Encrypt

Great post from Bruce Schneier from June 2015:

Encryption should be enabled for everything by default, not a feature you turn on only if you’re doing something you consider worth protecting.

This is important. If we only use encryption when we’re working with important data, then encryption signals that data’s importance. If only dissidents use encryption in a country, that country’s authorities have an easy way of identifying them. But if everyone uses it all of the time, encryption ceases to be a signal. No one can distinguish simple chatting from deeply private conversation. The government can’t tell the dissidents from the rest of the population. Every time you use encryption, you’re protecting someone who needs to use it to stay alive.

Private/group messaging and calling with iOS or Android? Signal is fantastic. For email, James Huff uses ProtonMail.

Noizio

Noizio is a¬†slick, flexible, and free(!) app that plays ambient sounds. I just installed it on my Mac and iPhone to use¬†when listening to music isn’t proper¬†for the task at hand.1

The current version offers fifteen ambient sounds. I dig the simplicity and ability to mix the various sounds at different volumes.¬†Saving different “Mixtures” will be fun to try.

If you’re a fan of¬†Coffitivity, Noizio is worth checking out. ūüôā

Just turn on the sound and allow yourself to become engulfed in the tranquil sounds of nature. Whether you wish to feel as if you’re sitting near a fireplace under a cozy blanket, or that you’re meditating on a desolate sea shore as gusts of wind ruffle your hair, Noizio will be there to set the mood. With this ambient sound equalizer, not only will you be able to relax, but you will also increase your productivity, as you’re trying to concentrate on your work!


  1. ¬†Playing in the background¬†while I write this post: Campfire, Winter Wind, and Deep Space.