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Tips & Tricks Tuesday: Keeping work and home life separate with Smart Lists

Tuesday, February 26, 2013 by Andrew Conkling

One of the benefits of keeping lists of tasks is that everything can be in one place. However, it can get a bit tricky to keep things separated. This week breadbean shares a handy tip: using the power of Smart Lists, you can easily keep your work and home tasks so you can focus on what you can do in each place.

I use RTM for home and work, keeping things separate with Inbox, B and C lists for home and Work A, B and C lists. On my smartphone I use two widgets, one as 'due today' and the other as 'work due today'.

The Smart List syntax for 'due today' is:

NOT list:WorkAList and NOT list:WorkBList and NOT list:WorkCList status:incomplete and due:today or dueBefore:today

The syntax for 'work due today' is:

list:WorkAList status:incomplete and due:today or dueBefore:today NOT list:Inbox

I also have a list for 'weekly orders' for products I need to purchase repeatedly for work, I just tag them 'orders' with a repeating schedule and put them in the WorkAList. BAM, done! This might look confusing, but it actually simplifies my life so much!

Thanks for sharing this tip, breadbean! You're our Tips & Tricks Tuesday winner this week.

Do you have a suggestion for our weekly Tips & Tricks post? Got an interesting set-up or idea? Head over to the Tips & Tricks forum, add a new topic, and let us know how you use Remember The Milk. Each week we'll give away a 1 year Pro account to the user whose idea inspires the Tips & Tricks Tuesday blog post for that week.

Posted in: Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks Tuesday: Goin' home

Tuesday, February 19, 2013 by Andrew Conkling

If you live far from home, you can relate to needing to be very intentional about what special things you do when you make a trip there. This week bordaigorl describes how they organize these things before, during, and after a trip home.

Australia list

I live far from home for long periods. From time to time something like "next time I go back home I'll do this" pops in my mind… Sometimes it's just "next time I'll get that cheese I cannot find here and I'll bring it back" or "I must remember to bring this book from here". Some other it's more "I must visit this guy" or "send a postcard to that person".

So, in order to actually remember to do all this stuff, I set up a list named after my home country where I put all the things that randomly pop in my mind and that concern my next trip back home.

I use mainly two tags in that list: fromhere, athome and fromhome so that I can filter the fromhere ones when I pack to go home, the athome ones when I am there and the fromhome ones when I am leaving again.

I prefer a separate list instead of a location because I use locations for places I actually visit frequently: using a very far location I seldom go to clutters my "general purpose" list with tasks with no priority and no known due time and zooms out the map for no reason.

Thanks for sharing this tip, bordaigorl! You're our Tips & Tricks Tuesday winner this week.

Do you have a suggestion for our weekly Tips & Tricks post? Got an interesting set-up or idea? Head over to the Tips & Tricks forum, add a new topic, and let us know how you use Remember The Milk. Each week we'll give away a 1 year Pro account to the user whose idea inspires the Tips & Tricks Tuesday blog post for that week.

Posted in: Tips & Tricks

Featured integration: QuickFox Notes

Friday, February 15, 2013 by Brendan Ganley

Inspiration often strikes in a flash. Sometimes jotting down a quick note can be the difference between an idea that turns into something productive and an idea that's forgotten. (Bob once told me he wrote 35 additional verses for Bananaphone but forgot to write them down.) If you're an unrelenting note-taker and you live your life inside Firefox, the QuickFox Notes extension from InBasic was made just for you. The extension allows you to easily write and organize notes from within your browser and, using the Remember The Milk add-on script, integrate with your task list. The developer has provided videos demonstrating the features of the extension and how to install add-on scripts.

QuickFox screenshot

To add a new task from within QuickFox Notes, simply click on the Remember The Milk icon. Tasks can be added quickly using Smart Add syntax, and the shortcuts are displayed for easy reference. In addition, any note text that you've selected will automatically be added as a note to the new task.

You can also display your tasks inside the extension by clicking to the right of the Remember The Milk icon and using the “Fetch Tasks” command. Click on a task to view its details in the web app.

Looking for more tools to help you interact with Remember The Milk? Take a look at our Apps page to find something that fits in with your workflow.

Posted in: Featured Apps

Surprising your significant other on Valentine's Day… with tasks!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013 by Emily Boyd

Yes, tasks can be romantic! Here's how one member of our team (thanks for sharing this, Grant! :) plans to surprise his girlfriend on Valentine's Day:

Bob T. Monkey and a special friend

Are you looking for something romantic to do for your significant other for this upcoming day of love? My girlfriend also has Remember The Milk, and we have a shared list for housework.

Unfortunately, I'll have to work a bit late on Valentine's Day, but I asked myself how I could be romantic even away from home. And the answer I thought of was… Remember The Milk and a miniature chocolate-treasure hunt!

Here is how I will go about doing it tomorrow:

  1. Make sure you and your Valentine's Day partner have a shared list.
  2. The night before Valentine's Day, hide pieces of chocolate, love notes, and diamond rings around the house (Okay, maybe not the rings.. unless you're super rich). Make sure to jot down where they are so you don't forget later!
  3. When you are at work and she is at home, add one task at a time that hints at the location of your hidden treasure. For example, "Check between the couch cushions… complete this task and I will add a new one."
  4. Once he or she completes that task, (i.e., found the chocolate), add another task.
  5. Feel free to make the hints as easy or difficult as you choose!

Enjoy your Valentine's Day, everyone!

Posted in: Behind the Scenes

Tips & Tricks Tuesday: Flash cards with Remember The Milk

Tuesday, February 12, 2013 by Andrew Conkling

People use Remember The Milk to keep track of all sorts of things, but this week odelaney shares a tip for a unique method to remember all sorts of specific details: flash cards! odelaney even has a video demonstration too, included below. (Is this the first tip with a corresponding video? :)

I've recently started studying for Cisco's CCIE qualification and was wondering how best to ensure I'm remembering as much as possible. Flash cards are always a memory good tool, and I had a look at some dedicated flash card apps, as well as Evernote. But I'd prefer to keep things centralised with RTM, which I use for all other tasks and reference notes. The RTM iPhone app is actually pretty well suited to flash cards, using the notes function and swiping to reveal an answer.

I setup a Smart List called flash cards using "tagContains:fc-".

Then added a task per study topic, each with a tag representing the study area, e.g. a task called BGP fundamentals with a tag fc-routing.

Then, in each task I'll be creating multiple notes, one note = one flash card.

A single note has a title, a question and an answer. I've put >10 lines between the question and answer, so that in the iPhone app, the answer is not visible until I swipe to reveal it. Multiple blank lines don't seem to work in RTM notes, so I've used a ↓ per line.

That's pretty much it. Creating the cards by hand is a good process in itself in terms of memorising things.

A good way to create multiple flash cards at once is using rtm's email import function. Then you can add a load of notes into the email body.

Thanks for sharing this tip, odelaney! You're our Tips & Tricks Tuesday winner this week.

Do you have a suggestion for our weekly Tips & Tricks post? Got an interesting set-up or idea? Head over to the Tips & Tricks forum, add a new topic, and let us know how you use Remember The Milk. Each week we'll give away a 1 year Pro account to the user whose idea inspires the Tips & Tricks Tuesday blog post for that week.

Posted in: Tips & Tricks

Tips & Tricks Tuesday: Using tags to organize groups of tasks

Tuesday, February 5, 2013 by Andrew Conkling

Tags are one of our favorite features for organizing tasks. This week's tip, shared by reconfiguring, shows a few ways of using tags very effectively to organize groups of tasks — for specific meetings, but also as a means of categorizing tasks more generally too.

As I have to manage attendance and input to a lot of project meetings, I have developed an RTM system of tags that helps me to achieve this. To illustrate, lets consider 3 Projects called Red, Green and Blue. Each of these projects has various supporting meetings such as Project Reviews, Risk Meetings and Design Meetings. Now when I come across an issue that I need to raise in one of these meetings I just tag it with a “Mtg_ProjectName_MtgName” tag such as mtg_red_risk. Now I can use the tag to quickly find items for that meeting either in advance, or during the meeting.

Better still, by using the tagContains: search operator, I can also set up Smart Lists to quickly show me all items for a given set of meetings, e.g. tagContains:"mtg_blue_" to allow me to prep for meetings. By also setting due dates to the date of the meeting I can produce a really powerful set of views that allow me to prepare much better in advance.

Finally, I also have a mtg_action tag that I can apply to tasks that fall out of actions given to me in meetings which again allows to be quickly sort and search and ensure I have done what I need to do. Hope this is of interest.

Thanks for sharing this tip, reconfiguring! You're our Tips & Tricks Tuesday winner this week.

Do you have a suggestion for our weekly Tips & Tricks post? Got an interesting set-up or idea? Head over to the Tips & Tricks forum, add a new topic, and let us know how you use Remember The Milk. Each week we'll give away a 1 year Pro account to the user whose idea inspires the Tips & Tricks Tuesday blog post for that week.

Posted in: Tips & Tricks

Command line task management with rumember and Milkmaid

Friday, February 1, 2013 by Brendan Ganley

Are you a command line ninja who's looking for a way to manage your tasks without leaving the terminal? These two apps may be just what you're looking for: rumember from Tim Pope and Milkmaid from Marius Grigoriu. Both are open source Ruby apps focused on fast and easy command line task management.

Once you've installed rumember, adding a task is as simple as:

ru Pick up milk ^tomorrow

It doesn't get much easier than that! You can specify the task's properties using Smart Add shortcuts, too. Adding tasks quickly is the sole purpose of rumember, so you won't be able to display or edit existing tasks.

If you want a bit more flexibility to manipulate your tasks, give Milkmaid a try. Once it's installed, you can list your tasks with the following command:

milkmaid task

Color-coding and special formatting will be applied to tasks which are marked with a priority level, are due today or are overdue. Also, a unique ID number will be assigned to each listed task which allows you to reference them when performing other actions such as complete or postpone.

Milkmaid screenshot

One of the great things about command line applications is the way you can often piece them together to customize your workflow. As an example, this article shows how to use rumember with Alfred to quickly add tasks from your Mac desktop with keyboard shortcuts. Good thinking!

Interested in making your own application that connects to Remember The Milk? Look over our API and get coding!

Posted in: Featured Apps