Best Website/App for Keeping Track of Lists?
January 15, 2014 8:20 AM   Subscribe

Is there a good and simple combination website and phone app for all the lists I want to keep?

Basically I'm looking for something like Google lists only I don't think that exists really.

I make tons of lists, both long and short-term (stuff to buy, ideas for my D&D campaign, birthday prezzies to get, books to read, books I HAVE read, all sorts of things). Right now I usually just save them as email drafts but I hate doing that and would really like a dedicated list system. I don't really want to use Google docs for this; it's just not my favorite and I have too many on there anyway for it to work properly.

Things I Would Like:
  • As simple and elegant as possible -- I don't want clutter or pointless features
  • A website where I can type things in on my computer that syncs to an app that I can use easily on my phone
  • I'd be happy to have a way to categorize the lists (e.g. long term stuff, short term stuff, whatever) but this isn't necessary
  • If I could somehow integrate it with my Google calendar that would be awesome but I respect that this might be difficult
There's a question like this from 2004 but I'm hoping technology has advanced in the field since then. Thanks so much for your suggestions!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl to Computers & Internet (16 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Google Keep does lists very well, and syncs between website and app. It has reminders too, and I'd assume those integrate with Google Calendar.
posted by pipeski at 8:24 AM on January 15, 2014

Yeah, Google Keep does most of what you want, but it does not integrate with Google calendar.

(Because of that, I've recently switched from Keep -- which really is lovely and simple -- to and Cal, which overlays Google Calendar. Jury is still out.)
posted by notyou at 8:34 AM on January 15, 2014

(Also note that is a smartphone app first, with a Chrome extension. It's not a web service.)
posted by notyou at 8:35 AM on January 15, 2014

What kind of phone do you have? Some apps are limited to iOS or Android only.

1. Evernote would be a good thing to try. They have a web interface, desktop app and mobile apps (iOS, Droid and Windows).
2. If you have OneNote on your computer (part of Microsoft Office), you can access your Notebooks via SkyDrive on your phone or another computer.

Both of these will have lots of other features, but you can ignore them and just use the bullets or checkboxes. You categorize lists in both as well.
posted by soelo at 8:42 AM on January 15, 2014

OK, last comment: old standby Remember the Milk probably has you covered, including Google Calendar integration (via a GCal gadget).
posted by notyou at 8:43 AM on January 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

Thanks for the suggestions so far -- I've got an Android phone.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:46 AM on January 15, 2014

WorkFlowy is wonderful! I don't think that it will sync with Google calendar, but it meets all of your other requirements!
posted by HoraceH at 8:48 AM on January 15, 2014 [2 favorites]

I've recently started playing around with WorkFlowly and I'll second checking it out if you like using outliners.
posted by mister e at 8:55 AM on January 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

+1 for Workflowy. I haven't tried it on a smartphone but on a tablet (i.e. iPad), it's pretty good. Also, they've recently released an offline/desktop version that works on top of Chrome.
posted by cowlick at 9:34 AM on January 15, 2014

Oh, my beloved Wunderlist. It does in-app reminders (including customizable recurring ones), but not other calendars as far as I can tell (I use the free version, I don't see anything about it on the Pro version).

I especially like that you can share lists if you want. My husband and I share several different shopping lists, and a sort of side to-do list of "if you get a chance before I do..." kind of things.

Works on iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, and web. It's probably just barely second to Evernote in my hierarchy of personal productivity apps.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:18 AM on January 15, 2014

I used to use Remember the Milk but left for Wunderlist. The deal breaker for me was not being able to sort effectively with RTM. Wunderlist also has a nicer interfacer, IMHO. Both have good mobile support.

I'm an avid user of Google Keep, but it doesn't have list-y things like recurring tasks, sorting, grouping, etc. Google Tasks are not a first-class Google citizen, but work for basic things and integrate with the calendar. The problem there is they don't completely integrate with the calendar (only the "default" list will display) and there isn't a Google sponsored mobile app. They are also too tightly coupled with mail and calendar, so if you're just working on tasks/lists, you don't have a clean, simple, task oriented interface. I'm quite surprised (and annoyed) that Google hasn't really taken the opportunity to add a killer list/task application to their suite.
posted by boba at 12:00 PM on January 15, 2014

I like Trello (website, Android app).
posted by Lexica at 4:23 PM on January 15, 2014

Seconding Trello, it's interface is clean, yet it has some advanced features (some need to be enabled) like assigning to users, colour coding, scheduled time etc.
posted by Gomez_in_the_South at 4:53 PM on January 15, 2014

I use todoist to keep track of which books I want to read and which movies I want to see. They have a good deal of functionality, like scheduling, grouping, priorities, etc, but their UI remains clean enough for the simple to-do lists that I do use them for.

They have an Android app, and the lists are accessible through the website, but I find I rely most heavily on their browser extension (ex. I'll see a book recommendation on a website and I can add a to-do without switching tabs/leaving the page).

It looks like they integrate with gmail and google calendar as well, but since I don't use my lists that way, I can't comment on how easy it is to use.
posted by comradechu at 9:24 PM on January 15, 2014

Thanks to a recommendation on this thread, I have been very happy with Google tasks, using the full page option while at my computer. I use the "Tasks" app (also recommended on the same thread) to interface with my Android phone (there is also a free version).
posted by easilyamused at 10:57 PM on January 15, 2014

Wow, Workflowy looks impressive. I think it's just replaced two of my desktop programs.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 2:05 PM on January 16, 2014

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