Making a To-Done list with technology
January 8, 2018 5:19 AM   Subscribe

I want to make a to-done list with some tech help (e.g. a daily email), because i never remember to update paper journals but am online all the time. IDoneThis costs money & is for teams; i'm just one person. What's a free way to do this?

Supposedly there is a free/hobby version of IDoneThis but that doesn't seem to exist anymore. I see references to daily emails via Google Sheets but the links are down. i don't mind if it's just an email thread that gets progressively longer. What's the best way to do this?
posted by divabat to Grab Bag (12 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Wunderlist is my goto. You can check things off as you complete them (it makes a satisfying ding) you can see your previous things you've done below your to-do items. You can make various lists for different projects, share lists with people. It has a phone app and a computer version. I would be lost without my Wunderlist.
posted by rabu at 6:17 AM on January 8, 2018 [2 favorites]

I like Google Keep. It is simple, the web app and the phone app seamlessly synchronize and it is free. As you branch out, it is easy to share and collaboratively edit lists with anyone that has a Google account. mrs. mmascolino I use this capability for our assorted shopping lists.
posted by mmascolino at 6:28 AM on January 8, 2018 [2 favorites]

I use Todoist as a traditional To-Do list, but it should be easily adaptable to this use as well. One thing I like about it is that it a lot of the metadata is set via keywords when you type in the task. So "buy milk on Tuesday #shopping" is automatically converted to a "buy milk" task with the Shopping label and you get a reminder for it on Tuesday.
posted by tobascodagama at 6:46 AM on January 8, 2018 [3 favorites]

Another vote for Google Keep. I like that it syncs my lists across my cell phone (via the app) and my dekstop (via You can set it to email you, although I haven't used that feature. I use it for both notes and lists and sparingly I've used the audio memo feature too.
posted by AppleTurnover at 7:04 AM on January 8, 2018

Habitica is a "gamified" to-do app that contains a couple of the elements listed in the article you linked to (gamification, of course, and rewards). It has a feature for daily, recurring tasks built in. I'm not sure if you can get that emailed to you — a lot of its gamey features do encourage daily check-ins and usage, though.
posted by fire, water, earth, air at 7:11 AM on January 8, 2018 [2 favorites]

ColorNote is a little notes + checklist app that I rather like, and my preferred checklist app before I found Google Keep. ColorNote is more simplified, and not tied to Google, which is either a plus or a minus, depending on how you look at it. Keep is more polished, but I also appreciate the basic nature of ColorNote. I'm not sure there's any automated email feature/element to ColorNote, though.

I also use EverNote, but it's too fancy for its own good, in that formatting can get messy if you cut and paste on a desktop version, changing font sizes on a mobile device even when you reformat the text to all the same font size, which for me is a bit maddening.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:25 AM on January 8, 2018 [2 favorites]

I use Workflowy. It's a simple outline-format list with the option of a daily email listing the day's new and completed items.
posted by a moisturizing whip at 9:15 AM on January 8, 2018

Seconding Habitica. There are articles on the Wiki about looping in IFTTT to make things more automatic. (It's beyond my current understanding, long story, but I'm morally certain anybody should be able to figure it out.)

The gamification is what really got me hooked. I thought I'd just want to collect gold and be done with it. But I just about threw myself a party a couple days ago for hatching all the Generation 1 pets, achieving Beast Master status.
posted by The Almighty Mommy Goddess at 10:26 AM on January 8, 2018

I'll third IFTTT. It links in with several online Todo services, including Todoist. You can have it log every item to a new Google Sheet, or to a text file somewhere, or whatever-have-you.
posted by SansPoint at 1:03 PM on January 8, 2018

I’m not looking for a to-do list that I can mark things off, so things like Habitica or Wunderlist are overkill. I literally just want a daily log of “here’s what I accomplished today”, with an easy way of being reminded to write the thing every night without too many steps.
posted by divabat at 2:13 PM on January 8, 2018

Might something like the Day One journal work for you? You can set it to send you a reminder email every day.
posted by merejane at 2:36 PM on January 8, 2018 [2 favorites]

IDoneThis does seem to still allow you to have a free account for personal use only. I signed up but didn't enter a credit card, a few days later I got an email saying that my free trial was up and my team account would be deactivated but I could still use my personal log.

Otherwise, as others have suggested you could use IFTTT with something like Day One to make your own.
posted by knitswithcathair at 2:43 PM on January 10, 2018

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