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Frustrated with recurring tasks and reminders

V

I love so many things about Todoist, but the free entry box for recurrence drives me nuts. Entering them in the Priorities to 2Do app are so much easier. Let me click on the day I want the task to start, then I can choose exactly how I want the repeat to work and if I want it to repeat from completion date or on a certain date no matter what. (I hate guessing what language to use that the program will understand, I always forget and have to look back at the help page. I know it sounds cool to use real language to put in the box, but in reality it raises my blood pressure, seems unnecessarily complicated).

Here is a simple example. I went to put in a reminder for the kids to take out the trash. Every other week the recycle goes out also. So in my old app, I had a task that would start this week and repeat every two weeks, and then I had a separate task that would start next week and repeat every two weeks. When I tried that tonight with Todoist, I type in every second Monday, but they both turn out the same because I don't know how to get one to start today and the other one to start next week.

Also with the recurrent tasks, is there a way to set the recurrence from completion? For instance, if we set certain household tasks such as giving the dog their medications every month and we are late in getting it done, I don't want the task to come up until it has been a month since it was last given.

If I can't get simple things like that to work, it makes me nervous to switch over all my work stuff.

All responses

Brendon Wadey staff
Replied on Oct 08, 2013 - 00:55

Hi Valerie,

We are sorry you feel this way. We do try to keep things as simple and intuitive as possible.

You can create a task as "every 2 weeks starting October 10" and that would give you what you want. If you click on the date box, then Recurring Tasks & More you can learn about the options available.

As for recurring overdue tasks, this is not possible. That task would show as overdue until complete, and then the next occurrence would happen.

Thanks,
Brendon.

David Trey staff
Replied on Oct 08, 2013 - 11:10

Hello Valerie,

Also, regarding setting recurrence from the task completion - this is also possible. To do so, instead of "every 14 days", use the date "after 14 days" and such task will repeat 14 days after the completion.


Best regards,
David

J
Jay premium
Replied on Oct 29, 2013 - 16:14

I too am frustrated with this. In addition to getting the syntax right, the entry box is two small to see the entire phrase on the longer ones when trying to get it right.

"every 2 weeks starting October 30"
I've been trying to use this and it doesn't work. Keeps telling me Invalid Date.

J
Jay premium
Replied on Oct 29, 2013 - 16:16

Got it to work using "14 days" instead of "two weeks". Still not happy with it.

X
x
Replied on Dec 02, 2013 - 19:54

How can I do "every 2 years on Dec 1"?

RB
Robert Bendett
Replied on Dec 02, 2013 - 19:58

I use every 730 days instead of 2 years.

Brendon Wadey staff
Replied on Dec 02, 2013 - 21:21

Hi,

Yes Robert if correct. We will of course continue to try to improve the options for dates.

Regards,
Brendon.

Rick Cogley premium
Replied on Dec 22, 2013 - 09:08

New premium user, adding my voice to this. The "natural language" date adding is rigid and as such, not at all superior where it could be. At this point, I feel it is pretty poor, actually.

For example, I cannot simply say "Every Jan 14" to have it figure out I mean "Every 12 months starting on Jan 14". Also, why couldn't I simply say "Every year starting..." or "Annually starting...". It is not difficult to add this kind of string parsing.

Further, when I enter dates, for whatever reason it won't accept "Jan 14th" but rather expects "14 Jan". Is it linked to the way I have my date display formatting set? If so, why? It should accept whatever I choose to write, not be hard coded in any way.

David Trey staff
Replied on Dec 22, 2013 - 14:28

Hello Rick,

That's not entirely correct. You can set a task to "every 14 jan", you don't have to use "every 12 months starting 14 jan" (in fact, this would be less accurate than "ev 14 Jan").

As for "14 Jan" it should work as well as "Jan 14" depending on your date format settings.

Please let us know what browsers were you using in which you've experienced these issues.


Best regards,
David

Rick Cogley premium
Replied on Dec 23, 2013 - 01:09

David, hi - I'm on OS X Mavericks, latest Chrome.

I just tried a test task, and entered -

every jan 14

It gives the dreaded "invalid date help" red-message-of-death.

every 14 jan

...though, does indeed work. Which is sort of my point. Why would it force you to use one of the other? The date format setting should be about viewing, not about forcing me to remember what I set it to. It should flexibly accept "every 14th jan", "every jan 14th", or, those with ev or just the number 14.

I think I see the subtle difference now that you point it out, between putting simply ev 14 jan, and every 12 months starting 14 jan. It's logically not quite the same, correct?

Well, it would help if there were a couple more examples in your help section on this, and, if the rule was not linked to view format settings. (which it seems to be)

Kind regards,
Rick

Rick Cogley premium
Replied on Dec 23, 2013 - 03:37

One additional observation - when I want to set a reminder, I need to set another specific date. This would be much better if I could simply write -

due date -7 days

Or something like that, relative to the due date I already set on the task. This is useful for things that need a little prep time, like finding that perfect gift before a birthday.

Rick Cogley premium
Replied on Dec 23, 2013 - 03:45

Ok, oddly, I have to set a time to get reminders to be set, and I can pick several options.

If I set a date, why can't it just assume a certain time, like, 0:00:00, and allow a reminder to be set? I have no idea what time people were born, and it's odd to have to set a time when I don't know it.

David Trey staff
Replied on Dec 23, 2013 - 12:43

Rick,

We will consider adding more accepted due date formats in the future.

You don't need to set a date for a reminder if instead of absolute reminders, you'll use relative reminders in which case, you can pick the delay from the drop-down menu and set it to "30 minutes before", "1 day before" etc.

As for your last suggestion - we can't do this as we think most our customers would not want to receive multiple reminders for all tasks with no times on midnight and without a time in either the task or the reminder, this would have to be the default assumption.


Best regards,
David

Rick Cogley premium
Replied on Dec 23, 2013 - 22:45

Hmm, ok, I can understand that.

I am not sure, but it might be useful to have a way of at least setting defaults.

PS
Paula Stewart
Replied on Mar 20, 2014 - 17:58

I agree with the earlier contributor - You need an option to show repeated tasks that are daily on the to do list. If I'm looking at my workload for tomorrow (or a week out) and a task doesn't show up because I haven't done it yet today, that's going to cause me to overbook. On the other hand, the current method is valuable for other purposes, so don't eliminate that one.

Keep up the good work!

J
Joey premium
Replied on Mar 21, 2014 - 08:52

Tasks that are set up for "every" (as opposed to "after") should show on every day being displayed that meets the repeat criteria.

Also, for reasons given elsewhere, not separating the repeat criteria from the due date is, in my mind, a huge design flaw.