Sorting by Priority within the "Today" view
Is it possible to do this? It appears this has been a longstanding issue since July of 2010?!!?
Simply put, I want the "Today" view / query that you have built into the product to sort all the tasks in priority order, i.e. from 1 to 4. I mean, who wouldn't want this?
Right now, I just entered all new tasks into the browser plugin version of the product. I didn't change anything or manually reorder anything. It is showing several P1 tasks, then all my P4 tasks....and then my P2 tasks!??. This makes no sense. Why is there no option / button in the Today view to "sort by priority". Am I missing something?
Asked by matthew oates on Feb 05, 2013 - 11:22
Jeff Bruizeman on Feb 05, 2013 - 12:45
I believe you may be having the same issues as I am. David has been helping me with this since I asked the question a few days ago. See the link below for the ongoing communication between David and myself.
As Jeff said - there seems to be an issue which so far we cannot reproduce and therefore we can't identify it.
By default, all tasks in this view should be automatically sorted by due time first (so tasks that have dates such as "today at 12pm") and then by priority.
Please tell me - how did you set the priority for each task? By typing !p1, !p2, !p3 or !p4 within the task name or by right-clicking on the tasks after you've added them? Also, did you always use the "Quick Add" option or added these tasks from within the project?
Your customers don't seem to have a hard time reproducing this issue. And, in fact, I had the same issue when I first tried your product 2 years ago. It's a bit frustrating to see the same issue exists because your product is so superior in every other way.
In any event, I added the tasks using the "+" button in the browser plugin product. I did not add them from within projects. These were brand new tasks I added from scratch. I then went back and right clicked on the individual tasks to assign priorities. I tried hitting the "refresh" button on the plugin but it didn't change the sorting within the "today" view. I even tried logging out and back in.
The only thing that DID seem to work is when I synced my tasks to the Android version of your product, they sorted correctly on my phone and, subsequently, synced that correct sort order back to the browser plugin version.
I wouldn't think this would be hard to duplicate and, in fact, I would be happy to do it for you. I'll film the entire the process, and send it to you. Would take me all of 4 minutes to duplicate it.
Unfortunately, we still can't find any way to replicate this issue. I've just added multiple tasks due today, then assigned priorities to them and they were placed in the correct order just as I was choosing each priority in real-time.
I've made a short screencast adding 5 test task, assigning priorities and going to the 7 days view: http://screencast.com/t/5iB93dZJfvu
It works this way in multiple browsers, across all plugins and changing a priority of a task that already has one will also correctly move it to the right position.
The tasks which I've postponed to today maintained their order today.
Well, one big difference is that I was *only* using the "Today" view, not the 5 or 7 day view that you showed in your screen capture. And yes, you are more than welcome to access my account directly to see if there is a discrepancy. I'm using a Chrome browser, and originally the browser plugin app....not the browser page interface.
I just tried to reproduce it again, using the Chrome plugin and only using the "today" view. Also the "today, overdue" view, then added tasks from within multiple project, sub-project, with or without labels, different due dates, postponing them etc. All to no avail, it always sorted correctly.
We will check the status of the tasks on your account.
Jeff Bruizeman on Feb 05, 2013 - 20:13
You may gladly access my account. I recently used the drag and drop to move all my tasks to 'tomorrow'. If I query 'tomorrow' all the tasks are in order of priority. What will likely happen is that they will not be in order when I log in tomorrow morning and click on the 'Today' query.
Jeff Bruizeman on Feb 06, 2013 - 06:17
Not sure if anything was done last night, but when I logged in this morning all my Tasks were in order by Priority in the 'today' view.
I'm experiencing the problem today. I had a number of items left over from yesterday and changed the due dates to today. Now those items appear before the items that were previously scheduled for today.
The order is this: there are several P2 items, then some P3 items, then 2 more P2 items followed by some P4 items and some P1 items beneath those.
If I were to guess, based on what I see, I'd say that somehow the old due dates (past due before I changed them) are being used to sort those items before items that were simply due today and not carried over from yesterday.
Hi. I have the same issue..fairly minor. I have a p4 in my p2s and a p4 in the middle of my p4s.
I typically add tasks directly into the browser FF on Windows. At the moment I am using my Mac at home. So, cntrl-F5 is not available to me.
I'm open to any suggestions. <Love the product in general.>
Brett Juilly on Feb 11, 2013 - 09:54
I have the same issue: in my "today" view, I the order is Red, Light Blue, Red, Dark Blue, Red. As a programmer myself, I think it's an issue of priority vs. "dragged position" on recurring tasks. Here's an example:
I have several recurring tasks on which I've set the priority. Some days, I drag them around to reorder them. A few days from now when the tasks come up again, they have BOTH the priority information AND the information from when I dragged them around, and that messes up the order. This would especially happen when (for example) Monday's Today view shows "MWF" recurring task, an "Every Monday" task, and a "Every Day" task.
Reordering prioritized tasks manually does indeed overwrite the automatic priority sorting. Please sort all your tasks by priority manually and it should solve this issue and further tasks should then be added in the correct places according to their priority.
Brett Juilly on Feb 11, 2013 - 11:01
I would love to see a button on the Today view that will group tasks by color priority, and secondarily by the priority they were dragged to in the past. :)
Plus, I have an example I want to describe. (Please bear in mind that I'm a programmer so I'm used to troubleshooting logic problems!) Suppose I create 2 tasks for Monday. I set both their priorities at light blue (I think that'd p3). I make the second task recurring every day. Then I take the second task and drag it to the first position. I would assume you've programmed it so that it gets "drag-priority" 1 at that point!
I create 10 more tasks for Tuesday. I mark them all red or dark blue, which are HIGHER priority than the light blue task from today. When Tuesday comes, I click on the Today view. I think that Monday's recurring, light-blue task with the "drag-priority" of 1 will appear at the top of the list!! (You wrote that "reordering tasks manually does indeed overwrite the automatic priority setting").
Unless drag-priority of recurring tasks get dropped every day, or there's some other algorithm you use to merge recurring tasks from different days that have been dragged around (reordered), I suspect that that might be a cause of this problem. :)
Generally, the manual reorder of a prioritized task will set the point where tasks with the same priority will be added. That said, if you move your p3 tasks above your p1 tasks, each new p3 task will be added to the group where you've put them.
If you prefer to prioritize your tasks more efficiently, we recommend to use due times. If you set one task to "today at 13:20" and another one to "today at 13:50", then the first one will be above the second one regardless of what priority it has as due times put tasks at the very top (both would be above all p1 tasks that don't have a due time.
This way you could schedule your tasks precisely and use priorities as a secondary property only for a few tasks in case they need to be rescheduled.
You must be joking.
So, what you're saying is, in order to get the priority system to work the way it is supposed to, we now have to go in every day and set a "due time" for every task. You can't possibly be suggesting this as a viable method.
Please guys, instead of giving rationalizations for how this isn't working or blaming your users for "using the system incorrectly" just :
1) Admit that it's broken
2) Fix it already.
Your product is so superior in every way, I don't see how you can tolerate a bug as obvious and annoying as this one for the user experience. It's a major pain.
It seems like that best way to fix this would be just to create a "Sort by Priority" button / option for the Today view. Have it reset everything to the color priority order. Done.
Brett Juilly on Feb 11, 2013 - 13:59
Thanks Matthew. I agree that Todoist is generally an EXCELLENT (and very inexpensive!) tool, but that a "Sort by Priority" button would be a big help. And probably easy for you guys to program. :)
We're not suggesting incorrect usage. If you don't add times to tasks, the system should sort them automatically by priority. We're aware of the bug causing it not to work and we're working on fixing it.
In the meantime, to inform about other methods of influencing the task order, I've mentioned the option to assign due times to tasks. We're very sorry for the delays in fixing this issue and any inconvenience it has caused you.
It really shouldn't be that complex, though. It seems like priority and due date/time should take precedent over anything else when it comes to the Today view. I can only see manual ordering making sense as it applies to other tasks of the same priority--but never appearing above items of a higher priority.
Brett Juilly on Feb 14, 2013 - 13:54
Jamie described my expectations perfectly too.
Brett Juilly on Feb 22, 2013 - 19:25
Looks fantastic so far! Thank you SO MUCH for handling this so quickly! :D
Brett Juilly on Feb 23, 2013 - 12:41
Well, it messed up for me just now. Shoot.
I'm in the "Today" view. There are a few items from Yesterday at the top of the screen. 3 are Red priority, 1 is Dark Blue priority, and several are Transparent priority. When I changed one of Yesterday's Transparent priorities to Dark Blue, it jumped to the TOP of the Yesterday section (above the Red priority).
Brett Juilly on Feb 23, 2013 - 19:41
I can't say for sure. I'm pretty sure I haven't reordered any tasks in the "Today" view since I joined this thread. However, I did change the priority of several tasks.
Well...bummer. I spoke too soon. I woke up today, CTRL-Left clicked all my tasks and hit "Do It Today" from the selection at the top (in order to move them today), and it ordered all my tasks *almost* correctly. Unfortunately, it put one of my Red (p1) tasks below all my Light Blue (p3) tasks. I had not manually reordered this task at any time.
Thank you for this information. Unfortunately, the fix we've implemented recently may not affect tasks that might have been sorted incorrectly in the past.
If you've rearranged them to the right position now, it should work as expected from now on. Please let us know if that won't be the case.
The 'today' and '7 day' view seem to sort perfectly now. However, within projects there can still be some very odd sorting, like all P3s above P2s. Or, a P4 at the top. Some of mine may have been manually sorted but something's not working.
Almost there. A definite improvement.
Please tell me:
- Does clearing the cache and the offline app data solve this issue?
- Are all tasks that you're referring to in this project on the same indent level? Please note that a sub-task structure is sorted separately within a parent task.
- Does the issue persist after you've reordered your tasks?
How do you clear the 'offline app data?'
I'm willing to experiment for you if you give me instructions.
My setup is using Firefox on Mac and Windows, Safari sometimes on iPad, and app on iPhone and iPad (sometimes). I know how to clear the cache on FF.
The out of order tasks are at the same level, and have not always been manually reordered, e.g. one unordered and new p4 was at the top of all priorities for one project.
On Firefox, you can clear the application data in Options -> Advanced -> Network. Here, you can clear the cache, but also, below this option, you will find "Offline Web Content and User Data" and here you can clear it or remove todoist.com from the list of apps storing offline data.
Then, please go to Todoist directly through this URL: https://todoist.com (make sure you don't have any bookmarks pointing to a different URL) and choose "Allow" when Firefox asks you for permission to store offline data.
Now please try to use the "sort by priority" option and let me know if the issue persist. If it does, try it in Firefox's "Private Browsing" mode.
Hi David, I took some time before replying because I wanted to thoroughly test it out.
I give you an "A." I am so happy to see everything sorted by priority with date I must be a total geek.
The cache and offline data clear worked in Firefox for both Mac and Windows. The first time I checked it I had to sort by priority, then date, to have everything sort correctly, but now that does not seem to be needed.
The only thing that fell short of an "A+" is I have a P2 task created today that is due at 20:30 that sorts ahead of the P1s both in the project, and today view. You should be aware of that.
Like todoist enough to write a blog about it http://blinkassociates.com/blog/new-years-resolution-to-do-cloud/
We're glad to hear that you like our app and that the sorting works for you mostly now. Reg. the one task that doesn't want to sort properly, please tell me - is there anything specific about this task? Was it added through a mobile app, through the Quick Add feature or was its priority changed etc.?
If not, please try to change its priority to 1 and then back to 2 and if this won't work, put it in between other P2 tasks on the project list and then see if the sorting will affect it.
The troublesome task was added via the website.
I changed the priority to P1, but when changed back to P2 it still went to the top (with the time). When I manually moved it and then sorted by date it went to the top. "S" in today view also moves it to the top. Deleting the time makes it sort with the other P2 tasks.
Jeff Bruizeman on Mar 11, 2013 - 07:22
The Today sorting has been working good up until today. This morning I updated about 13 tasks using the multiple select and then clicking on 'Do it Today'. The 1st task listed under 'today' is a priority one, followed by 10 priority twos, then 3 priority threes, then 2 priority twos, then 7 priority ones and finally a priority 4.
@Mark - If you're referring only to the "today" view, then it's normal for a task with a time to be on top. All tasks on this view are sorted primarily by time and then tasks without a time are sorted by priority.
@Jeff - Please tell me, is this new order persistent now or does force-reloading the page with Ctrl+F5 change the order? Also, before you've updated these tasks, were other tasks with priorities that were already listed under "today" in the correct order?
Jeff Bruizeman on Mar 11, 2013 - 07:46
Unfortunately I already changed the order but before I did I clicked on 'Normal' and then back on 'today' thinking that they would reorder themselves properly. They did not. I believe the tasks listed in 'today' were in the right order, but I do remember that the overdue tasks were not in order.
@Jeff - it is possible that some tasks might have been affected by the older issue that we've experienced reg. sorting by priority and unfortunately, the fix might have not affected all tasks. We're sorry for the inconvenience and if this issue occurs again even for new tasks, please let us know.
@Mark - The "today" or "7 days" views are primarily date views so the main sorting is by date then time, but you can view tasks with a certain priority by typing p1 within the search box. This will show tasks with the first priority and they will be sorted by date. We recommend that you set a custom filter for your Todoist start page including both options. Please go to the Settings -> General Settings, choose "Custom query" from the drop-down menu in the "Start page" and type:
tod, od, p1
as a query. From now on, each time you open Todoist, you will see overdue tasks, today's tasks and then all tasks with the top priority. You can also set any other custom query as default this way.
Thanks for the tip. I use those types of search often, but I didn't know I could set the start page, so that's useful, thanks.
One thing that would very helpful to query would be by project. Right now I tag all my work todos @work since I can't search within project. So, I spend a lot of my work day within od, tod, @work. I could probably almost do without projects and just use tags exclusively, but sometimes I forget to add them to @work, which is a nuisance.
OK, not sure if you changed something, but my Today view has been working brilliantly up until this morning. Now the priorities are all skewed again. I don't have any times associated with my tasks, and I have not manually moved their order. I selected everything with CTRL-click and hit "Do It Today" and suddenly everything is out of priority order. I have a P1, the P2, P2, P3, P3, and then four P1's.
Do you guys change something? Because it was working fine until about an hour ago.
Unfortunately, we're back to square one. After manually re-ordering my tasks yesterday into the right priority order, I opened Todoist this morning and my tasks in my Today view are all over the place in terms of priority. HIghly annoying, especially given the fact that it was working *perfectly* for the last several weeks.
You guys are more than welcome to log into my account to see what's happening. I will leave the priorities alone today. I know you said you haven't changed anything but why would it work perfectly for weeks and then suddenly go haywire on the priorities?
Thanks again for looking into this. It's really the most important and crucial feature of my Today view.
We're very sorry for the inconvenience, but we haven't changed anything lately and in all our tests, the priority sorting works fine. Without having a reliable way to reproduce this issue so that we can see a clear pattern of what exact action changes the order of these tasks, we cannot identify or fix the source of this issue.
We will try to investigate your particular case and we hope we figure out what's causing this.
Hello David, etc-
This is still a mystery to me. Early in March sorting was perfect within projects and days. Now it is all over the place. Projects tend to sort almost correctly. Frequently if I sort by priority, then date, everything falls into place. However when I look at the days (today, tomorrow), 99% of the time at least something's out of place - usually a high priority task at the bottom. I can't discern a pattern but there's a hint that tasks postponed or recurring are more problematic. The problem is worse on Windows than Mac.
Is it time to clear the cache again? Any other suggested fixes?
Please try to clear the cache and see if it solves the issue. In case of the Windows and Mac apps, please use the app's Logout option which will clear the cache of this app (in Windows it's accessible through the TD icon in the notifications area and on Mac through the TD icon at the top-right of the menu bar).
Unfortunately, we still can't reproduce it. If you notice that this occurs only to tasks with a certain date formula or only those you postpone, please let us know. Also, how do you postpone a task? Using "Postpone", "Do it today" or dragging & dropping it to the other day (which will indeed cause it to be placed in a different position - where you've dropped it).
Hi. I cleared the cache and offline data for both windows and mac and it worked for a day. Now, it' mostly there, but some issues. In one project view I have a p2 I created loser than a p3 previously created. The 'today' view, seems perfect however, so this is a definite improvement.
I was thinking of disabling offline data, as this would not be important to me. (I would use iPad.) What do you think of that?
Unfortunately, without having even one way of reliably reproducing this issue so that we can repeat certain steps and it would always break the priority order, there's not much we can do. If there's anything in particular that you can do to trigger it - please let us know.
As for offline data - if possible, please try to allow it. Even though Todoist should work without it, we recommend to have it on for improved performance and prevention of data loss.
Ok. Here's one pattern from today:
- I created several tasks for tomorrow with different priorities in one project - "work."
- I postponed a host of todos that didn't get done today to tomorrow.
- Within the project, all the new todos are listed below all the todos that were postponed. So, There's a set of task in descending priority order, and then another set in descending priority - except they all all the same day so they should all be sorted by priority.
The 7 day view does seem to sort correctly.
So, perhaps you can reproduce this.
Yes, this can be reproduced if you're within a project, postpone tasks in this project and don't reload the page - then all tasks will stay in the order as they were as this action will not automatically change the order in the project unless you use the "sort by priority" option again.
Please clarify - in what view did you postpone these tasks and what exact steps did you follow to trigger this issue (that is - did you reload the page, use any sorting option, how did you postpone them, one-by-one or with multi-select)?
Guy, I like your product very much and even wrote a blog post about it http://blinkassociates.com/blog/new-years-resolution-to-do-cloud/
However, this sorting issue is becoming a deal breaker for me. I've cleared caches and nothing help. I routinely have high priority tasks at the bottom of the projects and days. There is no clear pattern to this, sometimes these out of order tasks are recurring, sometimes brand new. If I can't get a fix for these issues I'm going to start looking at other solutions again, which would be a shame. Simply put - the sorting doesn't work.
We're sorry to hear that, but unfortunately, we can't reproduce this issue under any circumstance and we've tried every possible option of moving, postponing, rescheduling and re-prioritizing tasks that we could think of.
If you'll notice any pattern to this issue - if any of these tasks have something in common, please let us know as without being able to reproduce it even once, there's no way of telling what may cause this and the code responsible for sorting seems to be fine.
Brett Juilly on May 16, 2013 - 14:15
I appreciate that you guys don't look at people's tasks without their permission. Seems like you should create a "text free" view for your own testing, so a person's tasks just appear as objects without any private information (text) on them. That way, when somebody like Mark (or me) reports this bug, you can immediately go into their task list and investigate without viewing any private information.
BTW, I've had this same sorting problem myself, and I just live with it. I can't find a repeatable pattern either.
Mark, I'm gonna have to side with you on this. The problem has gotten *much* better I have to admit over the last several months, but it still occurs randomly and without any observable cause.
The standard reply for the last year has been "we can't duplicate the problem". Well, I'm sorry but that is starting to not cut it. Anyone who *actually uses* this product every day can't help but run into this problem. I guess I would have to ask the developers "are you actually using your own product on a daily basis?" Because if so, you're going to see this happen.
To follow up on my last comment, I guess what I'm trying to say is that I think this is a problem that occurs from *cumulative* use, and builds up over time. Therefore, it probably cannot be duplicated in an isolated, single test environment. I usually see these things start happen after continual use of, say, a weeks worth of daily entering and updating tasks, projects, labels, priorities, etc. Maybe 2 weeks.
We're very sorry for the inconvenience, we will try to observe the copies of your accounts (completely anonymous, with blank fillers replacing real data, as Brett suggested) and hope to find the source of this issue.
Matthew, we use Todoist all the time and it never happens to us and so far, we've had about 10 reports about this issue out of 600,000 users. Therefore, it seems to be very rare and must be triggered by certain very specific steps.
Again, on the back-end, we couldn't find any bugs and based on our daily use of Todoist for many years, we haven't experienced it yet.
Brett Juilly on May 17, 2013 - 00:36
David, I want to say thank you. The comments from the ToDoist staff are always understanding, helpful, sincere, and professional. I always get the feeling that you're concerned about any issues we encounter and that you are actively trying to resolve them.