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A few questions regarding the new search options

A few questions regarding the new search options:

1) Is there a way to search for tasks which do not have a date on them? For example show all tasks with an @home label where the due date is blank?

2) How do I search for tasks in my @home label and which either are due in 7 days OR are priority 1 (and have no due date). So I want to do something lke this:
(overdue, 7 days) & @home | @home & p1
But this produces no results.
My basic problem is this (and maybe you can suggest a whole different/better way to approach it)... I have a bunch of tasks in my @home label. Some tasks
have due dates and repeat weekly, and some tasks are one-off and have no due date. I want to be able to see everything I need to work on for the week
and exclude repeating tasks that have a due date 7 days away (that I already completed this week). Some of the tasks which have no due date have a p1 priority
and I want to see those, but some have a p4 priority and I don't want to see those.
If I search for simply "@home", it includes the tasks 7 days away (that I already completed this week).

3) Are there plans to add the ability to save our searches, and for us to be able to name our saved searches so I don't have to remember and type in the syntax each time?

4) Why is the "OR" syntax inconsistent for labels and time periods?
a) You use a pipe "|" to do an "OR" between two labels. For example:
"@work | @office" = Show all items that are labeled with @work or @office.
b) You use commas and parenthesis to "OR" between time periods. For example:
"(over due, 7 days) & priority 1" = Show priority 1 tasks that are over due or due in the next 7 days.

5) Whenever you do a search using a time period, you get the results back separated by day of the week, which takes up a lot of space with all the
headers for each day. Is there a way to just list the tasks closer together without the headers (formatted as if you had done a label search)?
I use the Chrome extension a lot, and the pop-up window is so small I am always scrolling down to see what I need.

All responses

David Trey  staff
Replied on May 22, 2013 - 16:46 UTC

Hello Nick,

1) Yes, to do so search for:

no date @label

2) If I understand this correctly, you don't have to customize the search too much because each task that is recurring, but has been completed will not show in the search results as at the moment of completion its date is pushed to the next occurrence so searching just for "7 days" will never show a task that's recurring and due in 10 days.

In the particular situation you've mentioned, you'd have to search for:

(7 days @home) !p4

This will show all your tasks due within 7 days that have the @home label but are not priority 4. However, the situation you've described at the beginning of this question would require this search:

(7 days @home) | (7 days & p1 & no date)

Please clarify if this is what you were looking for, if not, please describe the search exactly and I'll try to find the correct solution.

3) Yes, this will be possible in future updates.

4) We've used a comma for date-based searches for a very long time and we want to maintain this simple syntax for dates.

5) We may consider it in the future and you're welcome to add a request to our Votebox: http://todoist.com/Vote/

Best regards,

Nick JH  premium
Replied on May 22, 2013 - 17:11 UTC

Thanks for all your answers.
For #2 I think what I really want to do is this:
(7 days @home) | (@home & p1 & no date)
However, this produces weird results as it repeats the tasks with no due date on every day of the week.

I will try and explain better what I am trying to do:
I have a label @home which includes tasks of the following types:
(a) Tasks due within 7 days, p1
(b) Tasks due beyond 7 days, p1
(c) Tasks with no due date, p1
(d) Tasks with no due date, p4
I only want to display (a) and (c). This will be everything I need to get done in a weekend, and will not include tasks I want to get done NEXT weekend.

If I search for "@home", then I get (a), (b), (c), and (d).

If I search for "7 days @home", then I get (a).

If I search for "@home & p1 & no date" then I get (c)

if I search for "(7 days @home) | (@home & p1 & no date)" then I do get only (a) and (c), but (c) is repeated under each day (so this ties in with #5 in my original questions).

Nick JH  premium
Replied on May 22, 2013 - 17:17 UTC

Edit: I have actually found a solution to this... If I swap them over and search for this:
(@home & p1 & no date) | (7 days @home)
instead of this:
(7 days @home) | (@home & p1 & no date)
...then I get the results I want!

The only tiny annoying thing is the ugly header I now get at the top of the search results page:
"@home & Priority 1 & Tasks with no due date | & @home | & @home | & @home | & @home | & @home | & @home | & @home | & @home"
... but I can live with that. Presumably when you allow us to save and name our queries it will display that name at the top of the search results page.

May I suggest you change your documentation to include the "no date" option and some other more complex queries like this?

David Trey  staff
Replied on May 22, 2013 - 17:28 UTC


I'm glad to hear that you've found the solution, we will consider adding other examples of the search syntax. The "no due date" syntax is already documented (has been before this change, too).

I'll let the developers know about the header.

Best regards,