674: Workflows with Shawn Blanc

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Looking forward to this! I had thought we have been hearing from Shawn a lot lately, and then realized the last time I heard him on a podcast was 2019! Talk about a time warp (probably a lot thanks to COVID)…time flies!

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Nice episode. On Things and recurring events, as I understand it, you can set a start date earlier than due date, and mark recurring tasks complete ahead of a due date. See @ldebritto post Schedulling recurring tasks on Things 3 a long digression

@ismh

This gets brought up every time somebody mentions this Things flaw, but it’s not always applicable. As a simple example: I have a note to send an invoice on the last Thursday of the month to a client. That works 11/12 times a year. I set the invoice to pop up on the last Thursday, due the same day. I do not want to see it before that.

Once a year, I need to send that invoice a week early (because of Christmas). Or, maybe I go on vacation and need to send it before I go. I need to be able to check off the task before it pops up in this circumstance.

If the task pops up in my Today view a week before it’s due, I have to make a few mental leaps: I can’t do it 11/12 times on that day. It would irk the client and make me look bad. So I have to reschedule it. This defeats the point of the Today view.

I think Things is beautiful, and generally works great, but this is a show stopper for a lot of people for good reason.

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I agree it’s annoying, but Things’ scheduling is pretty robust once you dive in. It takes just a different mindset of planning out some tasks.

In your example, you could create a “yearly” recurring task, which Things allows you to specify multiple options for this “single” item. Then you can tell it, Jan - Nov is the last Thursday, but December is the 3rd Thursday. :blush:

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I am aware of this feature, but this is an awful lot of work to do on the user’s end to account for the app’s missing feature.

My point is just that if somebody sees the lack of this feature as a dealbreaker, that’s fine. I don’t want to do this in my task manager either, which is why I no longer use Things. I need a task manager that adjusts to me, not the other way around.

Yep. Totally fine. For me there are other “deal breaker” things that other task managers do that annoy me more than this does in Things. So I just wanted to make others aware that there is a more approachable workaround than simply scheduling everything to show ahead of time and having to constantly adjust.

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That completion rate stat from Shawn’s interview was startling. 2-3% for a traditional course, 80% for a cohort-based course with regular meetups. Price increases might also factor into that, but, that seems like something every family and company should be trying to figure out how to incorporate into learning and training.

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Totally fair! I think Things and OF folks alike can be a little overzealous about their preference (I’m an OF person still, and I can definitely be a little overzealous about it). I’m always trying to push back on some of us to make sure we all know that one can be aware of the options and still not want to use any app for any number of reasons.

Glad Things works for you! Wish it worked for me.

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