How do you organize your TODO list?

Over the past months, I have tried to organize my TODO list better.

Often I kept emails unread in my Inbox: I thought, that I would know which emails I still have to answer. But I realized that this was very confusing, and there was no order at all.

One attempt was to use a virtual board with notes on it, based on http://www.aypwip.org/webnote/. That got quite messy, with too many notes moving around all the time.

Kanban

There is a short description of the Kanban method: http://kanboard.net/documentation/what-is-kanban

Kanban was invented by Toyota. It can be used for organising your work. You can see your tasks visually, and can decide to focus on tasks by limiting the tasks that you currently work on.

Organising your tasks on boards and columns

I have a board per project: For example, one board for Kolab, one board for OpenPetra, one board for TBits.net, and one board for daily things. I create my own columns on those boards.

For my daily board, these are the columns I use:

  • A column for incoming, things that you will need to sort later when you have time into the proper column.
  • Another column I have is for today: these are the things that are important now, and I want to finish them today.
  • Another column is called “week”: these are the things that I want to deal with this week.
  • Another column is “month”.
  • Another column is: “Long term goals”.

For the project specific boards, I have columns for subprojects, but also for daily, weekly and long-term tasks.

Trello

Trello is a free service. You can create several boards, and each board can have as many columns as you want. The UI is very nice, and it is easy to add new columns, to close tasks, to move tasks between boards.

Kanboard

Unfortunately, Trello is not free software, and you cannot install it on your own server. So I looked for an Open Source alternative, and I found Kanboard. It is written in PHP. Some elements of the user interface are still involving too many clicks for my taste, but it is open source, and I already got one pull request merged on Github…

Moving your data from Trello to Kanboard

I was able to improve an existing importer from Trello to Kanboard: https://github.com/tpokorra/kanboard-import-trello forked from https://github.com/matueranet/kanboard-import-trello

With my improvements of the importer, all my comments and checklists on all cards got imported from Trello. Empty columns were ignored. The importer uses the JSON API of Trello to download the boards and cards.

 

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