*A simple to-do list

For existing requests please see The Wish List
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 12 Apr 2019 10:41

One advantage of having separate Notes linked into a Named List is FH assigns an Updated Date-Time to each Note.
So in the Named List use Configure Columns to add an Updated column that can be sorted chronologically.
That Date-Time will reflect when the Note was created or updated.
Different Named Lists can can keep track of different To-Do topics.

Note records also offer Custom Id and Last Change Note fields that could be used for status or keywords.
Those fields could be customised into the Note Property Box Main tab and the Named List columns.
Queries could search for status and keywords in Note records in nominated Named Lists.
They could also produce a printable report including all the column details, etc.

It is possible to link Source records to Note records and thus indirectly Repository and Media records.
Those can also be added as Named List columns and included in Query based reports..

I'm on the verge of moving this back to the General Usage forum :) :?
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby Valkrider » 12 Apr 2019 11:52

Mike

I think you should split the thread if you are going to move it. I would like a proper To Do List along the lines of what has been previously suggested. I just see this latest series of threads as a 'work around' and not a proper sortable To Do list. Hopefully we can get a consensus and formulate a proper Wish List item as well as the workaround.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 12 Apr 2019 12:08

Colin, I take it that your requirements are essentially the same as Helen's.
But there is a difference of opinion over whether Repositories and Sources, etc, are essential or just nice to have.
Can you clarify what you mean by sortable as not much has been said about that.

This thread can remain in either or both Forums, and there can also be a Wish List entry.

I am starting to think that a Wish List entry should just list desired features in precedence order, rather than try to define essential and optional features.
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby Valkrider » 12 Apr 2019 12:47

Mike

My requirements are the same as Helen's it is just we disagree on desirable vs must have.

My view is that BOTH Repositories and Sources should be sortable so as to group all research required at a given Repository or Source should be grouped together so that a list can be prepared for any research trip. Likewise, it should be sortable on an individual so it answers the question what am I looking for for this person. Needless to say a print out would also be desirable too.

I am coming round to the way of thinking that this may be something for an Ancestral Sources type of companion programme rather than something actually built in to Family Historian although if it could this would, of course, be a better solution.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby davidf » 12 Apr 2019 12:48

tatewise wrote:list desired features in precedence order, rather than try to define essential and optional features.

I am not sure we will get consensus on this - possibly falling back on trying to design the solution rather than think about the range of user requirements.

My pennyworth of the range of things that I currently try to record/manage
A list to hold/manage:
  1. Niggling worries to sort out (Is x really the father of y - given recently found baptism record)
  2. Major Projects to do (do surname based family reconstruction for all x's in Cumberland during range of census availability)
  3. Status of Major Projects underway
  4. "Placemarks" detailing where you had got to before having to interrupt (Completed review of C17th Colchester St Andrews Baps & Burials - other Colchester parishes and all marriages O/S)
  5. Specific records/record sets to look at next time Ancestry has a free week-end (or when visiting a library with Ancestry access)
  6. Specific tasks to do when next visiting an archive
  7. Clean-ups (Review FH "Places" for standardisation)
  8. System issues (Get AS working under WINE)
  9. Things to ask about at next Family History Event at York/Huddersfield/Excel

Is it helpful to try and see if there is a consensus on the sort of things we want to list (such as above), and then say OK what features do we need to make such a system useful (for instance the above would highlight linking to sources/repositories). For some requirements dates are important for others, less so. Some tie tightly to FH, others don't.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 12 Apr 2019 14:01

Colin, thank you for the clarification of requirements.
The idea of an 'independent' utility has been suggested in various forms:
In my first reply I suggested a Plugin that managed a To-Do List and would integrate with FH.
Others have suggested that rather than write a utility from scratch an existing utility could be integrated with FH.

David, thank you for your list, but everyone could come up with a variety of similar lists.
Unfortunately, they don't really help us specify to FH what we want implemented.
That needs a list of features that allow all manner of such lists to managed.
You need to re-focus and think of what features a To-Do List must posses to allow you to compose and use your lists.
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 12 Apr 2019 15:04

Mike,
I'm with Colin -- I don't see why you should move this out of the Wish List forum until it's been discussed some more. (And to be honest, I'm not sure why it's your decision? You're not the only person able to create wish list items!)

I'm working on a summary of what's been said so far -- and, as I suspected, we're all using the words to-do list to mean very different things (all of which are perfectly valid requirements -- not that anyone needs me or anyone else to tell them what is valid for the way they work -- but they're requirements for different beasts. There may not even be a single Wish-list item, but a couple.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 12 Apr 2019 15:23

Helen, since I am more than satisfied with the Named List and Custom Fact approaches, I am entirely happy to bow out and let others take this forward. I've plenty of other things demanding my time.
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby davidf » 12 Apr 2019 15:43

tatewise wrote:David, thank you for your list, but everyone could come up with a variety of similar lists.
Unfortunately, they don't really help us specify to FH what we want implemented.
That needs a list of features that allow all manner of such lists to managed.
You need to re-focus and think of what features a To-Do List must posses to allow you to compose and use your lists.


Well let's try and work through the next stage - although I think it may be worth cycling through the top level to see if people have different ideas of the sort of things you might do with a "To Do List". Once we have a set of requirements, the next stage is to blow them out into more detailed functional requirements. If the list I proposed was the complete list, you might then expand into the following functional requirements:

  1. Niggling worries to sort out (e.g. Is x really the father of y - given recently found baptism record)
    • List ideally links to a specific relationship "fact" or is collated from tags attached to a fact*
    • Classification: "niggle" - may want to review "all niggles"
  2. Major Projects to do (e.g. do surname based family reconstruction for all x's in Cumberland during range of census availability)
    • Probably needs significant text space to specify the project
    • Needs a status field (see below)
    • May want to link to specific record sets
    • May want to link to a query (e.g. Show all X's in Cumberland who did not die before 1841 and who where not born after 1911) - the todo list does not (necessarily) run the query, just reminds you that you created it to assist the project and can flip you to the query window with the query selected.
  3. Status of Major Projects underway
    • Some form of "summary report"
  4. "Placemarks" detailing where you had got to before having to interrupt (e.g. Completed review of C17th Colchester St Andrews Baps & Burials - other Colchester parishes and all marriages O/S)
    • Needs a brief aide-memoire type text field, probably a date
    • If work was associated with say a record set, want a link to that record set (=source?!)
    • Want a tag of some sort in the note against a source that there is a work-in-progress "to do item" linking to that item
  5. Specific records/record sets to look at or individuals/families to trace next time Ancestry has a free access week-end (or when visiting a library with Ancestry access)
    • Link the repository (e.g. Ancestry) to specific sources (as a lumper, I record in the source note what searches I have done against that source - e.g. NSW Immigration records; 12/02/2015 Searched (Exact) for "......"; found 14 records - 12 into FT, 2 unrelated)
  6. Specific tasks to do when next visiting an archive
    • List of sources to review; individuals/families to investigate
    • The Repository (e.g. Kew, Carlisle Record Office, IWM-North, assuming this is how it is being used)
  7. Clean-ups (e.g. Review FH "Places" for standardisation)
    • Specification of what is being done, statement of where you have got to in doing so
    • Dates?
  8. System issues (e.g. Get AS working under WINE)
    • may be merely convenient to hold this "to do" here; but needs no more than a note and a date?
  9. Things to ask about at next Family History Event at e.g. York/Huddersfield/Excel
    • again may be merely convenient to hold this "to do" here; but needs no more than a note and a date?
    • treat in a similar way to Archive visits above?
    • useful to link to a calendaring program (but suspect we use too wide a range of programs for this to be anything more than a hyperlink)

This is not a complete list but items I know I would like to see. In terms of systems development, I would be wary of going much further because you begin to step into "systems specification"areas - which is rather telling Calico Pie how to do their job!

However I do see two "systemy" things that I think would make it easier and these both involve linking the todo list with the FH database.

For instance * "Tags attached to a Fact". What might I mean? Suppose in a note we have [[^^Check this in light of Parish Register of Baptisms]] and the Plug-in (or whatever) scans all notes for [[^^ ....]] and displays all the paragraphs it finds as a list of "Things to work on" (This is similar to how Zim's Tasklist works and could make use of some of the conventions used in todo.txt). This enables a link from the database to the Todo list.

What is clear to me is that if we go beyond a mere "notepad" type list it is very useful to be able to reference from the todo list to the FH database - various data items within the FH database, be they individuals, families, sources (if we treat them as record sets), repositories (if we treat them as places where we find sources), or specific facts, or even places. Thus we can select an item on the list and go to the records concerned (much as you can go - within FH - to records associated with say a place)

Final thought. Do we want this to work at a Program level or a FH Project Level?

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 12 Apr 2019 17:29

I'm seeing (perhaps) two sets of generic requirements so far (please correct me if I've misrepresented anything that has been said).

1. What has been called a 'Simple To-Do List'.

This is the ability to create and update simple notes (about research or other tasks, at whatever level of detail satisfies a particular user), with a Heading or Title, some editable free-form content (as much or as little -- including nothing -- as the user wants for a particular item, a Date (although it isn't clear to me whether this is the date created/updated, or a due date -- we seem to have both suggested, so maybe both are needed).

There should be an option for users to choose to have the To-Do List readily visible when FH starts up and/or the option to receive reminders about due items.

What have I missed out? Should the 'simple list' support sorting, filtering ,querying and reporting (in so far as you can do this with free-form content) ? Linking to anything in FH? One list per project, one overall, or both?

2. A more heavy-weight 'Structured To-Do List'

As well as the capabilities of the simple list, this could include:

    * the ability to link to all FH record types (individual, family, source, repository, media, other notes) as well as to facts for individuals and families, and perhaps also queries reports and diagrams?
    * the availability of to-do specific fields for tracking such as priority and status, and one or more flags
    * the ability to query, sort, filter and report on all aspects of the to-do items
    * the ability to group discrete to-do items to create a 'project' or 'plan'
    * the ability to link to a webpage

Of course, not all these facilities would be used for every to-do item.

I've deliberately not talked about the type of to-do items being tracked -- I don't believe it's possible to compile a definitive list, although everybody will have their own list that they can 'test' against the requirement to see what is missed.

I've also stepped away from discussion of solutions. I propose once we've thrashed out the must-haves for each kind of To-Do List that we to look in more detail at where the current possibilities fall short (including where the documentation can be improved to make them less daunting for beginners); and what might be better done with a plugin or external programme(s) rather than developed inside FH by Calico Pie. We can then formulate wish-list requests for Calico Pie to consider.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby davidf » 13 Apr 2019 16:03

Helen

I think I generally agree with your analysis.

For a solution to (1) - your 'Simple To-Do List', a stand alone application or the calendaring function of many email clients may already do what many people want, some of which I have mentioned:
  • ToDo.txt - which being text based integrates into some calendaring functions and Apple & Android tablets/smartphones.
    The todo.txt format is a simple set of rules that make todo.txt both human and machine-readable. The format supports priorities, creation and completion dates, projects and contexts.
    The "format" may be worth considering if writing a plug in
  • Zim with its task lists. This works as a wiki (but on your PC). You can write pages (about work you are doing) and by entering lines - any where - such as [] Review Beaumont Parish Register, you create tasks in the actual context which the TaskList will then pull together to create a single "To Do" List.
  • The Lightening calendar in the Thunderbird Email client (I'm sure Outlook must do something similar)
  • Evernote (and similar) - does the Knowledgebase Note on Evernote still apply?
  • Other applications (anyone up for a full rewrite of the old DOS application Lotus Agenda?)
The documented "work-arounds" (such as the Research Planner or To Do Lists) probably also need to be considered as they may meet many requirements - they just look a bit daunting!. (The Research Planner is considerably more than a "work-around".) The most workable may form the basis of a plug-in. I am trying to realise the full potential of =GetLabelledText() as recently highlighted by Jane in another post and as used in the Custom Attributes work-around.

Do we kick off a separate thread reviewing stand-alone To Do Lists (and then summarise to the Knowledgebase) and then see if there is demand for something more closely integrated with FH and if so are there features in these stand-alone applications which we find particularly useful?

For a solution to (2) - your more heavy-weight 'Structured To-Do List' (which compared to project management tools is still pretty "simple"!) covers many of the features that I would like to see. I might add on reflection the ability to "outline" so that tasks can be organised in a hierarchy.

One of the features I have not got my mind fully around is where we want to actually "hold" specific items. This is more than a system design question because it goes to how we want to interact with the list.
  • The ToDo list application could maintain its own data outside the project GEDCOM within its own data strutures
    • This implies working from the list to the data ("What have I got to do?" - then I go and do it)
    • This means that it could potentially work across multiple projects (which could be important in pulling together actions from multiple projects prior to say visiting an archive).
  • Alternatively it could collate items held within the GEDCOM (either as custom facts or within notes attached to any record type).
    • You put the "to do" item where it belongs
    • This has the possible advantage that as you work through particular records, you would come across the "to do items" - which may be an appropriate way to prod users that there is work outstanding (especially those of the niggle type).
    • This implies the ability to work from the data to the to do list ("What was it that I had to do with this individual"? - then I look up what was outstanding)
    • This also means that the items could be exportable (but would that be useful?).

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 15 Apr 2019 19:06

davidf, I'm not ignoring you -- I'm just swamped with other stuff. Give me a few days to respond?

One immediate question -- do you see an standalone calendaring/todo list application as something you would want Calico Pie to incorporate via a wishlist item( unlikely to get implemented, IMO, as there are so many possibilities and it's doubtful that CP would endorse one -- I use ToDoist plus Trello for complicated projects; other will use Wunderlist, Outlook, Evernote, OneNote, Zim....) so if we're looking for a integration with standalone product for to-do management, I suspect we should be discussing it in a thread in the General Usage Forum and then bring it back to Plugins or Wish List as appropriate? Are you willing to lead that, while I look at how to satisfy needs using existing facilities? Worst case, it will give us as a Knowledgebase article ( as will my work on existing facilities -- I expect to update what exists].

[I will add that having written a Genealogy Research Manager and failed to find a market, avoiding double data entry (including links between items) for individuals families sources places addresses is essential but the links are vital! As is something that performs well.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby WilliamFrier » 16 Apr 2019 22:44

Wow this has grown arms and legs, so here is my opinion on this. I feel that if I wanted something as powerful as Outlook I would just use Outlook which I do (If you use Microsoft for your email, they do a great online calendar and to-do list, windows and phone apps for calendars and task/to-do's which all sync with each other). I feel that all the other things people are asking for can be easily added to a note attached to the to-do, this is why I said a simple to-do list with a heading/note/date and reminder and now I look at what I requested a tick box to mark as complete. To me, having the option to see a list when I open FH would be great, just an option to select this (not force it on anyone who doesn't want it) in options/settings, as this would mean not missing something I was doing/going to do by not opening another program.

I know what I am asking for can be done better in other programs (Outlook being one), I really just want all my family tree stuff carried out in the one place and think that asking CP to write an integrated more powerful version of Outlook Task into FH would be more than I or anyone else could ask for (When it has already there) and would probably make the Wish never happen. "From small acorns, mighty oaks grow" comes to mind, get the thing in the program and then let it develop if it is found to be of great use or binned if it ends up with only me using it.

I will be coming back for help with the other workarounds that have been suggested, as I am sure if they are not exactly what I am asking for just now will be of great help in the future for other things. So to everyone I have caused a headache to over this wish, please be nice to me and don't let me make any other suggestions :lol:
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby Gowermick » 17 Apr 2019 06:11

WilliamF,
I agree with your sentiment. In your original post, I think most replies overlooked the term Simple.
Like you, I don’t need calendars, reminders or alarms etc, as adding these to the requirements would mean it would never get implemented.

The one thing I did miss coming from FTM, was a simple ToDo list, with tick boxes to say they are complete. It was manually sortable, so you could move the current favourite to the top, and it was opened and in focus window when program started.

Basically the list was a set of objects, each containing just a checkbox and a multiline textbox. This left the user free to decide how they organise each entry.

As Sergei would say “Simples” :D
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 17 Apr 2019 07:37

William, you haven't caused any headaches -- just an interesting discussion in which people have discussed things they'd like to see in addition to your requirements -- hence we're talking about two separate solutions: A Simple To-Do List and something more complicated (which might be a link to an external programme, or might be some more complicate internal features).

You originally said

I would love a simple to-do list with heading, note, date and reminder.


Can you clarify what you meant by reminder? Is it something that pops up on the due date to remind you? Or something else?

a tick box to mark as complete


I don't think this has been mentioned before -- would a Status value do the job?

having the option to see a list when I open FH would be great


These three items are the ONLY elements of what we're calling a 'Simple To-Do List) that can't be satisfied by using existing functionality within FH (Notes and Named Lists). If you're happy with a Status value within a note rather than a checkbox, that's doable as well. And you can display a Named List alongside any other window (although you can't display it automatically at start-up, except alongside the records list). There is not way to generate a pop-up reminder.

If you can confirm that this would do what you want, I can start working on some detailed documentation for the Knowledge Base to replace Knowledge Base > Named Lists Approach; and in parallel look at constructing an associated Wish List request . There's already one at https://www.fhug.org.uk/wishlist/wldisp ... lwlref=371 about attaching Flags to all records (which would allow you to attach a Completed flag to a Note if implemented), so we're probably only looking at a Wish List request to show the Named Lists Pane on startup as an option.

The more complicated To-Do List requirement will need a bit more thinking through before it makes it to the Wish List.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 17 Apr 2019 09:34

Helen, how is it possible to 'display a Named List alongside any other window' as you suggest ?

If Tools > Preferences > Startup > Display the Record Window is chosen, then the Named Lists pane can be presented at startup of FH.
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 17 Apr 2019 09:40

Window > Tile Vertically
Show the Named List Pane.
Slide the separator between Record window and Named List Pane all the way to the left hiding the Record window.

Not great, but it's doable.

As you say, people who work from the Records List rather than the Focus window or diagrams can do it more easily.

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 17 Apr 2019 10:34

I though perhaps you meant that, but was not sure, as it suffers the following major problem.
The Records pane of the Records Window cannot be seen if the Named List hides it.
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 17 Apr 2019 10:39

If you want to see the Records list alongside another window and the Named List pane (and your screen is wide enough, you can adjust the slider - if your screen is big enough to make it usable (I have a 34" monitor, but others will not have that luxury).

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby WilliamFrier » 19 Apr 2019 22:28

Hi Helen,

Reminder- Bing bong pop up (would be good) but as I said in another post I could live without it. A way to bring up the named list you show quite easily would be fine.

Tick box- Basically anything that would show it as complete for example the ability to Change colour to red, something saying 100% complete, anything really that just makes it look different from the others. Looking at your named list just typing Complete at the beginning of a name would be alright for me. You were right I never mentioned it before it was only when I made my last post that I realised it was something I had missed Don't know what a Status value is, but if it is something like I mentioned above then it's good by me.

I see you say, you can't open it automatically at start up. Just being able to either click an icon or make a selection from a menu and something like the named list you show on your screen shot appearing would be again fine by me. I really just don't want to have to go through a whole rigmarole of click this, type that then take two steps sideways just to bring up a list :lol: . As I said in my another post I will maybe have to spend a little more time learning how FH works, because what was said originally that Notes and Named Lists did in the main do what I wanted seems to be right.

So my final question would be, are all named lists/notes easy to bring up on the screen? Off I go to work out how these Named lists and Notes work, they better be as easy as was mentioned earlier
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby ColeValleyGirl » 20 Apr 2019 08:02

David,

If you work from the record list, you can being up the Named List Pane via the Named Lists Pane button on the Menu, or the Lists > Named List Pane Menu option.

If you work from the Focus window or a diagram, it's a little more complicated -- you need to bring up the Named Lists Pane alongside the record list, hide the record list by sliding the pane separator all the way to the left and then use the Window> Tile vertically menu option to see the Name List pane alongside another window. Once you've done this one, opening FH, navigating to the record window and choosing Window > Tile Vertically seems to restore you last window set up.

I will be doing a set of instructions in the next few days, but in the meantime, if you find anything else you need guidance on, just shout. As well as Named Lists and Note records, you might want to look into something called Labelled Text :D

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby davidf » 21 Apr 2019 16:57

ColeValleyGirl wrote:davidf, I'm not ignoring you -- I'm just swamped with other stuff. Give me a few days to respond?

Me neither - I know the feeling! I did have a reply in draft but lost it when I got logged out and I think someone else had posted to this thread! Trying again (and regularly copying to a separate text editor!).
ColeValleyGirl wrote:One immediate question -- do you see a stand-alone calendaring/todo list application as something you would want Calico Pie to incorporate via a wishlist item

I agree with you that asking CP to develop new programs goes rather beyond FH wish lists! (although AS is a potential model for a means of such a development).

As others have said different people are viewing "simple" in different ways. We may be getting to the stage where we need to fork this discussion.
  1. Basic (subject of one discussion)
    1. The simplest solution is completely standalone and uses Notepad (you may choose to keep the txt file in the relevant project folder)
    2. Moving up from that you may chose to use a slightly more sophisticated program to edit your text file. Programming editors for instance often have the ability to "sort lines". If your todo list follows a standard format
      Col 1 - letter to indicate Status
      Col 3 - letter to indicate priority
      Col 5-15 - to hold date yyyy-mm-dd
      Col 17 onwards for description
      You can then sort by status and priority within status etc.
    3. Very similar but use a spreadsheet (Libre Calc - is freeware) so you can custom sort
    4. Very similar but ask CP to incorporate within FH a todo list (or any other data!) in a table (user definable columns) with tabular sorting (at project level, or at FH level?) But what does this buy us over a stand-alone freeware spreadsheet - bloatware that many will not use?
  2. Getting more sophisticated (which is where I think the OP is?) This might be discussed with (1) above.
    1. Reminders (How much functionality is required? "Remind me x weeks/days/hours before", "snooze" option", reminder form (email, screen alert, sound?), to run in background even when FH is not running?)
    2. Auto start (either on opening FH or on opening a project file - see italics above - already being discussed in this forum)
    3. Formating in response to status etc. (There is already an enhancement request to introduce formatting across text fields in FH)
  3. Getting clever with "work arounds" (within FH) - possibly we need separate discussions around enhancing each of these work arounds and "productionising them", so they appear as part of the delivered program. There are already a number of threads on these subjects. Does someone consolidate them or do we start anew specifically discussing how to improve the work-arounds as described in the knowledge base (to avoid the threads becoming a general to do list discussion!)
    1. Named Lists - do we look for an enhancement that makes Named Lists more "accessible" (than the big icon in the toolbar!) - "probably the most under used and misunderstood functions in ƒh". They do have the ability to hold a bit of "to do text" against any form of record and the report spans across all record types (Niggles about individuals, Agenda for visits to a repository, work to do when a particular source is next available, etc.). Users have to be happy going beyond the normal dialogs - working from the records list etc.
    2. Custom Attributes. This looks daunting but the Research Planner* is in effect an excellent "pre-cooked" "Custom Attributes" To Do list. However it only appears to work on individual records - but could also be made to work on family records (and if queries were made fact based the list could be consolidated?). Can this work on other records - which do not have "fact tabs" - CP enhancement needed. * Your development, Helen?
    3. Some other work around - possibly working on looking for particular text (e.g. [[TODO check this against Carlisle held records for Beaumont Parish ...]]) in any note field attached any-where. For monogamous notes, I would anticipate that this would not be too difficult; for shared polygamous notes we would need to think about which record or records they should reported against. [Edit: See later post 3 down - Jane T has a plug-in that does much of this!]
    4. Can we ask for an enhancement that "packages" an agreed developed work around within FH (facts, queries, reports) and makes them more directly accessible through a "Todo" menu item - so that it is easily found?
  4. ...Integration solutions - see below; probably yet another separate discussion
ColeValleyGirl wrote:... if we're looking for a integration with standalone product for to-do management, I suspect we should be discussing it in a thread in the General Usage Forum and then bring it back to Plugins or Wish List as appropriate?

Quite possibly, but for integration it is a matter of understanding the API and possibly asking for additional features to enable simple integration into (or better; "inter-working with"?) a number of different applications.
For instance,
  • many calendaring, project management, free text editors can hold hyperlinks.
  • My email client, Thunderbird, holds individual emails within its filesystem, so you cannot link to a file that just holds a specific email. But an add-in Thunderlink which allows you to right click on a specific email to create a hyperlink that you can then paste into another application.
  • Something similar could allow us to pick up a "link" to a specific record and then paste it into a task in our own chosen to do list manager. (Linking to a specific fact is probably going too far as I am not sure how you could specify a persistent link to a fact.)

This is not close integration (as you might integrate a stand-alone Purchasing System into a stand-alone Manufacturing System - been there got a very bloody tee-shirt!), but it goes a huge way to opening up all sorts of possibilities. Tight integration (both applications being able to read/write into each other is probably unnecessary - although AS does this.)

Within FH you need the ability to right-click on a record (in the record window - but why not elsewhere as well?) and then select "create pastable hyperlink" which creates a formatted link suitable for pasting into another editor. Alternatively there could be an icon which will do the same for a selected record.

A potential advantage of the later is that clicking the icon could also set a custom flag on the record to indicate that the record is subject to a to do item. Clicking it again unfortunately cannot cancel the flag as the record could be the subject of more than one "to do". (At the moment FH only allows you to set a flag on an Individual record.)

(The wish list item Ability to add URL hyperlinks to entries would appear to be requesting links in the opposite direction.)

Another example I have mooted is the ability of new functionality (plug-in?) within FH which could scan all notes for certain tags and turn them in to some formatted data which can be exported.

ColeValleyGirl wrote:Are you willing to lead that, [looking for a integration with standalone product for to-do management]

I am not sure of the protocols for forking a thread, but if this thread was forked, I would try to take a keen interest in any discussion of "inter-working" - or more close integration (provided we stick to user requirement level discussion - I am not familiar with the program structure of FH and at my age I don't think it would be a profitable use of my time to go into the guts of FH - even if CP were willing to disclose!)
ColeValleyGirl wrote:... while I look at how to satisfy needs using existing facilities? Worst case, it will give us as a Knowledgebase article ( as will my work on existing facilities -- I expect to update what exists].

[I will add that having written a Genealogy Research Manager and failed to find a market, avoiding double data entry (including links between items) for individuals families sources places addresses is essential but the links are vital! As is something that performs well.
Last edited by davidf on 22 Apr 2019 17:02, edited 3 times in total.

arthurk
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby arthurk » 22 Apr 2019 10:24

I've found this thread interesting, though devising a list is beyond me. This may well be my only contribution to the thread, but I thought I'd throw it in because David's comments about reminders and integration got me thinking.

I use a simple offline calendar program called UK's Kalender (UK is the writer's initials, and the spelling reflects his native German) - see http://www.ukrebs-software.de/ This enables me to set Reminders or To-Dos: Reminders can open a document or execute a command, either automatically or on a prompt; To-Dos can define tasks more precisely but have more subtle reminders and can't open associated documents automatically. (There are plenty of other calendar/reminder programs available, and I expect they offer similar functionality.)

After reading David's post it occurred to me that there's already something that could integrate with UK's Kalender: Jane's plug-in Create Individual Shortcut, which creates a small .cmd file. After trying this out, I can confirm that it appears to work: linking a reminder to the .cmd file as either a document or a command will open FH at the relevant person.

So what I'm wondering is whether Jane's plug-in could be amended so as to create a shortcut that opens FH at something like a Named List or a Shared Note, rather than an Individual. If I knew how to set about this I would have tried it, but I thought it was worth mentioning in case anyone else wants to try. After all that, it still might not be exactly what is being looked for in a to-do list, but there's a chance it might meet some people's needs.

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tatewise
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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby tatewise » 22 Apr 2019 11:55

On point of fact, Jane's Create Individual Shortcut Plugin exploits a hidden command line feature of FH.
It can open any Individual record via the Focus Window.
It can open any Individual or Family record via the Records Window that may be showing Named Lists.
No other record types or windows are supported currently.
Mike Tate ~ researching the Tate and Scott family history ~ tatewise ancestry

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Re: A simple to-do list

Postby davidf » 22 Apr 2019 15:58

A bit more digging and I have found Jane T's plug-in Find-Research-Notes!
It's not in the plug-in store but is on Jane's blog.

It does much of my previous musing (3 posts above) about being able to add a note with a custom tag anywhere and then being able to find it - using the standard FH "find" facility! Rather obvious, but like so much that is obvious, you have to have it pointed out!

Worth looking at. The output is rather limited - but the results pop up in a query window, so can be exported etc.


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