Wunderlist juggles tasks almost effortlessly

Spoiler alert! If you need a good task manager or to do list organizer, Wunderlist is among the best I’ve seen. It’s gorgeous and elegant and well worth the price of the download. Good enough for five stars at least.


I’ve written so much about my disdain for task management and to do lists that I’m sure readers don’t want to hear it again. The fact remains, however, that as much as I don’t like them there are plenty of people who do. How else can you explain vast number of available task managers and organizers?

Personally, the ideal task manager would be included with the iPad’s native calendar app. Inexplicably, it’s one of the few calendar apps I know of that doesn’t feature one. I might add inexcusably to inexplicably. In-calendar to do lists allow you to manage your appointments and tasks in the same location, which makes them far easier to work with.

Until Apple wakes up and corrects this enormous blunder, you might as well check out Wunderlist. I don’t usually review apps devoted to task management only, mainly because there are so many out there you are bound to stumble across a good one on your own. Wunderlist also happens to be the first one that actually piqued my interest enough to look more closely.

Wunderlist is a list manager and that’s it. If you need a full scale project manager with flow charts and cross-references you might need to stick with some of the more costly expert software developed for desk and lap top computers. But for keeping track of item-based check off lists, this will do the trick.

The interface is well-designed and makes the most of the iPad’s high resolution screen, primarily because you can add a variety of high quality background images. In fact, one of the few shortcomings of the app is that you can’t add your own images for backgrounds, but I’m sure they’ll fix that in the future.

Wunderlist provides a decent number of high resolution images and textures for the application background, making it a little more attractive than most task management apps. But the features are surprisingly rich and easy to access from the single-screen interface.

The interface is simple and elegant and every feature can be accessed from a single screen. The app is about as user friendly as they come, and the developers wisely provide the help pages as sample lists (which you could convert into your own notes if you wanted).

The left pane contains customizable categories for your lists. Should you need to switch an item to a different list, you can select the target list from a drop down menu in the item dialogue. Lists are fully editable and can be deleted with a swipe and tap.

The plus “+” button opens a simple dialogue that allows you to enter just about anything you need to help complete the tasks, from due dates to email reminders.

List items are handled exactly like the lists themselves. The plus “+” button opens a dialogue, allowing you to add notes, set priorities and due dates and even add email and push notice reminders.

The list pane contains a number of list filters in a menu at the bottom, allowing you to find just about any item easily. You can even keep track of finished tasks, which is a feature left out of many task managers.

The app doesn’t crash with normal use, so far as I have seen, and I was able to get lists set up and move items back and forth without resorting to the documentation. I only noticed a few small problems that I would fix. In addition to limiting your background image choices, Wunderlist only provides two priorities, yes and no. It would be nice to have more to choose from (high, medium, low, none).

My biggest complaint is that the editing dialogues don’t automatically save entries or changes, nor do they prompt you to save changes when you close them. This would be less of a problem if the dialogues didn’t close if you unintentionally touch the screen. As it is, you have to have the presence of mind to click “done” after every change in every new field, which is something people don’t always do in a hurry.

Well, okay, now that I think about it, the name “Wunderlist” is kind of pretentious. It has a Teutonic, goose-stepping grandiosity that could be toned down just a little. But, the developers are stuck with the name now, so there’s little point in belaboring the issue.

Other than that, the app delivers exactly as promised. It’s hard to fall in love with a task manager, but right now this would be the app I would go to on those rare occasions where I would use one.

Jenny Manytoes rates Wunderlist

Jenny Manytoes would make biscuits all over Wunderlist. It’s pretty, it’s clean and you can use it without having to think.

The Jenny Manytoes Rating System

Jenny Manytoes, our polydactyl cat

  • When Jenny makes biscuits on a product she thinks she’s in heaven.
  • When Jenny purrs over a product she’s very happy.
  • When Jenny naps next to a product it’s okay with her.
  • When Jenny bunches her tail she can live with a product, but she has higher expectations.
  • When Jenny leaves it in the litter box….I don’t think I need to explain this one.

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About Phillip T Stephens

Phillip T. Stephens disappeared into the Bermuda Triangle twenty years before he was born, creating a time travel paradox so confusing it remains unspoken between physicists and sci-fi writers to this day. Follow @stephens_pt
This entry was posted in 5 Stars - Biscuits, Organizers and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Wunderlist juggles tasks almost effortlessly

  1. Alex says:

    Hey,

    We are big fans of your site and really enjoyed your articles. Since you like Wunderlist we thought you might want to check out Memonic. Memonic is a free online note taking app that will make your life easier and save you hours a week. We believe we have the best web clipper out there, and a lot of other advantages over other note taking apps and productivity tools. And we think our new UI is gorgeous! But that’s just us. We would love to know what YOU think, Would you please check us out on http://www.memonic.com, download our brand new iPhone app (the iPad one to come very soon!) – and review us? 

    I’m happy to help with anything you need. 

    Thanks!

    Alex

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