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Display the lists vertically on the left (instead of in tabs)

nick.hoffman Pro says:

I would LOVE to have the option in the web interface of my lists to be alphabetically sorted vertically on the left side of the screen vs. tabbed in the header. This suggestion was also brought up a year ago (

I have many lists, that are often changing and group sections alphabetically. It is time consuming for your eyes to scroll left / right and up / down to find the right list in alphabetical order. As soon as I am familiar with its location, a list is removed or renamed and I can't quickly find the lists that I want to access.

I know a vertical list would / could involve scrolling - hence why an option to have both / either setup would be ideal depending on the person. It would make my experience so much better and deepen my already intense love for RTM.

Anyone else think the same or have other ideas on organizing their list view?

Posted at 6:46pm on August 13, 2010

larrinski Pro says:

I concur! I have come from Nozbe and the Tabbed look is not easy on the eyes. I also want collapsable lists, so I can have a couple areas of focus(Personal/Work) and simplify the interface.

The greasemonkey userscript is fine when I am using Firefox at home, but at work I use IE 8(ugh), and obviously it is not useful there...

I recommend the developers look to the new Nirvanahq GTD app for some interface ideas...

Posted 3 years ago

pattern86 Pro says:

I agree!

Posted 3 years ago

sako73 Pro says:

I also vote that the development team devote time to reworking the Tabs interface. An option to list vertically would be one nice feature. Another idea I would like would be to have some way of grouping tabs so I could collapse the group.

Posted 3 years ago

the.jalal Pro says:

And... it would be nice to select a color for the tab (I'm thinking here of saved searches, which I use a lot).

Posted 3 years ago

malisabright says:


Posted 3 years ago

thomas.serio Pro says:

There's a userscript (and chrome extension) called "A Bit Better RTM" that does this, though I'd love to see them officially adopt that interface...

Posted 3 years ago

kmninbox says:

please yes

i also would like to have the lists listed on the side
custom color tabs would be great
perhaps default lists, then nonsmart lists, then smart lists
also NEED to have option or ability to quickly add/edit/delete any list smartlists included, directly from the task go back and forth to the settings page is horribly inconvenient!

i am soo wanting rtm to be the last thing, the one and only task manager i'll ever have to use again but imo rtm is really almost the best but needs some interface changes quick

Posted 3 years ago

bigho Pro says:


Posted 3 years ago

tomrenfrodbg says:

I'm voting in support of this, although listing the tabs on the left can be very problematic in terms of page layout, especially if you like long list names (I do). An alternative which would work just as well for me is a list chooser (drop down box) in place of the tab block since only one list can be shown at a time, and I don't need to see all of the lists at once all the time. Combining this with the list ordering request, it could also be the top 3 or 4 tabs by user-determined sort order, then a chooser for the rest of the lists.

Posted 3 years ago

tonysutherland says:

Moving the list of lists to the left edge of the display page would make RTM look rather like one of those tabbed notebooks (physical) that can be purchased from any stationery store. Apart from having to remember to make each list have a unique set of the first 5 or 6 characters or so (which should not be too difficult), I think this is a good idea (and could be made to look rather cute - especially with coloured tabs for each different list).

Posted 3 years ago

mats.kirknes Pro says:

All lists to the left, hide empty lists.

Once you start really using RTM, you will get a few lists to stay on top and ahead. The tabs on top are not a very user friendly solution (unless you have a mere 2-3 lists).

Posted 3 years ago

trois.singes says:

As thomas.serio said, don't forget to use "A Bit Better RTM" extension (for Chrome and Firefox). It modifies RTM website in a very friendly manner, with lists on the left instead of above.

Posted 3 years ago

andcam says:

Another user of "A Bit Better RTM". The list layout is much neater than the tabbed interface when you have a fairly large number of lists. As soon as you have more than 1 row of tabs in the native RTM interface it becomes ugly and unintuitive to me.

Posted 3 years ago

ragmana says:

The "A Bit Better RTM" script is perfect where it works, but the person maintaing it does not have the hardware (i.e., a Mac) to write a version that works with webkit-based browsers. (The Chrome version works because Chrome implemented Greasemonkey compatibility.)

It would be nice to see lists move to the left as on option, if not the new default.

Posted 3 years ago

jeremy.richardson Pro says:

Showing tabs/folders on the left would take more advantage of modern wide-screen monitors.

The iPad app is a wonderful example of using the horizontal real-estate on the screen to present dense, but visually navigable information. On a 1920x1200 Monitor, the RTM web app is much more difficult to navigate than my iPad. I think the iPad shows more information and is quicker to navigate.

I'd like to see more information on the right of the task list as well.

Posted 3 years ago

jstrauss says:

List on the left would be great!
Auto-hide empty lists is a great idea too.
Drag and drop reordering, nesting and hiding would be a nice touch and eliminate the need to do everything on the settings page.

All of these things would make me use MORE smart-lists (the tabs are too hard to use with 10+ lists) and if I used more smart-lists (projects for example) it would help ease the pain of RTM's lack of subtasks... a little.

Posted 2 years ago

klagreca says:

column list, plus color coding, would be helpful in organization.

Posted 2 years ago

lukas.plewniak says:

I am with you all on this. Most web apps I found on the internet have organiced the lists vertically either on the left or on the right. I have currently over 20 lists (GTD: one list for everything that takes more than 2 steps) and its very difficult to oversee them all as tabs.

Posted 2 years ago

jdtax Pro says:


Posted 2 years ago

akochnev says:

I always have to use the "A bit better RTM" extension on Firefox and Chrome to make this happen. The basic "tabs at the top" approach breaks down very quickly after I have more than a dozen lists.

Posted 2 years ago

ornthalas says:

Displaying the list on the left would be good.
Displaying it as a tree would be better!

Take the firefos plugin "Tree Style Tabs" as an example.
I would use for example 4 lists:
- Todo (with everything inside)
-Todo today
-Todo tomorrow
-Todo this week

The tree styling makes it more readable.

Posted 2 years ago

ornthalas says:

(well, the website removes the blanks on the beginning of lines, the 3 last items were meant to be tabbed ;) )

Posted 2 years ago

stefanocayre says:

+1 on this!

Posted 2 years ago

ameano says:

New to RTM, but already love the functionality. The UI needs some serious work though, +1 for this. Vertical nav bars just "make sense".

Posted 2 years ago

curtlytle Pro says:

Also, customize the colors of the tabs would be nice!

Posted 2 years ago

harussell says:

+1 !

Posted 2 years ago

hansekaiser says:

This would be greate! It works on the iPad and should work on the web as well.

Posted 2 years ago

rrrick Pro says:

I also vote for left hand organization AND / OR customized colors!

Posted 2 years ago

ronal.guerrero says:


Posted 2 years ago

slagod says:


Web app is so outdated comparing to iPad/iPhone.

Posted 1 year ago

stenkate Pro says:


Posted 1 year ago

mgercke says:

I'm using "A Bit Better RTM", but of course it would be great if it was integrated.

Posted 1 year ago

pquadrat says:

@mgercke: Thank you for the hint. Solves it!

Posted 1 year ago

apalomar says:

also making list a simpler tasks is needed. Sucks to go to settings to make a list

Posted 1 year ago

sion.lanini says:

left hand lists please - put it into a separate frame to avoid lots of scrolling if you have lots of lists


Posted 1 year ago

thinkinprojects Pro says:

I'm using A bit better RTM extension in Chrome browser. It will move the tabs to a separate box and turn them into a neat list. Well worth checking it out.

Posted 1 year ago

seanutria says:

I would like to have a consistent appearance across both FireFox and IE. The single most frustrating inconsistency is the cluttered list tabs across the top. Why can't this be the standard UI, or at least an option? It seems like a lot of people use extensions to create this view. Does anyone prefer the tabs across the top?

Posted 1 year ago

agentcunningham says:

I agree that having the lists in a column on the left would be a better interface. In keeping with the Android app, I would love to see counts as well! Thanks!

Posted 1 year ago

bryansells Pro says:


Posted 1 year ago

relevart Pro says:

Maybe something like the Android Tablet app would be nice on the web too. Just optimized for mouse and keyboard and not touch :)

Posted 1 year ago

vladikin.m Pro says:


Posted 12 months ago

james.scerbo says:

+2. Definitely. I have about 30 projects each with their own list. Having them on the left would 'open up the screen' to the actual tasks underlying the list.

Posted 11 months ago

jon.r.rose Pro says:


Posted 9 months ago

caroline.dunne Pro says:


I want to run lots of smart llsts but it's difficult to view them in the tabs.

Posted 9 months ago

intheair Pro says:


Posted 9 months ago

stenkate Pro says:

Love this idea. For users with a screen bigger than 14", the extension 'a bit better rtm' does the trick (for chrome and firefox).

Posted 9 months ago

aster69 says:

I totally agree!

Posted 8 months ago

derin.korman says:

You can use a bit better RTM extension to move the tabs to the side, I also made a userstyle to revamp the whole thing here:

Posted 5 months ago

admirau Pro says:

+1 Another user of "A Bit Better RTM".

Posted 4 months ago

john.farrell Pro says:

I would love a native option for this, because I've been getting script timeouts with the A Bit Better RTM userscript for several months on Firefox for Mac. I now keep a Chrome window open to view my lists in the left-side layout.

Posted 12 weeks ago

vamshikk Pro says:

'a bit better rtm' plugin for Chrome and Firefox adds this functionality and much more.

I would still like this to be part of the standard interface though.

Posted 7 weeks ago

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