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Shopping lists, again

nekodojo says:
I'm starting to use RTM for my to-do list and I've got things set up GTD-style (@work, @home, @errands, etc). So far this seems to be working OK. But, I haven't quite figured out a strategy for shopping lists.

I remember David Allen mentioned something about how he loves creating lists, lists of just anything, from shopping lists, to planning a trip, to organizing a banquet for 100, and keeping them handy even if they are not connected to any action. I think this would fit in with my RTM plan, but it would take some doing... I'm building a lot of intelligence and automation based on the assumption that everything on any list is either actionable, or waiting, or needs review.

I just thought of an idea, though... what about a list containing nothing but "completed" items? Like, my entire shopping list of everything I ever buy or might buy could be entered with @safeway tag, and then marked completed? Then when I figure something I need, I can find the item and hit "Uncomplete" to make it pending again, in the right context. Would this actually work, or do "completed" items get flushed after some period of time? (Arvid answered me: No RTM, never archives completed items. Completed tasks are kept forever)

I had also thought of using an "archived" list but a few tests suggest that my smart lists avoid everything on the archived list... This is probably good for "template lists" like vacation planning. This has the added bonus of not showing the archived list among my tabs... some of these will be things that I don't even want to see or think about for months until the right occasion, and then *boom* it's important and actionable. Maybe keeping the "template list" archived and then when I actually do throw that banquet, I either unarchive it, or just copy it to a new list.

Thoughts?
Posted at 3:02pm on August 10, 2008
superfancy says:
Cool idea
Posted 10 years ago
anne.durand says:
For the grocery list, I'm interested in feedback too because for now I just create a new list and add what I need, but it would be more useful if there were a list that had all and you could pick from it.

Just today I was thinking about this concerning packing lists - sort of your template list idea. I figured the best way would be to keep it on email and import it all in as a new list using the import command of one list with all the items.
Posted 10 years ago
(closed account) says:
I'm not sure if this is exactly what you need (it seems to be too simple) but here is my idea:
You add new items with tag lets say @grocerylist, when you buy sth from @grocerylist list you mark it as completed
Now, to find every thing you ever buy or might buy you should create SmartList like: tag:@grocerylist AND completedAfter:31/12/2006
just make sure the date is earlier than any task from the list
Posted 10 years ago
meares says:
is there any way to use ListPro (which I have one my windows mobile and which houses my grocery list) and RTM? I guess it's a common problem for me, I like aspects of more than one program and want to use them together.
Posted 10 years ago
(closed account) says:
I guess what we need is what other apps call a re-usable list. That would be nice.
Posted 10 years ago
jmkizer says:
Yeah, I wish there was a HandyShopper type function. I have some checklists in there including packing lists for when we go camping, etc. Some of the things I used HandyShopper for are easy to implement in RTM -- gift lists are pretty easy for example (although I had an I got it but didn't give it yet notation that I have to figure out in RTM).
Posted 10 years ago
finleyt says:
A re-usable list might be good, but maybe that can just be a txt. file.
Posted 10 years ago
fturner says:
@jmkizer:

You said the magic word. I'm *dying* for HandyShopper functionality on my iPhone, specifically the ability to have reusable lists for shopping and packing (my most used list by far). I haven't figured out a way to do this in RtM nor in the other apps I have on my iPhone yet.

Posted 10 years ago
davidbessler says:
The system I use, which works well for me, is this:

I have all items I have bought in the past, and will need again in the future, tagged as +groceries (I use +tagname to denote reusable list items). When I am about to go shopping, I pull up the smart list which queries tag:+groceries, and I check off all the items I want to buy. I select "duplicate task" from the pulldown, which thankfully keeps only one copy of the duplicated tasks checked. I then hit "m" to go into multi-edit mode, and change all the +groceries tags to just plain "groceries" for all the items I need to buy (remember, only the duplicated items are checked). The original reusable items stay tagged +groceries, and the one-time copies are tagged "groceries" and show up in my groceries smartlist (tag:groceries). Then I just complete the items from "groceries" as I buy them.

I call this the +bessler method of reusable listing.
Posted 10 years ago
(closed account) says:
wow, thanks davidbessler, great workaround!
RTM does allow for a great variety if you know how to use every resource!
Posted 10 years ago
raymond.bergmark Power Poster says:
Smart method David, really clever!
Posted 10 years ago
(closed account) says:
What list do you create the items in originally. I don't want them in my inbox and I don't want them to clutter up other lists. Otherwise, it sounds like a great system.

Posted 10 years ago
raymond.bergmark Power Poster says:
You could always create a list ¤ or | and hide that in other smart list searches. Using GreaseMonkey in Firefox you could even hide that list from appearing in the tabs.
Posted 10 years ago
davidbessler says:
Ahhh alkesq good question. I kind of ignore the inbox. I have a smartlist called "unprocessed" which searches for:

(list:Inbox OR due:never OR (isTagged:false) OR (isLocated:false) OR (NOT timeEstimate:">0 min")) AND (NOT tag:storage)

So, if I tag something with "storage", it keeps it out of my "unprocessed" box without requiring me to enter in any other info such as due date or time estimate, or location. I have ideas, philosophical ponderings, reusable lists etc ... tagged as storage, because they have no due dates, time estimates, or locations. It's kind of like the GTD "reference" tag or a "someday maybe" type thing.

Also, I use a real list called "." (takes up less tab space) where EVERYTHING goes after it's processed.
Posted 10 years ago
teebark says:
Yes, two lists seems the way to go. Groceries and @Groceries, where @ is what I use to designate smart lists. This is a great solution for recurring lists. like Travel. For example, I'll have passport as a task, but will only select it for international travel. I use +check for the tag, regardless of list, so it's easy to remember how to set up. This idea made my day--thanks, Rajjan.
Posted 10 years ago
raymond.bergmark Power Poster says:
I think davidbessler is the one to thank here ;-)
Posted 10 years ago
teebark says:
Oops, correct. Thanks, David.
Posted 10 years ago
tgb says:
The bessler method is great. My tweak is based on the fact that I try to minimize tags and use lists for projects. My tag for next action is na (reasonably intuitive for me). Rather than add two new tags: groceries and +groceries I create a smartlist with list:groceries AND tag:na. I create the na tags just like bessler does (which is a great hack to know about) and then complete items from the smartlist groceries. Thanks for the ideas.
Posted 10 years ago
frankathl says:
I use a Master Shopping List, which is a list of all items I have bought or am likely to buy in the future, created in my Inbox with a 'shopping' tag(this won't appeal to GTD advocates(I'm one myself!), but what the heck!). I also have a Shopping List tab where I create the actual shopping list I take to the store.
To create a specific shopping list, I browse the master list(click on @Shopping in the cloud) and select all items I think I need and move them to the Shopping List tab. Then I print it out and go shopping. Later, I may move the items back to the master list or, more likely than not, leave them there in readiness for the next shopping trip, when it saves me some time(just add/remove a few items).
Posted 10 years ago
jeff.rhine says:
Fantastic method David!
Posted 10 years ago
bazil749 says:
For reusable lists I (would like to) use completed tasks. I would then create a smart list for each "list" that would pull in tasks that are completed AND have a particular tag.

This works great on the PC, but especially on the phone. I can pull up that Smart List, check all the items I "need" then "uncomplete" them.

Now here's the ONLY problem with this: RTM refuses to sort completed tasks. This is totally killing me. RTM help; please put a sort on completed items.
Posted 9 years ago
jim.clauss says:
I tweaked the Bessler method:

- All of the reusable items are in a master list called "Shopping" [see also "frankathl" above]

- All of the reusable items are tagged with the name of the stores we normally shop: "costco", "petsmart", "target", etc.

- When you know you're going to a particular store, you go to the "Shopping" list, select an item tagged with that store and click on the tag (underlined, under the Tag tab on the right) to show only items for that store.

- Following the Bessler method, you select the items that you need and duplicate them.

- Instead of removing the + (on the tag name for the duplicated items), you add one. This seemed easier to remember...adding the "plus" is like "adding it to the new list".

- A smart list for each store, named +Store (again, tying the list name to the tag name) contains the newly duplicated items.

- I also like the Bessler method's generic "groceries" tag...but it would also be nice to add another tag for certain items that are less expensive in bulk or at a particular store, then apply the "store name list" method above.

Thanks to all for sharing your ideas...I love RTM!
Posted 9 years ago
debuck3 says:
I'm glad to find this here to refine my idea. I like to buy certain products at certain stores and do price comparisons to make sure I'm getting the best bang for my bucks. As a former grocery gamer, I'm an avid user of coupons too. So - here's my solution:

1. Have a list called "Shopping List"
1a - I use a naming convention of the following to make it easier to find the stuff I'm looking for:
Item (Brand) - Special Note
example: Tissues (Puffs) - with lotion
2. Tags denote which store had the best price (Krogers, Sams, Walmart, ...)
3. I put the price per unit in the notes for comparison later. (including any coupon that I found and if it was doubled/tripled)
4. I mark complete the stuff I've gotten, and go mark stuff incomplete that I need to get again.
5. I use smart lists to show me the shopping list for a particular store.

** I'm not sure I get why you'd want to keep duplicating and changing tags around. Seems like more work that way.
Posted 9 years ago
nekodojo says:
Thanks davidbessler for the cool suggestion, I like this approach to reusable lists. I'm going to give it a shot.

After my initial post, I tried the complete/uncomplete approach, but I found it a little clumsy, mostly for the reason bazil749 said: the completed ones are in "when completed" order, not in name order. Also, I'd like to be able to look back to see what I bought, and when, but if I "uncomplete" and complete again, I only get to see the most recent completion in the "completed" record.

debuck3: I like your suggestion about naming. I'm not a coupon kind of guy but there are some times when notes would be helpful. Here's a slight twist on that: All my grocery items are prefixed with a short store label and aisle number, so when I show up to the store, the list is sorted by aisle. That's probably overkill for people who get <20 things per trip, but I find it helps me "keep on track" so to speak. For example in the PW market, "pw.08.00 Canned kidney beans" is on aisle 8 and "pw.12.14 Cheddar, shredded" is probably somewhere between 12 and 14.
Posted 9 years ago
mkelk says:
Does anyone else here have a problem duplicating more than 25 tasks at once?

I have created a long list tagged packing, selected it using tag:packing, selected all and then tried duplicating, but RTM complains that it will not duplicate more than 25 tasks.
Posted 9 years ago
markfrman says:
Wow. I'm really not using RTM like I should be. I have to read up just to understand a few terms used in this thread. I'm hoping that after the initial time investment it will be worthwile lol.
Posted 9 years ago
markfrman says:
Yeah mkelk only 25 at a time. I've refined this down to a groceries list, misc items list and a shopping list. Adding all the "+" and smart lists actually adds more clutter and adds steps unnecessarily for me. Instead of one or two lists and 3-4 smart lists I just duplicate items from groceries and misc items into the shopping list, no typing involved. I use store tags and locations to let me know when I'm around a store. It would be cool if this plugged into Layar or Google Maps to let you know when a store you tagged is around. Maybe a income earner for RTM too.
Posted 8 years ago
jamesqwest says:
For shopping I have 3 lists: Costco, Wal-Mart and Hannaford.

-When I create a task, I include the store name. ex. Milk Hannaford or Peanuts Costco.
-I have smartlists that search Costco, Hannaford and Wal-Mart for incompletes.
-I have a smartlist that filters the inbox and removes those tasks that are shopping tasks.
-When I'm at the store I use my droid to pull it's list.
-I use Reqall, requall.com, so I can add items thru voice dication, to my tasks, including my shopping lists. I dial the 800 # and say "add" wait for the tone then say "milk costco" and it emails to RTM w/ "milk costco" in the subject and bam...it's on my costco smartlist.
Posted 8 years ago
jamesqwest says:
really, a list is a list and a task is an item in that list.
Posted 8 years ago
jans.roeber says:
I think the +bessler list is a great idea.

My problem is that I mostly prepare my shopping lists using my iPhone app.
Is there also a possibility to check, duplicate and move tasks like in the web app ?

If anyone could give me a hint, I'd appreciate that.

Thanks, Jans
Posted 8 years ago
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