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Recurring Projects and Smart Add

hogan82 says:
This may not be news to anyone else, but I just did an experiment with e-mailing a task list to RTM for a recurring project to see if I could use the new Smart Add syntax to automatically populate the priority, date, tags and other fields. It worked like a charm. I now create task lists for recurring projects (e.g., quarterly patch updates) in Microsoft Word that include all the required task fields. Whenever the time comes to repeat the project, I just cut and paste from Word into an e-mail using my RTM import e-mail address and the name of the list I want it to go to as the subject and I'm good to go!

Not only does this make it easy to set up my task list each time I need to complete the recurring project; it forces me to think through the process carefully. I’m coming up with steps that I might have easily missed if I hadn’t thought it through. This is a great way to document a recurring process.

The only problem I’m running into at the moment is that certain e-mail systems/clients automatically word wrap at 72 characters and this causes RTM to treat each line of a long task as separate tasks. I found a website for submitting task lists so that this doesn’t happen, but am going to implement my own PHP form for security reasons. For those of you who are interested the submission site I found is here:

Below is a very simplified list to show what a recurring project list might look like in the body of your e-mail:

First task Monday #na #karen !1 @work
Second task Tuesday #na !3 @work
Third task next Friday #na !2 @home

Here’s RTM’s instructions on how to e-mail a list, although they haven’t updated it to use the Smart Add features:

The Smart Add syntax is here:
Posted at 6:36pm on September 23, 2009
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