|Technical :: Software > AddTask|
Windows command-line tools allowing you to quickly work with your Microsoft Outlook todo list.
Add a new task to your todo list - including setting categories, start and due dates, and priority.
Add additional notes to a task on your todo list.
View your To Do list, with options to filter and/or sort by category, due dates, priority, task name, and more.
Display more details about a task from the ListTasks list.
Mark a task (from the ListTasks list) as complete.
I loved Gina Trapani's Todo.txt series at Lifehacker.com - a series of articles describing how a todo list could be stored as a plain text file, using a series of scripts to manage it.
Apart from the obvious geek appeal, I particularly liked the idea of being able to throw stuff at my task list in a quick way. As someone who spends a lot of time at the command prompt, it means being able to add an entry to my task list when I think of it - without interrupting what I am doing. It means not needing to Alt-Tab to Microsoft Outlook, waiting for it to wake up, opening a new Form... all of which takes me away from what I was doing when I thought of whatever task needed capturing on my list.
But, I couldn't make the jump - I am too wedded to Microsoft Outlook. I like the custom views I've set up, I like the synchronisation with my PDA, I like the ability to send and receive assigned tasks... moving to plain text just wasn't an option.
I wrote these to bridge the gap - it lets me use the command line to quickly interact with my To Do list, while still using Outlook to store it, with all the benefits that brings.
Detailed instructions for use of all utilities contained in 'Help' within the programs. Try '--help'
I have MS Outlook 2002 running on Windows XP, so that is what AddTask was written for. I have no reason to believe that it wont work with other versions, but have never tried it so don't really know.
As with Outlook itself, performance will be much better with a shorter task list - regularly archiving completed tasks makes a big difference.
Seeing security warnings?
See this blog post for an explanation of what they mean, and a link to how they can be resolved.
Please send any suggestions, complaints, or bug reports to firstname.lastname@example.org
Credits and Disclaimers
The idea for command-line manipulation of a task list is obviously not mine. I have no idea whose it was, but I first saw it on lifehacker.com. I haven't seen a version for use with Microsoft Outlook before, but that's not to say that someone hasn't done it before me (and probably better!)
This was written with the brilliant 'Getting Things Done' by David Allen, in mind. References to categories that I make in addtask will be familiar to anyone who knows about GTD.
Finally, this may or may not work. I think it will work, but obviously the usual warnings apply - backup any data that you can't afford to lose as I can't offer anything other than my apologies if it ends up eating your Outlook data file.
Last updated: 18 Aug 2006
design: Dale Lane
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