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Action Lists and Listmaker: unremarkable

Daze End Software has recently released new versions of two iPhone apps: Action Lists, a GTD-oriented task manager, and Listmaker, a stripped down version of Action Lists for simpler listing and todo needs. Unfortunately, neither of them is really remarkable in any way.



Action Lists ($9.99) offers a simple interface that's very consistent with iPhone standards, but it seems to need more taps than other apps to do relatively simple editing tasks.  It has smart lists for projects, contexts, and for tasks marked as "waiting" and "someday," and it syncs with toodledo.com.  It is simple and appears quite robust.  It has a fast task entry mode, start dates and due dates, and a pretty good assortment of options for repeating tasks.

However, the options for setting due dates are not particularly flexible. There's no master action list, which means, for instance, if you're looking at tasks due today, you have to manually switch lists to see overdue tasks.  I find that amazingly annoying.  Horizons are not supported either, which means due tasks only show up on the day their due - you can't have the app give you any warning that a task is coming due.

And there's at least one bug I've found.  If you create a task, save it without assigning a due date, then edit it again, give it a due date and save it again, the badge count of how many tasks are due/outstanding isn't updated.

Listmaker ($4.99) lets one create nested lists (lists that contain other lists to arbitrary depth - which can be very useful) of items.  It too syncs with toodledo.com.  You can assign due dates to items, but it doesn't handle recurring tasks.  Since it shares much of its interface with Action Lists, it's very consistent with iPhone interface standards, and has the same issues, primarily there are too many taps required (I believe) to get things done.  Listmaker has a fast entry mode too, but one must save each item separately, as opposed to other apps, like Appigo ToDo, in which one can enter an item in fast entry mode with a single tap.  For what Listmaster does, I think Geetasks, at only $2.99, is actually much better.

In the end, while these apps seem quite robust and typical by iPhone standards, I find them unremarkable and rather pricey for what they do.  Quite frankly, I think you'd be better off using some other, cheaper apps, like Appigo ToDo and Geetasks.

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