Introduction to TaskDaddy

Download TaskDaddy

You can download the latest version of TaskDaddy from the DonationCoder forum.

Getting started with TaskDaddy

TaskDaddy takes a single line of input from you and turns it into an Outlook task without having to open the full interface of Outlook. It uses a simple syntax to input tasks quickly.If you type the task into TaskDaddy like this:

This is the Outlook task that gets created:

The idea is to put in a task quicker than you can within Outlook. Outlook does not need to be open.

 

Acknowledgments

TaskDaddy is a N.A.N.Y. 2011 challenge participant. For more details, visit DonationCoder. Encouragement and feedback from the hosts and participants of DonationCoder are gratefully acknowledged.

TaskDaddy was inspired by Bob Menke's Add Task Script.

Outlook object access uses a slightly altered version of the Outlook module (2010-01-13) written by Wooltown (see source code comments for details)

Command line processing uses the _OptParse module (031209) written by Stephen Podhajecki (eltorro).

Documentation uses part of the Web Application Icons Set owned by WebAppers.com and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Documentation was created using Microsoft Word®, Mouser’s Screenshot Captor, Toni Bennasar Obrador’s chmProcessor, GridinSoft’s CHM Decoder and the Notepad++ team’s Notepad++.

Creating a task

Creating a simple task

All task attributes are optional, so you can create a task that doesn’t have a category, body, due date, or priority.

Feed the goldfish

Using categories

You can specify a category using the @ symbol:

@Computer Vote in TaskDaddy feature request poll

You can specify multiple categories:

@Computer @P_TaskDaddy Vote in TaskDaddy feature request poll 

Another way to specify multiple categories is using the comma (,)symbol. Make sure there is no space before or after the comma:

@Computer,P_TaskDaddy Vote in TaskDaddy feature request poll

You can double the @ symbol if you want the @ to be part of the category name, as some people do when using David Allen’s GTD methodology.

@@Errand Pick up prescription

Warning.png

WARNING

TaskDaddy currently does not allow spaces in category names.

 

Using due dates

Date syntax is accepted according to the short date syntax of your Microsoft Windows® region, so New Year's Eve would be 12/31/2011 and 31/12/2011 depending on your region settings:

@@Computer Check N.A.N.Y. 2011 software releases at donationcoder.com #1/1/2011 

 

Using priorities

You can mark tasks high priority by preceding with ! or low priority by preceding with ?.

@@Errand !Pick up medicine
@@Home ?Eat Brussels sprouts

 

Using task bodies

You can specify a task body by preceding the text with a colon (:).

@@Home Dust ceiling fan :turn off fan first #1/31/2010

Sometimes the colon is optional:

@@Home Dust ceiling fan #1/31/2010 turn off fan first 

Since the due date “interrupts” the task subject, the task subject is considered complete and TaskDaddy deduces that any remaining unmarked text is the subject body, in spite of not including the colon. Task body deduction is the only time the order of the task attributes matters.

However, there is no harm in including the colon every time you specify a task body.

Task attribute order doesn’t matter so much

You can put task attributes such as subject, body, category, due date in any order. For example:

 @@Home Dust ceiling fan :turn off fan first #1/31/2010

This creates a task "Dust ceiling fan" with the category @Home, with a body of "Turn off fan first." If it is being created on a machine in the United States region, the due date will be set to January 31, 2010.

The following is equivalent:

:turn off fan first Dust ceiling fan #1/31/2010 @@Home

Command line interface

How do I use TaskDaddy from the command line?

TaskDaddy also has a command line interface. The syntax is similar to what you see in the GUI.

 Another way to use the command line interface is by adding the task syntax to a Windows shortcut target as shown below.

 

 In addition to task attributes, there are two available command line options:

 

·         /f filename.txt allows you to specify a text file containing tasks

 

·         /p forces GUI mode (this is the default anyway unless you are using the /f option)

 

Any command line arguments which are not options are combined into a single task. In practice, this means you can usually either use double quote characters or not, so that for example: 

taskdaddy "@@Home Recycle the bottles #6/2 :in the garage" /p

is the same as 

taskdaddy @@Home Recycle the bottles #6/2 :in the garage /p

 

Info.png

TIP

Options may begin with either the - character or the / character, so -f  and -p are equivalent to /f and /p.



Options may begin with either the - character or the / character, so -p and /p are equivalent.

How do I specify a text file containing tasks from the command line?

From the command line, you can also use a kind of file input interface. Suppose you have a file with a list of tasks in it:

@@Errand Pick up birthday cake
@@Errand Pick up balloon kit
@@Home Blow up balloons

 

If the list of tasks is saved in a file called tasklist.txt, the syntax

 taskdaddy /f tasklist.txt

can be used to add all three tasks at once.

 

Quotation marks on the command line

Any command line arguments which are not options are combined into a single task. In practice, this means you can usually either use double quote characters or not, so that for example:

taskdaddy "@@Home Recycle the bottles #6/2 :in the garage" /p

is the same as

taskdaddy @@Home Recycle the bottles #6/2 :in the garage /p