Saying Toodledo to Remember the MilkMay20

Sunday, 20 May 2012 by haemoglobin

As you can probably tell from some of my blog posts, I have been using Remember the Milk (or RTM for short) to manage my to-do list tasks.

For many reasons that I am about to describe, I have stopped using Remember the Milk and have converted all of my tasks over to the popular and much better (in my opinion) Toodledo service instead.

Here are my reasons:

Remember the Milk Negatives: image_thumb[7]

    1. The reason I started looking into alternatives in the first place was due to the poor customer support and the seeming complete disregard RTM has for customer requests. My particular case was that I was in the process of writing a beautiful (and free) desktop client UI for managing RTM tasks in a clean way. I made a good start on this, and proceeded to send RTM a support email with a very simple question I needing answering about the API. I sent this a month ago now with still no reply to date. I followed up with a couple of very polite tweets to their twitter account a few days apart asking if they had received the message as this was a fairly urgent request for me…. I still have no response even to my tweets and I doubt that I ever will. I sent one more follow up email explaining my disappointment, doing the right thing by still allowing them more time for them to get back to me before I wrote anything publicly (still no response).

      What I find most disappointing by this is I am a long term paying (pro) customer, who are apparently entitled to priority support. One big frustration is that the twitter account is very active and actively sending tweets to people who casually mention @rememberthemilk (so they would have been received), but simply no answer to mine which were for actual questions I desperately needed answers to. I would have even been happy with a simple “we have received your email but the queue is currently long, give it a few more weeks sorry!” - but not even a peep which I find is disconcerting and just plain rude to be honest.
    2. There have also been very little updates to Remember the Milk for years, the common theme in the forums are people desperately asking for features such as subtasks, calendar pickers for dates, calendars views etc all of which seem to fall on deaf ears.
    3. Questionable ethic. An iPhone client Appigo Todo had their API access to RTM revoked without warning, affecting all of their users, here is what they said in the blog entry:
      Unfortunately for users of Todo, rather than contact us about the problem upfront, RTM chose to immediately disable the sync service available in Todo, Todo Lite, and Todo for iPad, causing immediate interruption to the service. We strongly feel that pulling the plug on users without warning is never the way to deal with a potential business relationship issue.

 

  • Toodledo Positives: image_thumb[5]
    1. Toodledo seem to listen to their users and make an effort to work on features that are important to people. Just have a look at this chart comparing the two services – Toodledo winning hands down with a whole lot of features that people have been asking about for years in remember the milk to no avail.
    2. The pro subscription is cheaper at $15 a year (compared to $25 for RTM). Toodledo’s pro subscription is also only really needed if you require the subtasks functionality and a few other bits. Likely you will be fine with a once off payment for the Toodledo iPhone app with no further charges and you will be set with a lot more features than RTM can ever provide.
      For RTM you really need the pro subscription because otherwise your mobile app will only be able to sync once every 24 hours, and you will not be able to receive any push notifications to your mobile for due tasks both of which come to be essential.
    3. The Toodledo API is much more open and free.
    4. With Toodledo extra features such as start date, status and context fields have simplified my workflow a lot. Things which were starting to become very complicated and troublesome to do in RTM became much cleaner to implement in Toodledo. It is a much more powerful platform, so to do the same thing in RTM you have to try and work around a lot of shortcomings. Subtasks can also potentially tidy things up quite a bit if you opt for a pro account.

Toodledo admittedly does have a slightly less friendly looking UI (based more on a functional grid), but as a power user it takes little time to learn and the benefits are well worth it. To be honest, the RTM interface isn’t perfect either, it’s not usable for a power user without the a bit better rtm 3rd party addon and I still found that the layout was buggy with the floating details panel often getting stuck in odd places.

I know who I will be making my UI for now instead Smile If you are a serious about maintaining those to-do lists and use them day in day out, I would definitely consider Toodledo over Remember the Milk and have been very pleased with it so far.

Hamish

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