I promised to report back after a few weeks of using Remember the Milk as my to-do-list manager. That I’m writing this post is a testament its continued role in my life, as the “report back” reminder popped up yesterday in myriad places (on my Mac, in my email, in the Remember the Milk iPad app).
The application seems to be filling a useful space between the heavily-structured project management work that we manage in Trac with our clients, and the “you have a meeting with Bob at 2:00 p.m. on Monday” I track in a Google Calendar-iCal combo. I’ve been using it to help me remember things that otherwise I was juggling in the periphery of my mind, things I’d jotted notes down about, and things I never had a system to remember at all.
In the Getting Things Done religion they talk about the need for a “trusted system” to route the things that would otherwise pile up in your mind, your email inbox, your voicemail, and so on. I’ve been doing a pretty good job of keeping my email inbox at zero with Remember the Milk: rather than letting things languish there untended, I’ll create a task so that there’s a record, and then delete or archive the email.
In short, Remember the Milk, at least so far, is hitting a nice sweet spot of “simple enough that I’ll use it” and “complete enough that it lets me track what I need to track” without venturing into the woods of project managementy overkill.
My biggest issue with RTM is the mobile tools aren’t the most useful, unless you subscribe to their “Pro” service (a $25 annual fee, for pathetic email support and a fully functioning mobile app). I was an RTM member (and “Pro” subscriber for a few years) since they went into open beta but switched to NotifyMe (not as many features as RTM, but their mobile app has more features without the subscription fee) last year.
While $25 doesn’t seem like much per year, you’re really not getting much for it. RTM’s support has always been lacking; I had a support case open for 2 years with 2 or 3 responses and no resolution when I decided to make the switch. They don’t add many new features, even those heavily requested by pro members (eg. custom reminder times by task or task list). RTM Pro is actually a great service, but at $25 a year there are definitely better options.