WorkFlowy Tip: Dates For Easy Filtering

This is a guest post from Henry Livestroo. If you want to write a guest blog post, just email blog@workflowy.com with your idea.

Screenshot 2014-04-23 14.45.53

Frequently people complain about the lack of reminders within Workflowy. I use an easy workaround to deal with this in Workflowy. The idea is to use tags to create an milestone with a reminder date. I use the #d- tag to set the reminder and to differentiate from normal tags.

For example. If I need to make an report on the 24th of April I create a task Month Report Operations #d-2404. I put this task in my backlog folder.

Every day I Just click on the #d- tag and I see the all the actions with dates. Alternatively I search for #d-2404 to get the reminders only of the specific day

Comment from the WorkFlowy Team: For more readable dates, you can do something like #d-2014-04-22.

39 thoughts on “WorkFlowy Tip: Dates For Easy Filtering

  1. I would like to “age” my tasks. Is there a time-frame for releasing the API? I found the last modified date in the HTML, but it’s only there if I modified the bullet. I really want the creation timestamp.

    1. As a workaround: there are several instances where I want to date stamp text I write – in wfy & elsewhere. So I created a shortcut that picks up the system date. For any line in wfy where I want to know when I had the idea, picked up the task etc, I type the shortcut as the first entry on the line.

  2. Simple workaround… Thanks for sharing! Additionally, once you have isolated the tasks for today’s date, it would be easy to drag them all to a context with todays’s date (#d-2404) – since that will also show up in the search – so you have them grouped together.

  3. Love it! And made a little adjustment to it too.
    #d- for things I Need to Do such as @email #d-4-28
    #d_ for things I Did such as #email #d_04-25

    Workflowy shows when I last changed a note (Option/Hover) but I often need more than that on open tasks where I am playing email pingpong with someone or such.

    Note that I use @ for my actions such as @email and then use # when it is something I have done so @email changes to #email.

  4. I am currently playing around with the same idea and its a good one. Knowing workflowy though, they will probably step it up and make things even easier by having a date/reminders function. I bet they are already working on it right now.

  5. Following on from the ‘readable dates’ comment, another benefit of the format YYYY-MM-DD, is that you can limit results to a specific year (#d-2014), then a specific month (#d-2014-04) – in case you need to see more than just a specific day (#d-2014-04-28). Easy 🙂

  6. Why the #d-?
    why not just #2014-04-27to2014-05-03 for the week and #2014-04-29 etc for each day of the week?

    1. For me the #d- works as an identifier because I also use tags with numbers (for example to project numbers). To avoid confusion I wanted to add an unique ID

  7. I always just post ex: “29 Apr 2014” for something I need to see on a specific day, and I search my list by month and day regularly (ex: in Apr, I search “Apr”, then can narrow it down from there if needed).

    If it is a #deadline, I tag it as such, and check for those regularly as well. Similar to the posted suggestion and those in the comments, and it works well for me too.

  8. I don’t use WF so much for reminders yet – but a lot for different kinds of journaling.
    Are there any plans of making a keyboard shortcut to quickly insert current date?

    If not, does anybody have pointers to some EASY ways of establishing this on Windows? (I’d prefer something built in, that works on the mobile client/browser as well).

    1. I have a solution on Windows 7 but not tried on mobile or other windows.
      Install AutoHotKey
      Make this script
      save as today.ahk, or whatever you’d like, this is set so that Alt-t inserts the string “20140602”, I happen to like ISO format without hyphens.
      there are other date formats if you wish.

      #NoEnv ; Recommended for performance and compatibility with future AutoHotkey releases.
      SendMode Input ; Recommended for new scripts due to its superior speed and reliability.
      ; notes: the ! indicates use of Alt key

      !t::
      trailer := ” ”
      SendInput %A_YYYY%%A_MM%%A_DD%%trailer%
      return
      ; outputs “20140602 ” with a trailing space, but trailer could be another value

    1. WF can be a spectacular task manager. The very nature of getting an application of some sort to let you know that you have an overdue task (in the form of a notification or alert) means that you’re flying blind. You let your tasks sneak up on you. If you have a decent way of previewing upcoming tasks by date, at least even just your tasks for the next day, then overdue or due date features are kind of redundant, and quite honestly, a pain in the butt. Take a look at Kanban, for instance. One of the most productive tasks management systems with 2 main principles at its core: (1) Visualize your workflow, (2) Limit your work in progress. Believe it or not, WF is perfect for implementing the Kanban principles. Put on your thinking cap and you will have found a variety of ways to implement task management in WorkFlowy. If one has to rely solely on due date features in any app, it’s most likely that there is no intuitive feature that allows for the easy viewing of upcoming tasks by date. If not, just create a folder for each upcoming day within the next few weeks/ months in whatever app you’re using. Still not as visual as it could be, but a little more logical. Good luck with finding your ideal task tool 🙂

      1. Hey Amelchi,
        I have a template ready, in fact… And will be writing a blog post on it next week. Not only using WorkFlowy Kanban style for detailed tasks… but also using it with a “Calendar” section for all personal tasks. I like to call it “Kanban Calendar”. So far I’ve done a general post on the concept, plus two posts applying it in the Gingko and Kanbana apps. You can find those posts my blog: productivitymashup.com – and next week I’ll have a post up about WorkFlowy. I will share my template there. Until then…

    1. Hey Amelchi, here’s the post I promised – Kanban in WorkFlowy -http://www.productivitymashup.com/blog/2014/8/17/kanban-calendar-workflowy

  9. Would be better for workflowy to create a third soft of tag, like ‘#’ and ‘@’ for dates/times. Perhaps ‘\’? So I could date tag something ‘Get back to Deanna before \2014-06-05’. And later I could filter for all thing associated with that date.

    1. Just to point out that you can roll your own tags; they just won’t be quite as easy to use as # or @ tags. Right now, if you search for “\”, you’ll see all your dates filtered down. Assuming you don’t use backslash for anything else, you’ll only see your dates. The only thing you lose is the ability to click on the tag to trigger the filter operation. It would be nice if you could use “#\” to give your custom tag this capability, but it appears that punctuation aside from “-” and “_” is not permitted in # tags.

  10. I am a new user to WorkFlowy (this week), and I’m migrating from TomBoy which I’d used as a daily journal for the last several years.
    My hierarchy is years, months, days. I tag each #month and #day, so at any time, I can click on that tag, and it shows me those. Effectively it works like auto-collapsing to one level or another. And this way, it doesn’t matter how I format the date, since they all show sequentially. Note also that you can put #tags in the “added note” area (shift-Enter.)

  11. For the date format, using d-YYMMDD or d-MMDD instead of d-DDMM actually allows you to narrow your search.

    Use d-0612 for something due on 12 June
    Use d-0624 for something due on 24 June.

    Now, you can start searching for d-06 to see everything due in June before narrowing to specific date…

  12. Note: This only works if you do not have a literal “#d-” tag anywhere. The search seems to stop looking for parts of tags if it finds an exact match.

    This means you can’t make a way to easily click on a partial-tag search by just writing that partial tag in.

  13. I use an alternative approach:
    I use weeknumbers AND the numer oif the specific day
    For example: 3 march becomes:
    #d-10-03 (week 10, day 03)
    This makes it possible to see all your weekly deadlines first (by typing #d-10)
    and then narrow it down to today by adding 03
    Works great!

  14. Any chance of allowing an app like Sunrise Calendar access to a WorkFlowy API for sucking out some reminders… I dunno… maybe through access to specific shared lists? That, I am positive, will boost the WorkFlowy user base, and allow you guys to keep things simple on the WorkFlowy side… that is, unless you have something in the pipeline.

    Sunrise Calendar is really gaining crazy traction. They have long since pulled my reminders out of Evernote and the iOS native Reminders app. They’re expanding to integrate most of the well-known task management apps. I’d love to see that happen. One does not require a premium Sunrise Calendar subscription to integrate, if there even is such a thing, so there won’t be any extra expense on the part of WorkFlowy fans…

  15. I also use a #d tag! I have been thinking WF would establish a format that would be recognized as a date/time (i.e. 2015.04.15, 14:40, etc.) and they could add support for search operators and =. Wouldn’t that be a minimalist approach to dates? : )

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