Busy starts your day with your Most Important Task. Making the rest of your day easy.
App Store Rating: 3 .5/ 5 Stars (12 Reviews)
It’s confession time. I have a problem. I am obsessed with to-do list apps. I don’t mean that I have a slight problem. I mean that I have a full-blown addiction to downloading to-do list apps and I am looking for a support group.
One of my latest downloads, which we’re just going to refer to as “Busy”, comes to us from Lost Token Software LLC. What made me want to give this one a shot? The icon! It’s beautiful. Future cultures will build shrines to its beauty.
So, kudos to the designer of the icon (and the App interface as well) for giving us a real beauty of an App. But, unless you’re in Hollywood, you will need more than just a pretty face to gain success.
How does this one perform? Come. I will take you on a journey.
As I have already mentioned, this App is beautiful! It’s very clean and easy on the eyes. But, a to-do list has to get things done. Busy does this pretty well, but there were a few things about the App that were less pleasing than its aesthetics.
The opening tutorial is similar to many other to-do Apps. The steps to learning the App are listed as “Tasks” on the list that can be edited and deleted. The user interface was pretty self-explanatory with the assistance of the instructions. The App follows a workflow that will be pleasing to GTD fans (that is, fans of “Getting Things Done”, by David Allen).
If you are not familiar with David Allen’s book, then stop what you are doing right now. Go download it here right now. It is worth your time to read it.
You create tasks in your “Inbox” (Area for unsorted Tasks) to get them out of your head and on to paper (er… phone… App… whatever…). Then you manage the priority of the Tasks by moving them to one of the other boxes (“Important” and “Later”). Switching your Tasks between the various boxes is quite easy. It is a simple tap-and-hold gesture.
You can even filter the Tasks by assigning a “Project” to each one (similar to “Calendars” in the default Calendar App). It’s quite easy to apply the filters and then you can focus on one project at a time (Example: View “Important” Tasks from the “World Domination” project).
Additionally, Busy has alerts to help you get things done. However, the alerts in GTD are not designed to remind you to do each task. Rather, the alerts are more of a reminder to look at your list and assess what your next action needs to be. For some, this will be a flaw. Personally, I think it is better to look at your to-do list as a whole, rather than as individual items.
In essence, the implementation and gesture support is top-notch and very easy to use. Everything sounds wonderful, right? Well, it’s not! Despite the great user interface, there are a few glaring flaws.
The first is the limited amount of text space you are given. You are given roughly 30 characters that are visible from the list view. To put that in perspective, you can’t input a Task that says something like “Ask teacher if there’s anything I can do to raise my grade ;)”.
You can see the full Task by scrolling if you click on it and view the “Task Details”, but there is no indication on the screen that you can scroll. I had to figure that out on my own.
Finally, there are the projects. While they’re a great idea, the implementation is clunky. To assign a project, you have to create a Task and then go into the Task Details to assign a project. There is no way to do this as part of the Task creation. That’s a pretty severe user interface flaw, if you want all of the features to be usable.
App Store Junkie Rating
The App Store ratings were dead on with this one. The App is not terrible. It’s gorgeous (and one cannot discount the significance of beauty in impairing our judgement).
In fact, with a few tweaks, I could see this App becoming a major player in my workflow. Unfortunately, the small Task display along with the clunky Project implementation makes this App less useful. It’s great for a short list of household tasks, but it falls short when handling larger workflows (project management, web design, etc).
You can download the app for FREE here.