Integrating Pocket with Todoist via IFTTT

Myles Gray asked me how I integrate Pocket with Todoist, after my How I use Todoist post, and the answer is very simple: IFTTT. If-This-Then-That lets you connect services, and create rules (or applets) that trigger based on events in those services, luckily both Todoist and Pocket are supported.

Now, there is a bit of overlap between how I use Pocket and Todoist, but I mainly use Pocket to keep track of links I want to either read later, or use as basis for blog posts.

Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash

I have two main IFTTT recipes that takes care of my integration between the two. Both of these use Pocket as the source, and Todoist as the target, I do not transfer anything from Todoist to Pocket.

IFFT Applets:

“If new item tagged read, then create a task in To Read”

Simply put, if I tag something with the tag read in Pocket, it gets added to my “To Read” sub-project in Todoist. This allows me to quickly move a Pocket item into Todoist as an action item, with the complete URL. It does not assign a label, nor does it set a priority—but it allows me to have a nice link list in Todoist with items I want read later. Of course, the Todoist Chrome extension allows me to do similar things, but only from the browser. Since I use IFTTT to add my Twitter likes to Pocket etc, it makes sense to have most of that collected in one place for further investigation.

“If new item tagged todo, then create a task in Inbox”

Similar to the one above, just with the todo tag instead. Naturally those links get placed in my “To Do” project instead. The difference here is that those that go into my To Do project, are things that I want to actively do something with (besides reading). That might be create a blog post based on something, send it to a client or coworker, or similar tasks.

Workflow

For me, Pocket works as a first repository of content I want to check out, and the content I want to do something further with, they live in Todoist. Once they are in Tooist, it’s trival to move them over to the correct projects and/or labels for organizing.

I have also set up a recurring task, with mobile alerts, to make sure I check my Pocket-lint at least once a week.

I’m sure there are other, and more fancy ways of doing this, or even improve on them. Please leave a comment if you do something similar, or something that I haven’t even thought of at all.

How I use Todoist

As I’ve mentioned before, I use Todoist to keep track of my personal to-do list. This is the first to-do manager I’ve been able to stick with, and I’ve been using it daily for well over 2 years now. In that two year period I’ve reorganised it a bit, but for the most part I’ve been able to keep to the main structure I initially created when setting it up the first time.

Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters

Projects

I try to keep my projects organised in main projects, with sub-projects as needed. All items I add should fall into one of these high-level projects.
I have the following main projects defined.

  • Work
  • Private
  • VMUG
  • vNinja

Most, of not all of these are self-explanatory. Anything Work related goes into Work, and anything Private naturally goes into Private. Most of these have sub-projects as well, like Work which has sub-projects for my employer, and sub-projects for each of my clients.

Labels

In addition to Projects, Todoist also features Labels than you can apply to a task, regardless of which project it is (thing of this as tags).

My current list of labels are:

  • @Waiting—Anything that I’m currently waiting for someone else to to something with before I can continue.
  • @Writing—Things I’m planning on writing.
  • @Someday—Something I plan on doing at some point, but haven’t set a deadline for.
  • @Read—Things I’m planning on reading.

Priorities

  • P1Important and urgent. Do these now.
  • P2Important but not urgent. Must have a due date. Move to P1 on or before due date.
  • P3Not important but urgent. Delegate to others, or change priority to P2 or P4.
  • P4Not important and not urgent. Only do if time permits. No due date.

This is based on the Eisenhower Method, and makes it easy to figure out which tasks I should prioritize at any given time. These tie in to the Todoist priorities as well, so I can use both filters

In addition this, I have the Todoist app on my phone, and run the Todoist extension in Chrome as well to capture web pages to my @Read list. This is also used in combination with Pocket. I have recurring tasks every day, with mobile notification, to make sure I check Todoist regularly. After all, I don’t want to lose my Todoist Karma!

So far I’ve completed 2850 tasks in Todoist, giving me the Karma level of Grandmaster!

For any GTD aficionados out there, you can clearly see that I don’t follow that structure. GTD in itself is probably awesome, if you’re able to stick with it. For me though, GTD takes to much of an effort in organising tasks and projects, so I’ve created a system that works for me.

How do you use your task manager to keep track of your todo items?

 

 

Do you ChangeLog?

In my work as a consultant I often have many small tasks to perform for customers, all while completing a bigger project. I have found that an easy way to keep track of all the little and big changes, is to create a ChangeLog. Normally ChangeLog’s are referenced in development projects, but it also sense to use it to track of your own, or your team members, changes to an infrastructure environment.

As for just about everything else, I use Markdown to make it easy to format and edit.

Example

Currently, I use the following format to keep track of changes done to a customer environment

# [customername]

## Changelog

### Completed
| Date | Task | By |
|-------------|---------------|-------|
|14.02.2015|ChangeLog created| Christian Mohn
|15.02.2015|Upgraded vCenter Operations Manager 5.8.3 Build 2076729 to 5.8.4 (Build 2199700)| CM
|16.02.2015|Updated *vCSA01* from 5.5.0.20000 Build 2063318 til 5.5.0.20400 (Build 2442330)| CM
|16.02.2015|Updated *esxi01* from 5.5.0 (Build 1623387) til 5.5.0 (Build 2456374) | CM
|16.02.2015|Updated *esxi02* from 5.5.0 (Build 1623387) til 5.5.0 (Build 2456374) | CM
|16.02.2015|Updated *esxi03* from 5.5.0 (Build 1623387) til 5.5.0 (Build 2456374) | CM

Once rendered as HTML, I get a nice list displaying all the recent changes.

Completed

Date Task By
14.02.2015 ChangeLog created CM
15.02.2015 Upgraded vCenter Operations Manager 5.8.3 Build 2076729 to 5.8.4 (Build 2199700) CM
16.02.2015 Updated vCSA01 from 5.5.0.20000 Build 2063318 til 5.5.0.20400 (Build 2442330) CM
16.02.2015 Updated esxi01 from 5.5.0 (Build 1623387) til 5.5.0 (Build 2456374) CM
16.02.2015 Updated esxi02 from 5.5.0 (Build 1623387) til 5.5.0 (Build 2456374) CM
16.02.2015 Updated esxi03 from 5.5.0 (Build 1623387) til 5.5.0 (Build 2456374) CM

As you can see this a quick and easy way to document changes. Since the markdown files are pure text files, they can easily be converted to other formats with Pandoc, or checked into a “code”-repository for easy retrieval.

Do you use a ChangeLog for your infrastructure, or how do you quickly document changes in your environment?