Syncing Areas of Responsibility and More…

For Things users who sync with their iPhone or iPod touch, the ability to sync Areas of Responsibility has been the most requested feature. We are happy to announce that Things 1.3.5 for iPhone and iPod touch now supports that. Tasks on your iPhone or iPod touch will now be nicely categorized into Areas just as they are on your Mac. In version 1.3.5, however, it is not yet possible to add new Areas.

The overarching goal for version 1.3.5 was to significantly improve sync reliability and experience. But we also added important general improvements. The most important one being Things’ ability to more accurately return back to the last screen that was shown before you quit the application. This might seem like a little improvement, but it is actually quite significant, since it solves the problem of potentially losing vital text when a phone call comes in. Previously, when you were typing away on a note and a phone call came in, you lost the recent changes of that note. Now, after you open Things again, it will return to the editing screen with your latest changes waiting for you.

When returning back to Things, it doesn’t always make sense to show the last screen you were using before you exited. You might have forgotten exactly what you did last time. Instead of making the user always navigate back through potentially deep hierarchies, we tried to find a middle ground. For example, let’s consider a scenario where a user is managing tags while editing a to-do, and then quits the app. In such a case, we do not return to the Manage Tags screen, but instead show the to-do the user was editing before.

Most of the time and effort we spent on version 1.3.5 went into analyzing user contributed bug reports, doing our own extensive testing, and obviously fixing all of the issues we were able to reproduce. This involved both Things 1.1 and Things touch 1.3.5. If you are syncing with your iPhone or iPod touch, please make sure you use the latest version of both apps to get all of the benefits of the improved sync engine.

We strongly encourage every user who still experiences sync issues to contact technical support. The best way to do this is by selecting the “Provide Things Feedback…” menu item from Things’ main menu. This will open our new unified support form in your browser with version information already filled in for you.

Speaking of technical support… Let me take this opportunity to officially thank our new support hero, Mark Simoneau. He did an awesome job before as one of our forum moderators and we are very happy to have him helping us with our increased support load. He will be assisting Oli and Michael who worked crazy hours to answer all your questions.

13 Comments

  1. Nathan Gilmer May 11, 2009

    So excited about this. Thanks guys.

  2. David May 12, 2009

    On the iPhone, we see one link to all Projects and a list of all Areas. We’d like to a way to show a short list of active/current projects on the main screen w/o having to click to the projects. And… it might also be handy to show only some select Areas and have a link to all Areas as there is already for all Projects.

    Thanks,
    David

  3. Jason Lazzara May 12, 2009

    I have to laugh a little because earlier today I sent Cultured Code an email asking when Areas of Responsibility would be released. This is much better than the answer I was expecting. Thanks!!!

  4. Cavell L. Blood May 12, 2009

    I’m really glad to see this improvement with syncing and also that area’s is now on TT. Thank you for all your hard work!

  5. Marcel May 12, 2009

    Great, thanks a lot!

  6. AlainJ May 12, 2009

    Keep up the good job guys. Thanks.

  7. Paul Wenzel May 12, 2009

    The addition of Areas of Responsibility to Things iPhone is completely awesome! Thanks for your continued excellent support of Things.

  8. Mike May 12, 2009

    Hi guys, awesome work on the new update. I would love to see repeating tasks feature in the next update for Things touch.

  9. Jason May 12, 2009

    Things (touch) is now significantly slower for me, especially when loading the app. Anyone else notice this?

  10. Barak Yedidia May 12, 2009

    Thanks!

  11. Jürgen May 13, 2009

    @Jason: We are currently doing performance analysis with some particularly large user libraries. We were already able to make a few improvements. If you like to discuss your case in more detail, then please contact technical support.

  12. The Teahead May 13, 2009

    I love this app.

  13. Lee May 14, 2009

    Hey, thanks for the Areas sync. A1.