Getting Things Done with Nozbe Productivity Blog

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Nozbe 2.0 Beta 4 almost there - update from our dev team

Our fantastic beta-testers are working really hard finding and reporting issues in Nozbe 2.0 Beta v.3 Believe it or not but hundreds of people send us regular feedback and comments every single day. At the same time, Nozbe programming ninjas debug all they can and as fast as it is only possible. Such a nice cooperation will let us deliver 4th beta version which will be ready on Friday, August, 8.

OneNozbe Beta 3 development

What's cooking, doc? :-)

Here is a list of improvements, functions and fixes in the upcoming Nozbe 2.0 beta:

  • Settings view where you will find some cool new features like changing the app language or managing 3rd party apps integration. All in one view!
  • Performance. We've optimized some animations of the app to make it even smoother
  • You won't be able to continue Chinese lessons which means that the famous Chinese bug has been fixed
  • New Comments view improvements. We've added button to mark all comment as read as well as some filters to let users determine if they want to have the tasks with read comments disappear from the view immediately or not

If the tech-guys minimize the amount of sleep even more and skip some lunches (none of them smokes so they can't skip cigarette breaks), we will be able to deliver also these:

  • Evernote and Dropbox integration. We're redesigning architecture of these integrations to make them work better with Nozbe 2.0
  • Calendar performance and bug fixes. Calendar is always hard topic in this kind of app. We are fixing the most annoying bugs in this view and improving performance.

These are quite complicated issues though, so it might be that you will see them in beta 5... we'll see.

Thank you!

The whole Nozbe team is really moved. We keep receiving new requests from people willing to join the beta-testing team and those who are already a part of it are working really hard and deliver in-depth feedback. We can't stop saying thank you for testing Nozbe 2.0 and helping us build the best suite of productivity apps in the world :)

Follow Nozbe 2.0 on Instagram

We're posting regular updates of our Nozbe 2.0 development on a dedicated Instagram channel - if you're curious and want to be up-to-date with all the updates, tune in to follow "@nozbe" on Instagram and let us know what you think!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Nozbe 2.0 BETA 3 - it is time to also go mobile

Nozbe 2.0 Beta has been available for 3 weeks. We received great feedback from you, our fantastic users and today we're shipping Beta 3 not only for the Mac, Windows and Linux... but also for iPhone, iPad and Android!

Thanks everyone for signing up for our mobile beta! Wow!

We were totally blown away! Close to 1000 of our most passionate Nozbe users signed up for our Nozbe iOS/Android beta. We were totally overwhelmed by the response. Thank you!

Now here's how we're going to roll out Nozbe beta:

iOS beta. Testflight and a project in Nozbe

The amount of you who registered is so much higher than we expected and we are very grateful for this. Unfortunately Apple has its own limits as it comes to the number of beta testers so we had to draw users for iOS beta testing. We would love to be able to invite everyone!

All chosen users will receive email and an invitation to Nozbe project where they will be able to report bugs and provide feedback. This way we want to communicate with our beta testers.

Android. Google Groups and Play Store

As on the Android platform there are no limitations as far as the number of beta testers is concerned, we've sent an email to all the registered beta testers with an invitation to a google group. All the users registered in this group will have access to beta. It will also be our main communication channel for providing feedback.

Desktop. Mac, Windows and Linux - get them now

With the new beta 3 out, we have new versions of our desktop apps for you to, as always, get them from our beta web page.

What's new in Beta3?

Glad you asked. Check out full Release notes on our test blog

Not chosen for beta? You can still test on iOS and Android in your browser!

Just point your mobile browser to and you'll be able to test our new mobile experience on your mobile device. Our new Nozbe 2.0 app is completely responsive and should work perfectly on the desktop as well as on your mobile device. Check it out!

Thank you for great feedback and testimonials

Once again we want to emphasize how grateful we are for your feedback regarding Nozbe 2.0 BETA. And all the great testimonials you provided. Wow! We will try to use most of them on our new Nozbe page. Reading each and every one of them was so uplifting!

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Again, thank you for testing our beta application and for helping us build the best suite of productivity apps in the world. Together with your amazing support we believe we can make it happen and get everyone in the world a little more organized.

New to our Nozbe beta program?

Check out Michael's video where he's introducing you to Nozbe 2.0, codenamed "One Nozbe" - at the end of the video he shows the iPhone and iPad experience, too:


Thank you!

- post written by Rafal, Nozbe Product Manager :-)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Priority tasks instead of Next Actions... and more changes in Nozbe 2.0 beta - why? how?... and why now?

Over 2000 most active Nozbe users have downloaded Nozbe 2.0 beta (for Mac, Windows and Linux) to date. Thank you!

If you got it, you might have noticed not only significant UI improvements but also some other, more subtle, but also very important changes in the way we're naming things in Nozbe.

Inspired by an amazing book and methodology...

Back in 2007, when I first launched Nozbe, it was a web app inspired heavily by David Allen's GTD® (Getting Things Done®) methodology. Well, in the beginning, I only implemented three aspects of it: Next Actions, Projects and Contexts... but I used David's wording as much as I could. Like you wouldn't add a task to your project but you would add an "action".

While it hadn't been such a big deal, still we had been getting many emails by confused customers: why we'd name a task an "action" while the word "task" is a lot more common one for calling well... a task. This is where we had started thinking about changing some of the naming in Nozbe:

Actions to Tasks

When three years after the launch we started translating Nozbe to different languages like Polish, Spanish, German and Japanese, we noticed that while in English the action vs task argument is not such a big deal... especially among GTD® enthusiasts... in all the other languages the word "action" has little to do with "task". In Japanese these words are written in totally different alphabets even: "Action" in Katakana (like all foreign words) and "Kodo" (task) in Kanji (native Chinese-Japanese alphabet).

That's why, back in 2010 when we redesigned Nozbe, we went with "task" instead of "action" to make our system more comprehensible to a wider audience. Now, that we're planning to launch more local language versions of Nozbe, we're very confident with our choice.

Next Actions vs Priority tasks

I love the concept of "Next Actions" in GTD® and I think it's one of the keys to success of this system. However, if we already don't have "actions" in Nozbe but "tasks", why do we call the high-priority tasks from each of your projects "next actions"? We're not consistent here.

They should be called "next tasks" or "what to do next"... so we decided to try "Priority tasks" as the word "priority" makes sense among wider audiences - if a task has a high priority it needs to be dealt with as soon as possible, i.e. it's in fact your next action, right?

Contexts vs Categories

While the word "context" makes total sense for what it is... people really get confused about using it in reference to a task. For the 7 years of running Nozbe, I've been often asked: what is a context? how do I define contexts? why should I use contexts? context of what...?

The word "category" has a wider meaning. People get it more easily. Especially when I tell them: "by applying contexts you're effectively categorizing your tasks..." - and again, it's hard to use this word in any other language than English. Category is universally understood... and makes more sense to more people.

Projects vs Lists

At some point I even thought about renaming "Projects" to "Lists". Why? For two reasons:

  • Projects don't need to be big... yet people think they are. Many Nozbe customers have a problem calling a series of 5 simple tasks a project... They think a project needs to be something really significant - a huge undertaking...
  • A project can be just a list of unrelated tasks. Again, I use Nozbe like this all of the time. I have a project called "private tasks" where I put all of the tasks that are not directly related to any of my active projects but belong in my private life. When I explain this to people, they say they're not comfortable calling such a list of tasks a "Project" and ask for a different solution.

Ultimately we didn't change the name.

Although we have the concerns listed above, I still believe the name "Project" is very active. And Nozbe is not a task manager, it's a task do-er. You're supposed to get things done with Nozbe and creating "projects" for this purpose makes more sense than just "lists".

No. We're not moving away from GTD®, we're brining it closer to the people... by not calling it GTD®

That's right. I believe our goal of teaching people great productivity habits through an amazing Nozbe user interface is still our top priority. This is what we stand for. This is why we're re-designing Nozbe right now. This is why we're adding more functionality while removing clutter.

Our job at Nozbe is to empower people to learn great productivity principles and helping teams work more effectively together by learning to communicate through tasks.

Actually not that many people know GTD®. Both inside and outside of the US. And while the David Allen Company is expanding its reach internationally, I'm sure we have a shot at doing it a lot faster by introducing our software to even more people all over the world. And we want everyone to learn great productivity habits fast. That's why I also recorded my 10-steps to Ultimate Productivity course in all the languages I know.

We want people to learn great productivity habits and techniques. Not just GTD®.

New names in Nozbe beta

To see if what I write above makes sense, we decided to change these names in Nozbe beta and leave them "as is" in Nozbe 1.9... and there was no outrage. Some folks asked about the change, but most didn't notice and others applauded us for this.

To me, it's a great indication that we're doing something right here. After all, Nozbe beta is being downloaded by our power users, people who presumably know GTD® and have been following Getting Things Done® for a while now. And apparently the great majority don't mind the new names :-)

Final thoughts

I also don't want to put up ® signs all over Nozbe site. Nozbe is actually a registered trademark but I never write Nozbe® although I could.

Both GTD® and Getting Things Done® are registered trademarks of the David Allen company. Nozbe is not affiliated in any way with them (other than by thanking them for brining this methodology to the world!). David Allen is still my top productivity guru and a great friend. We met several times and I hope we'll soon meet again.

Nozbe is an app that helps people get everything done and empowers teams to communicate effectively through tasks.

That's what we stand for. New names/old names... our mission stays the same. We want everyone in the world to get organized and more productive!

What do you think? Let me know in the comments!

- post written by Michael Sliwinski, CEO and founder of Nozbe

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Nozbe 2.0 BETA 2 ready for testing on Windows, Mac and Linux

2 weeks ago we introduced Nozbe 2.0 beta for desktop and we received great feedback from all of you - our fantastic Nozbe users! Thank you so much! Today we are asking for even more feedback by presenting you the newest version BETA 2 of Nozbe 2.0 for Mac, Windows and Linux platforms.

P.S. Remember that you can still sign up for iOS/Android beta which will start later this month.

Your feedback helps us shape Nozbe's future

We really enjoyed reading your comments about Nozbe 2.0 beta. What you liked, what not so much, what was missing in the app, etc. It was very important to us because very often only you can point out things we can improve. From what we've gotten so far we can see we are going in the right direction on the path to providing you with the greatest productivity app ever. This time around we will be more than happy to receive more feedback about beta 2.

What's new in Beta 2?

In this version we added some cool stuff and fixed many bugs reported by all of you.

  • Team view - Redesigned view where you can see all tasks delegated to people you collaborate with, manage your team and projects you share with others.
  • Edit mode for Projects and Categories - fixed :)
  • Search issues - resolved
  • Much more fixes - read full Release Notes

Enjoy Nozbe 2.0 beta 2 and please remember that this is still beta version so use it wisely at your own risk!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Marcus Platt's reference guide in English, Spanish, German, Japanese and Polish... and a Nozbe plugin for Chrome

A few weeks back we had the pleasure of passing down to you all link to quick reference guide by Marcus Platt. Now, with cooperation from our support team, the guide has been translated to all supported languages and Marcus was kind enough to release them. You can get the guide not only in English, but Spanish, German, Japanese and Polish as well.

Free Nozbe Reference Guide by Marcus Platt

Reference guide

We trust that this guide will benefit us all and help you all along the way to even more productive use of Nozbe. We are much obliged to Marcus for taking such pro-active and creative stance and making this possible. Working with him on the translation was also a very positive experience.

We believe and support such initiatives wholeheartedly, be they taken on by the idea-givers or passed to us as request.

To enhance the experience even more Marcus has also published his own Google Chrome plugin for Nozbe.

Visit Productive Wizard site to get the plugin and the reference guide in your language.

- Delfina (Chief Customer Happiness Officer, Nozbe)

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Get Nozbe 2.0 public beta today - welcome to the future of productivity

Wow, I'm so excited today! After more than a year of coding, brainstorming, working overtime, coding even more... we are ready to show you the future of Nozbe and the future of productivity: Nozbe 2.0 beta

Nozbe rewritten from scratch

After 7+ years of running Nozbe we decided to use everything we've learned so far about productivity and build new, mobile-friendly, super-fast, beautifully-designed apps that take advantage of both the desktop and mobile platforms.

Go to our Nozbe 2.0 beta site and watch me walk you through our new apps.


Here are some questions you might have about the Nozbe beta program and my best answers for you:

What's new in Nozbe 2.0?

  • brand new fresh, light and responsive design
  • much better app performance: speed, speed, speed
  • edit mode - you can edit/complete/delete multiple tasks at once - one of our most requested features!
  • 5th column (Info bar) - one place when you can see all details and options regarding active task list
  • filters and sorting - now you can filter your tasks list with many filters at once and sort the tasks as you like
  • ...and a lot more!

Where can I get Nozbe 2.0 beta for my device?

When will next "beta" versions be available?

We'll be rolling out a new beta version of Nozbe every 2 weeks throughout the whole Summer. Follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our blog.

When will the final Nozbe 2.0 be launched?

In September. We can't wait to roll it out to everyone. Up until then, Nozbe 1.9.x is the latest stable version of Nozbe.

Is the Nozbe beta stable and bug-free?

Nope. Not at all. Many things don't even work there correctly just yet. It's a beta product. It's mature enough so that we can test it with our bravest users, but it shouldn't be used in mission-critical environment. Use it at your own risk! :-)

Read the updated list of known issues on our "beta site"

What if I don't want to test Nozbe beta but still want to get something cool today?

Easy. Get the latest issue of the free Productive! Magazine with Pat Flynn for your iPhone, iPad or Android or read it on the web

This issue features: Pat Flynn — a beloved thought leader in the areas of online entrepreneurship and passive income


nine practical articles helping you get closer to a systematic and productive workflow and satisfying life.

What are my "next actions" for today?

Just these two things:

That's it, both of these things will make you a lot more productive this summer :-)

Thank you!

- post written by Michael Sliwinski, proud Nozbe CEO and founder :-)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Nozbe Sticker - make your Macbook Air/Pro more productive

Now this is a cool idea: Make your Macbook Air/Pro stand out and show you're a productive person by getting an official Nozbe sticker! We work with our partner: MakeItStick to bring you a high quality "productivity" sticker for your Macbook Air or Macbook Pro.

Here how the sticker looks like on a Macbook Air or Macbook Pro laptop:

Nozbe Sticker

Here's how to get one. Go to one of these links, order it directly from MakeItStick guys:

Limited time discount!

Use coupon code nozbe upon checkout and get 10% off everything you buy at the MakeItStick online shop. The discount is limited for the next 7 days!

How Michael, Nozbe founder applied his sticker on his Macbook Pro and his wife's Macbook Air:


Do you also produce gadgets that can be customized for Nozbe?

MakeItStick worked with us on this one. We're thrilled to have an official Nozbe sticker for our team members, customers and fans.

This year we're planning on launching a whole web site dedicated to Nozbe gadgets (cups, holders, badges, t-shirts, polo-shirts... and more!) - if you're in business of selling gadgets - partner with us! We love supporting independent shops like MakeItStick and we don't take any commision. All we care about is a great price for our customers and a high quality of the gadget and a high utility of course. If you want to partner with us, get in touch!

Question: Will you be getting one of these stickers for your Apple MacBook laptop? Let us know!

... and if you already got one, post your pics on Twitter or Facebook and link to them in the comments! Thanks!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Nozbe Evernote, Dropbox and other integrations & security

As you all know recently there were some changes and improvements made in our integrations with the external apps such as Evernote, Dropbox or Box which came with version 1.9.2.. Most of our customers loved the new features but some expressed concerns about security of our implementations. In this post I will try to address these and explain why we did what we did... and why everything is sweet and secure.

Secure Evernote, Dropbox or Box links in Nozbe

What happens when you add an Evernote note, a Dropbox or Box file... as comment to a task in Nozbe?

Through these services' API, Nozbe creates a special, secure link to the item you are attaching. While this link is a unique URL and may be considered as "public", we need to create it in order to let people you're sharing project with have access to the resource you're attaching.

Where is the information about this unique URL stored?

It's only stored in Nozbe. Nowhere else. Nobody can access the link to your Evernote note, Dropbox or Box file, unless they are sharing the same project with you, where the attached item is.

What if I don't share this project with anyone?

Then nobody will ever see this link. Nobody will access it. You can only see it and you can only access this resource. It's completely private for you.

What if somebody can discover the link?

This links is unique and is virtually impossible to be discovered by someone who has not received it from the owner. It only passes between your Nozbe and Evernote and is only visible to you and those you share given project with.


We take security seriously. It's all we think about. All the connection between you, Nozbe, Evernote, Dropbox, Box... is being done through SSL secure connection at a banking-level encryption, so nobody unauthorized can access your Nozbe or other cloud data. Please remember that your privacy and security is our first priority here at Nozbe.

If you still have any questions about it, please email me at and I'll be happy to chat about how we do everything we can to make sure your data is safe at all times here at Nozbe.

(Written by Delfina - Support - CHO - Chief Happiness Officer)

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Free Nozbe reference guide cheat sheet by our community member Marcus Platt

Our wonderful user community never ceases to amaze me. There are plenty of examples of feedback, ideas and features that come from our fantastic customers. Yet, I have not encountered such pro-active and creative approach in a long while. I'm referring to recent creation of Marcus Platt, one of our long-time users of Nozbe.

Free Nozbe Reference Guide by Marcus Platt

Reference guide

He has recently posted a quick reference guide to Nozbe. It is a short and concise compilation of guidelines that are fully described on our help pages and in numerous blog posts we wrote here. And that is what is so great about it. You can print it out and look at it for fast hints on e.g. how to format your actions. When you want a full description you surely will need to browse our help pages, but in all other cases his 'cheat sheet' provides you with at-glacé information and saves you time.

Moreover, Marcus has kindly given us his consent to translate the guide to all the languages we support and once we'll get it done, we'll post the guides on our Help Pages.

Once again I'm very thankful to Marcus for having this awesome idea and going thorough with it. It will benefit us all, and I hope there will be more users like him to contribute things like that over time. Thank you Marcus.

Visit Productive Wizard site to get the guide from Marcus

- Delfina (Chief Customer Happiness Officer, Nozbe)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

More Passion? Productive Magazine #19 with Chris Brogan & #20 with Joost Wouters

First off, thank you so much for an amazing reception of my new book "It's all about Passion!", I received lots of fantastic emails and more than 5000 people are already reading my book. Thank you so much for your passion!

More passion coming in with Chris Brogan and Joost Wouters

As you know from one of the last chapters in my book, I love sharing my life with passionate people and I also get to do it through Productive! Magazine which we're publishing for you, [[name]], our great Nozbe customer:

Productive! Magazine

April: Issue #19 with Chris Brogan

I talked to Chris (best-selling author, editor and inspirational speaker) about us being "freaks" taking over the world and about his love for business, not for tools. He also reveals his professional plans:

"I am right on the verge of changing this a little bit. And this change I am about to make is dangerous. I don't say that to add excitement to our interview. :)"

He also explains his "freakiness":

"The stranger I became - the weirder I became - the more money I made. The more true I was to who I really was, the more I started making money."

May: Issue #20 with Joost Wouters

I also had a chance to sit down with Joost Wouters - the author of "The 15-minute inbox". In the interview he says how to easily harness your inbox and what to do in order not to be a fire fighter... :)

"People are spending so much time in their inbox. It is like they are leading their teams with e-mail. They write so many e-mails that they can hardly find time to think or to be with their team."

Each of these issues offers you a whole range of practical articles full of tips and information on how to get done more, quicker, better and with less stress. Read the articles and find out if you are doing absolutely everything you can to make your life happier :)

Read the magazine as you like.

Productive! Magazine is a free, monthly doze of optimism, inspiration and useful productivity tips. You can take advantage of all these in your preferred way.

Get our apps:

... or simply read it online

Apart of the interviews we've got great articles by Judith Glaser, Laura Stack, Gonçalo Gil Mata, Jill Celeste, James Tonn and other passionate productivity experts. Enjoy!

Productive! Magazine family of free inspirational magazines is growing worldwide:

Mówisz po polsku?

Read the latest edition of Productive! Magazine Polska. We've got 7 practical and motivating articles by productivity coaches and bloggers waiting for you as well as the interview with one of the top Polish social media experts - Maciek "Mediafun" Budzich.

¿Hablas Español?

There is Productive! Magazine in Spanish full of articles written by Spanish productivity aficionados.


We also published Productive! Magazine in Japanese with amazing articles written by Japanese productivity experts.

Spread the word, please

Please, do let me know how do you like this issue of our monthly and share Productive! Magazine with your friends and colleagues

Thank you!

Monday, May 26, 2014

How we use Nozbe - Customer Support

Written by Rafal (Nozbe Product Manager)

Today I want to present you how Nozbe helps us provide great Customer Support to you - our users.

Nozbe is our "ticketing" system

Every email from a customer that requires some technical analysis is forwarded to one of our shared Nozbe projects. We have 3 main projects in Nozbe that serve this purpose:

  • Nozbe Support (bugs, problems with apps, etc.),
  • Payments (problems with payments, affiliates, etc.)
  • Feature Requests (how you guys think we should improve Nozbe for you)

Today I will show you how we manage the first group of issues in our main "Nozbe Support" project.

"Nozbe Support" project

Every task in this project is first reviewed by me. I am not a "Programming Ninja" like our developers but as a Product Manager I have some technical skills and in many cases I can come up with a solution or workaround for a reported issue. If no, thanks to rich comments feature in Nozbe, I can add a comment to the task with a feedback from my investigation and delegate task to one of our guys in the Development Team. They will know about this immediately thanks to notifications in Nozbe.

Sometimes we need more details...

...about the issue. To resolve it, I add a comment to the task asking our support team to email the customer for more details, etc. I delegate it to one of reps from our Support Team who created the issue and she asks a customer to provide additional information via mail. When user sends back an answer we use our magic trick that helps us add comments via email to an existing task and this is exactly what happens: an email is forwarded to Nozbe as a comment to the task.

We use Nozbe and we love it!

Yes, there are many ways to handle customer support but... we love Nozbe and we have realized by using Nozbe for managing our entire company, we get the benefits of having everything and everyone on board. Each time we use Nozbe we constantly improve our product and make it better for our users. Next week I will show you other insights of our workflow in Nozbe.

Question: Have you thought about using Nozbe for customer support? What do you think about our setup?

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Free book from your Nozbe CEO: "It's all about Passion!"

As a Nozbe user you should know more who's behind the app you're using every day to plan your day and get things done. Today let me invite you to my world and... hopefully inspire you.

I have a gift for you. Let me thank you for being a part of my life!

Two days ago I turned 35. As a gift and a token of gratitude to you, my fantastic Nozbe customer, I decided to publish a book where you can get to know me a little better, see what drives me and hopefully you'll let me inspire you to discover more passions in your life.

It's all about Passion

In this book I'm sharing the story of 7 types of passion I discovered over 7 years of running Nozbe. I hope that it encourages you to continue our journey together towards an even more passionate life.

Get the free book: "It's all about Passion"

The book is completely free. After all, it's a gift from me to you. The book is available in these formats: PDF, Mobi (Kindle) or ePub (iBooks).

Bonus: a 20-minute video interview with me

Together with the book you'll get to see me share more details of my story on video in a previously unpublished interview with me:

7 types of passion

Passion inspires and attracts people. Throughout my professional career, I discovered that there is not just one thing I am crazy about that let's me work, improve, fight the obstacles and succeed. There is a whole range of passions that motivate me and help me go on and get up every day with excitement.

These passions include: right attitude towards money, finding a solution, building a product, improving my industry, growing as a person and leader, helping others and interacting with other passionate people.

Check out the complete Table of Contents of my book

Passionate people contributed to my book - read their stories

David Allen, Michael Hyatt, Steve Pavlina, Brett Terpstra, Laura Stack, Jason Womack, Augusto Pinaud, Michael Bungay Stanier, Stever Robbins, Maciek Budzich... and many more of my friends contributed to this book.

Some sent me short quotes which I included throughout this book. Others shared their own “passionate stories”. Read my book to meet them and get to know their stories, too.

Get the free book: "It's all about Passion"

Thank you for being a part of my passionate journey and for a privilege of being a part of your life.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Keep it short - how to keep task names clear

Written by Delfina (Nozbe Support - CHO - Chief Happiness Officer)

Working at Nozbe with our fabulous team gives me the opportunity to go through almost every situation you can imagine. I see all kinds of actionable tasks, project names and descriptions.

I'll try to draw your attention to important matter in productivity which is: reaching a perfection in terms of short, clear and understandable task names.

The background

We live a hectic life where concrete, precise and short information is worth its weight in gold. Unfortunately, it is not as easy as it sounds. Starting with our over-long emails (a very good article on this is to be found in Productive! Magazine no.8 by Leo Babauta “Your emails are too long”) through everyday writing to as simple things as names of actions. I would compare creating tasks to writing a book. If you give it a title that is too long what can the consequences be like?

Keep short Nozbe task names

How not to write

Being productive in some ways is having everything optimized and kept as clear as possible. Having that in mind, sometimes we come across task names like this example:

'Tom please go to the coat rack, pick the dog leash, leash the dog, open the door and take the dog out, please make sure it has enough time for running and doing its things because it needs at least 30 minutes of running, plus for his toilet.'

First off, this is not a task, but a checklist... or better yet - even a small project. Second thing - Tom will not be happy about receiving a task like this. He might get confused.

The key to perfect task naming

The valuable thing we all learn here at Nozbe is to provide short and precise information as possible.

Don’t you think task like 'walk the dog' delegated to Tom says it all? I believe if you pass it to him he will already know how things go after another as where the dog leash is. Else, why would you delegate the task to him in the 1st place? If there is any information you do need to provide Tom with think that it may be better to post it in comment. Easy to find and quick to reach.

Just take a look at this detailed and yet everyday occurance: when Tom takes a look at his chores and sees 'walk the dog' I bet he would feel pretty OK about it and proceed to doing it. I think Tom would appreciate it much more then this absurdly long task name which I originally quoted :-) Simply, don't place any additional information that can be given in comments in the task's name - you will notice the change very quickly!

Task name's situations from Nozbe

The first thing I see in the morning is my Next Action list which contains maybe around 30-50 tasks with short, snappy names like “walk the dog”; “view/comment on forum”; “support”; “refunds”; “write to Mr. X about a post” and so on… If I didn't have lists like that I would not even get half of them done because just reading long names would take lots of my time and what about the time I really need to perform those things?

Most of these task names are routine and I don’t even need notes for them. Some have notes added as comments by my colleagues informing me who e.g. needs a refund, what is Mr. X email address and all other needed info. But now you can agree with me that I really don't need to see it as soon as I see the task. I will need it once I get down into doing it. All the 'filling' does not need to distract my attention until I'm actually ready to do the action.


As I see it, most successful are these tasks that have short and intriguing names. Names that are pure essence of what needs to be done. Any further information can be described with as much gruesome details as you like in the task's comments. If you dump the details on someone right up front, you will make your team members feel simply overwhelmed and confused.

Question: How do you deal with tasks in your team? Feel free to post your methods below and inspire others :-)

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Hope you'll enjoy this blog.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Nozbe 1.9.3 release with bug fixes and improvements

Written by Piotr (Nozbe Chief Marketing Officer)

Just after Nozbe 1.9.2 release we went very proactive and started working on improvements right away. As usual, our Programming Ninjas worked very fast and we're glad today to bring you a new update which is Nozbe version 1.9.3.

Although this update includes only minor bug fixes and improvements, we hope it'll match your expectations and make your work more effective. These updates apply all of our apps, both the mobile app as well as the desktop apps.

Nozbe version 1.9.3

If you have the previous version of Nozbe (1.9.2) your app should automatically update. In the case of Mac and iPhone/iPad apps - the updates will be downloaded from their App Stores. Here are the changes:

As it goes for desktop Nozbe (web app, Mac, Windows, iPad and Android tablet apps):

  • We've fixed an issue with Calendar because it displayed wrong days of week in June 2014. You won't miss the correct date for your previous tasks and projects anymore.
  • What we've also noticed was that there were icons in print view mode missing. It has now been fixed.

Nozbe for mobile (mobile web app, iPhone and Android):

  • Nozbe on iPhone couldn't hear your voice as well as it was supposed to - we've made a fix and now are adding tasks via voice control is back and operational.

Both versions:

  • lots of small fixes and improvements all around to make sure your Nozbe feels even better now :-)

We strongly hope that these fixes and improvements will make your Nozbe experience even better! Feel free to post your feedback below and thanks for being such a great Nozbe user!