Task Player: Play Your Tasks

Innovation has stagnated for productivity apps on the web. On the mobile front however, multitouch interfaces have opened up the floodgates of creativity. Productivity apps like Clear, Soonr, Any.DO, Wunderlist and many others push the limits of the platform to make staying productive fun and efficient.

The latest to join the list is Task Player, which is doubly unique. It targets the niche of pomodoro users and lets you play your tasks like music! I’m equally curious to see what that’s all about. Join me after the jump!

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Pomodoro Productivity

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method developed by Francesco Cirillo. The technique uses a timer to break down periods of work into 25-minute intervals called “pomodori” (from the Italian word pomodoro for “tomato”), separated by short breaks.

Pomodoro is a fun, yet rigorous productivity technique that can for sure build a routine and a strict discipline. Besides, there are a ton of gorgeous apps to assist you in keeping track of your tasks even if you don’t go with Task Player.

Getting Started with Task Player

Task Player sports a flat design with a color scheme that’s easy on the eyes. The sample task list that spells out the steps involved and instructions to get the maximum out of the app is lifted from Any.DO, still, it’s nice to have and is extremely helpful.

A Flat User Interface Design Listing Albums and Creating an Album

A Flat User Interface Design Listing Albums and Creating an Album

Alright, the bottom line is you create task lists and add tasks to them. But in the app’s parlance, you create an album (task list) and add songs (songs) to it. Group your tasks album-wise and play it. Just like a music player, but for tasks!

It’s not just the jargon that has references to music and a music player. To stay true to the concept, you are asked to specify a duration for each task. For instance, if you plan to paint your room and compose an email, you can specify how long each task should last. Add them to your respective albums for better organization.

When you want to time your tasks just play it. Task Player will alert you when you need to move to the next task.

Gestures and Controls

Tapping the + button lets you create albums and tasks depending on which section of the app you are currently in. When adding tasks to an album, you can assign a cute little icon to them and there is a whole bunch of them to choose from. To the right of each task is the timer and is set by default to 25 minutes.

Creating Tasks and Task Play Options

Creating Tasks and Task Play Options

Do note that each task has to have a set duration. There cannot be a task that lasts for zero minutes and you have the liberty to do it leisurely as you please. This is in stark contrast to traditional GTD methodology, and this is what separates Pomodoro from the rest.

Playing an Album

Playing an Album

It’s a bit annoying to type in the time in minutes, though. The app follows the HH:MM:SS format and there is no way to change it. So, 90 minutes has to be typed in as 1:30:00 and that involves entering a lot of zeroes. We could definitely use a minutes to hours convertor to make things easier over here.

To further help you distinguish between tasks, four different color tags are automatically added based on the duration you enter.

Tasks in an album are in auto-play mode by default. You can pause a task for taking a break, but if you move on to the next task without completing the previous one, it’s considered skipped.

Color Coded Tags and Color Selection

Color Coded Tags and Color Selection

You cannot go back and pick it up from where you left off. This isn’t a limitation of Task Player — the pomodoro technique is full of such quirks!

Final Thoughts

Brilliant. Brilliant. Brilliant. That’s how I would describe the implementation and effectiveness of Task Player. It’s true that only when things are fun to do, many among us will take it seriously. Task Player’s USP lies in keeping boredom out of staying on top of tasks and managing a productivity tool.

There are two things that you might want to consider before embracing Task Player. First, pomodoro technique isn’t for everyone. It’s kinda like having OCD and you might want see if the good old GTD is working for you in the first place. Second, like many other new wave productivity apps, Task Player is mobile only. There is no desktop or web app to sync and work from multiple devices.

If these aren’t primary concerns for you, then there is no reason for you to not embrace Task Player in a heartbeat!


Summary

Task Player groups your tasks as album and lets you play them. It's like a music player, but for tasks.

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