It appears someone at Google finally realized that Gmail users might want a task manager integrated into their beloved webmail service. Well, all I can say is that it’s about frickin’ time. I’ve been using the Remember The Milk (RTM) Firefox add-on that fills this need as a sort of workaround for at least a year now. I’m not sure what took the Gmail workers over at Google so long to figure out this need considering Gmail is one of their best and most heavily used services but I’m very thankful it has finally been addressed.
Before you can access the new task manager, you need to activate it. You can do this by simply logging in to your Gmail account and clicking on the Gmail Labs icon in the upper right hand corner of the screen. Oh, make sure you are using the Newer Version and not the Old version of Gmail as you won’t be able to see it. The new Tasks feature should be at the top of the list of Gmail Lab features. You just need to enable it and then scroll down to the bottom of the page to save your settings.
To add a new task you just need to click on the Tasks link that’s located under Contacts in the left hand column. A small window will appear in the lower right hand corner where you can add, complete, rearrange, or delete your tasks. You can pop this window out and make it larger for easier viewing and minimize it for easy access as your working by clicking on the arrow key in the upper right hand corner of the task window. If you select the Actions link at the bottom of the task manager’s window you’ll see a few other commands that can be executed such as Indent, Help, Show tips, View completed tasks, etc. and in the lower right hand corner of the task window there’s small list icon that allows you to create and manage multiple task lists. The new Task feature does a few other things like like allowing you to assign emails as tasks simply by check marking them and selecting the “Add to Tasks” option in the “More Actions” feature at the top of your Inbox. You can also attach a note or a due date to your tasks by clicking on the arrow symbol to the right of the task.
Tasks for Gmail is very simple and it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles like RTM but because it’s already integrated into Gmail, easier to access, and will likely work on all browsers (not just Firefox like RTM) it should be a smashing hit. I’m now worrying about Remember The Milk and how many Gmail-RTM users will switch to the default Task manager that’s now available. I’m sure the hardcore RTM users will stay for the time being however, as the Gmail Tasks manager doesn’t display tasks in Google Calendar and they can’t be shared via email unlike the RTM solution. However, it most likely won’t take the Gmail developers long to integrate those task management features to further enhance user productivity and Gmail’s image as a gtd app.If you liked this article, please take this time to share it with your Facebook friends using the Facebook button (see Facebook post button to the left) or retweet it using Twitter (see retweet button to the left). You may also want to follow us or subscribe to the site to stay up-to-date with this article. If you'd rather follow us from your Facebook account, join our Facebook fan page or subscribe to our NetworkedBlogs profile.
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