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Best Tasks Package for Sublime Text 3 – PlainText

I’ve had a quick look through the tasks packages for SublimeText 3, and found my absolute favourite

PlainTasks by aziz is fantastic.

Unlike some other packages, it’s not intended to aggregate todo items littered throughout other files – you need to create a separate *.todo (or *.tasks, and some other configurable options). Opening that file will show in (very likely) a different way to the rest of your normal files, and this makes it very clear that this is “different” to a normal code file.

From there, and taking a leaf from Markdown, you’re actually just editing plain text, as the name might suggest. PlainTasks does use some UTF-8 characters for “empty boxes” and “ticks” to add a bit more visual affordance over more simple ASCII, and I really like that.

You also get some very convenient shortcuts to use for adding tasks, marking them done, cancelling them, etc. Just like Markdown, you don’t really need any fancy tools to manage this (with the exception of the fancy characters), and the amount of tooling there is feels just about right.

Another lovely thing – I took a list of tasks I’d created where each line started with a hyphen instead of the special “empty box” that starts PlainTasks items. It was a snap to select the whole block of items, Shift + Command + L to “split selection into lines”; delete the hyphens and then use PlainTasks’ “New Task” shortcut (Command + Enter) to convert each line into a “proper” task beginning with the right empty box character. This shows both the power of ST and the very nice degree of integration that PlainTasks implements.

There are some other very nice features – use #filename to refer to a file and (new in Sublime Text 3) use #filename@symbol to link directly to a function in a remote file.

Anyway – choice of a task list app is obviously personal, but I know which one I like!