Best practices

Best practices when using Ultralist CLI

Ultralist is a simple tool, and your success using it is quite dependent on how you use it. This is true for any task management sytem.

Avoid overdue tasks.

Ultralist will show overdue tasks first. You should either complete these, change the due date, or just delete them, if they are not relevant anymore. But having a giant list of overdue tasks is an antipattern!

Use the agenda.

ultralist l due:agenda

The agenda view is great, because it’s the list you need to see 90% of the time.

It shows all incomplete tasks that are due today or are overdue. It will not show tasks due tomorrow or in the future.

Shell aliases are your friend.

I keep many aliases handy:

alias u="ultralist"
alias uc="ultralist l due:agenda group:context"
alias up="ultralist l due:agenda group:project"
alias tod="ultralist l goup:project due:tod"
alias tom="ultralist l goup:project due:tom"
alias mon="ultralist l goup:project due:mon"
alias tue="ultralist l goup:project due:tue"
alias wed="ultralist l goup:project due:wed"
alias thu="ultralist l goup:project due:thu"
alias fri="ultralist l goup:project due:fri"
alias c="ultralist l completed:tod"

Running up is much easier than typing ultralist l due:agenda group:project every time!

Show your ultralist every time you open a shell.

Some folks love to see their list every time they open a shell. You can easily do that.

In your .zshrc or .bashrc, simply add ultralist list to the bottom.

If you’re using Ultralist Pro, sync your list with cron.

Ultralist Pro can’t connect to your local computer when your list changes. The CLI needs to be manually synced. But that isn’t a problem. In a unix system, there are tools for such matters. Cron up your Ultralist to sync with the Pro backend on an interval of your choosing.

  */15 8-17 * * 1-5 cd ~/work && ultralist sync

Reflect on your completed tasks daily.

You can show what you completed for the day by running the following:

ultralist l completed:tod

Archive completed stuff daily.

ultralist ar c

Once stuff is done, it’s good to archive it so it won’t show up on your lists.

Garbage collect weekly.

ultralist ar gc

Garbage collection will delete all archived tasks, thus re-claiming all single-digit ids.