Things 3

It’s been a couple of weeks since the release of Things 3. I have had some time to use the app and explore its various new features.

Admittedly, my first reaction after downloading was mixed. Like many others, I had the initial impression that the changes between the new version and Things 2 were mainly limited to visual refresh1. However, this impression went away pretty fast.

Here are some of the highlights of the new Things according to my observation:

  • I’d like to start with an aspect of Things that I liked before the launch and continue to like after the fact: the distinction between areas and projects makes a lot of sense to me. Projects are, by all common understanding, defined by a temporal limit. In other words, a project has to end at some point in time. Areas (e.g. “Work”, “home”, etc.), on the other hand, can be taken as perpetually existing buckets for items that may or may not belong to a project and that are related to the meaning of the area.
  • The concept of a project has been massively enhanced by the ability to define sections inside the project as well as the ability to add a description to the project itself. Projects become a lot easier to manage by this means.
  • Subtasks have more utility than expected. For example, I use subtasks within the definition of a task to create the expense statement within a project created to organize a business trip. In other words, I create the task to fill in my expense statement in advance of the trip and then create a subtask for each expense to be included in the final statement.
  • “Upcoming” is nice to have, but I use it less than I initially though I would.
  • I’ve successfully reduced the number of reminders and still haven’t lost track of anything that needed to be done.

Here are some aspects that I sort of wish were supported:

  • There is no way to display a list of everything. I don’t know, maybe sometimes you want to get an overview of all the unresolved tasks, no?
  • Dark theme. I’m a sucker for dark themes.

Overall I really dig the new version of Things. It came with a lot of stuff that I never knew I wanted. But now that I’ve made myself comfortable with Things 3 it is hard to imagine using anything else for the foreseeable future.

  1. Which does not mean that the visual refresh wasn’t appreciated. Even with the visual refresh the launch of Things 3 would have been impressive, in my opinion.