use as a todo/task management app?
Robert William Vesterman
bob at vesterman.com
Mon Feb 27 03:43:26 UTC 2023
I misstated this: "Show me all current blockers". Really I'd like a way
to "Show me all current blockers that are not themselves currently blocked".
On 2/26/2023 7:59 PM, Robert William Vesterman wrote:
> This may be somewhat crazy, but I've never been satisfied with any of
> the todo/task management apps that I know of, mostly because of a
> single common issue that they all suffer from (in my opinion), and it
> suddenly occurred to me a few minutes ago that the typical
> bug-tracking app could be massaged into being a todo/task management
> app that does /not /suffer from this. So, I'm now wondering whether
> there are any /different/ reasons that this wouldn't be a good use
> case for Bugzilla (or something like it). As background, I've used
> Bugzilla to actually report bugs on various projects, but I've never
> used it running on my own server, or to work on bugs that someone has
> To back up a bit, the issue that I'm referring to is that it always
> seems like relations between tasks can only be structured as trees
> (well, forests, really): Any particular task can have at most one
> parent task. For me, it always seems much more natural to be able to
> have multiple parents for a single task (i.e. the tasks should form an
> acyclic directed graph, not necessarily a forest).
> For a contrived example: In real life, the "Bake a cake" task depends
> upon the "Buy flour" task, which depends upon the "Go grocery
> shopping" task. Typical todo/task apps can handle this just fine,
> insofar as described. But the problem comes up when you realize that
> going grocery shopping can be a dependence for a whole bunch of things
> completely unrelated to baking a cake (e.g. buying Liquid Plumber),
> while at the same time in the other direction, baking a cake can be
> dependent upon a whole bunch of things completely unrelated to going
> grocery shopping (e.g. fixing the oven).
> I realize that there are workarounds for this sort of thing - e.g.
> allowing a task to have arbitrary "tags", or making multiple in-app
> tasks all meaning "Bake a cake", but these always seem very kludgy to
> me, and I can't help but think using the app would be much simpler if
> it were just able to represent multi-parented tasks in the first place.
> But, like I said, it just suddenly occurred to me that something like
> Bugzilla does /not/ have this problem. For example:
> * Bug "Don't have cake" is blocked by bug "Don't have flour";
> * Bug "Don't have cake" is blocked by bug "Oven isn't working";
> * Bug "Don't have flour" is blocked by bug "Need to go to the grocery
> * Bug "Toilet is clogged" is blocked by bug "Don't have Liquid Plumber";
> * Bug "Don't have Liquid Plumber" is blocked by bug "Need to go to the
> grocery store".
> Obviously you wouldn't have to describe the tasks in terms of being
> "bugs", but (A) I'm putting it in Bugzilla-esque terms just to show
> the idea, and (B) I kind of like it, tbh :P
> Crazy or not, that sounds pretty great to me, so now I'm just
> generally asking "Are there any other reasons why Bugzilla might not
> be great for this?", plus some specific questions based on that
> general question:
> (1) Is there a way (preferably an easily usable way) to do things like
> "Show me all current blockers", ordering by priority and/or due date?
> I'm guessing the answer is "Yes, of course", but more specifically:
> (2) Can things like "priority" and "due date" in that refer not simply
> to the blocker in and of itself, but also to the things that it
> blocks? For example, I might decide one day that I should (for no
> particular reason) buy some flour, and thus add a "Buy flour" task
> with priority "Low". But the next day, I might REALLY REALLY NEED
> CAKE, so I'd add a "Bake a cake" task with priority "Critical". In
> the report, I would like the "Buy flour" task to then be considered
> "Critical", without me needing to go and manually update that task.
> And if I then buy enough flour to bake a cake but for some reason
> /not/ enough to cover all my upcoming, low-priority predicted baking
> needs, I'd like "Buy flour" to /automatically/ revert to "Low" in the
> report after I mark "Bake a cake" as being done.
> (3) This is really a would-be-nice rather than a need, but: How about
> ordering by something like... not sure of the actual terminology to
> use, but... the /combined weight/ of the things that the blocker
> blocks? So something along the lines of a blocker that blocks a bunch
> of critical tasks being more important than a blocker that only blocks
> a few critical tasks.
> (4) Same not-really-a-need sort of thing: What about repeating tasks?
> Is there a reasonably easy way to submit the same sort of bug every
> week or whatever? I mean, that cake I bake today isn't gonna last for
> the rest of my life.
> Please help. I really need cake.
> support-list mailing list
> support-list at bugzilla.org
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