Plancake news http://www.plancake.com/blog Plancake news en-us plancake@plancakebakers.com plancake@plancakebakers.com PHP RSS Feed Generator New small useful features Hi.

We have added two small but very useful features:

  • there is a new button on the top left corner of the screen for adding a task very quickly from whichever list/view you are
  • the inbox counter is visible even if you scroll down your list of lists.

We hope you like them and please let us know if you have any issue with them.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2013/11/04/new-small-useful-features Mon, 04 Nov 2013 22:39:48 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2013/11/04/new-small-useful-features
Plancake Memo Mate is out: send voice and text memos and ideas to your Plancake account with your smartphone! Hi.

I am very glad to announce the official launch of Plancake Memo Mate.

Plancake Memo Mate is a smartphone app that you can download for free from your app store. It is available for iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone.

We love it - it is so handy. The app allows you to quickly (with just 2 taps) record a short voice message while you are on the go. The app then sends the voice message to your Plancake account so that you can listen to it once you get home or to your office.
And, if you prefer to type your message, you can easily do that, too.

Plancake Memo Mate  is very useful for not forgetting that great idea you had or if you want to get that to-do out of your mind. That way, you can keep on enjoying your walk or fall asleep more quickly.

You can watch the video we have done for the launch at this link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMFgqwPOpm0

We hope you find this feature as great as we do!

Today is not only pancake day, it is also Plancake day ;-)

Happy plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2013/02/12/plancake-memo-mate-is-out-send-voice-and-text-memos-and-ideas-to-your-plancake-account Tue, 12 Feb 2013 15:58:19 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2013/02/12/plancake-memo-mate-is-out-send-voice-and-text-memos-and-ideas-to-your-plancake-account
A nice offer to wish you Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Hi.

The Plancake team would like to wish all users a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Thanks a lot for being with us and for supporting the product we all love.

As a present, we would like to extend your Premium account by an extra 45 days when you upgrade by the 1st of January 2013. We hope you like it.

Happy plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/12/23/a-nice-offer-to-wish-you-merry-christmas-and-happy-new-year Sun, 23 Dec 2012 01:50:12 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/12/23/a-nice-offer-to-wish-you-merry-christmas-and-happy-new-year
Added sort alphabetically and Dutch language + rebranded our smartphone app for memos Hi all.

Firstly, I am very excited to announce we have launched the Dutch translation. A big "thank you" to our volunteer translators, Elly and Hans, and please let all your Dutch friends know about this :-)

Secondly, we have launched a new feature, as many of you have requested it. You are now able to sort your tasks alphabetically - great for grocery shopping lists.

A quick update on our fantastic memo app- we have decided to rebrand it from "Plancake Voice Memo Recorder" to "Plancake Memo Mate". We believe the new name is cooler and better reflects the use of the app. Furthermore, you can now send both voice and text memos.

The app is now available for iPhone, iPad, Android and Blackberry. It should be out for Windows Phone in the next couple of weeks. Please give it a try and let us know what you think.

Happy Plancaking,
Dan

 

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/10/28/added-sorted-alphabetically-and-dutch-language--rebranded-our-smartphone-app-for-memos Sun, 28 Oct 2012 19:07:34 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/10/28/added-sorted-alphabetically-and-dutch-language--rebranded-our-smartphone-app-for-memos
Some improvements + upcoming launch Hi.

Over the last few weeks we have released some small changes that, we believe, are going to make a big difference for you:
  • scrolling lists and tasks on tablets is now easier and more fluid
  • the performance of speed on the mobile app has been improved
  • the order of tasks in your "Today & Tomorrow" screen doesn't get reset every day as it did before
  • some minor bugs have been fixed
We are so looking forward to the official launch of our "secret" project: Plancake Memo Mate. It is already available on Android. We are waiting for Apple and Blackberry to release it on their platforms and we have almost finished building it for Windows Mobile. You are going to love it! :-)

UPDATE: today (October 12) the app is available on Blackberry, too!

UPDATE: today (October 15) the app is available on iPhone and iPad, too!

 
Thank you very much for your help and happy Plancaking!
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/10/11/some-improvements--help-needed-with-the-upcoming-launch Thu, 11 Oct 2012 16:58:28 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/10/11/some-improvements--help-needed-with-the-upcoming-launch
Our ebook is finally out and the Plancake sidebar is now scrollable Today we have launched two things we are very excited about.

First of all, we have completed our short ebook on GTD and how to make the most of Plancake.

Our Premium users can download it from their Settings page:
https://www.plancake.com/account.php/settings

I would like to thank one of our users, Justine, for the great work she has done on the ebook - we have been very lucky finding her!

The second thing is a new left sidebar. If you have a lot of lists (as I have) the new scrollable sidebar should make your life much easier with dragging and dropping of tasks, and during the review of your system. We have done testing, but if you find a browser where this feature doesn't work properly, please let us know.

I hope you like both of the new updates and, as usual, we would love to hear your feedback.

Happy Plancaking,
Dan

 

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/08/19/our-ebook-is-finally-out-and-the-plancake-sidebar-is-now-scrollable Sun, 19 Aug 2012 22:26:39 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/08/19/our-ebook-is-finally-out-and-the-plancake-sidebar-is-now-scrollable
Get 2-year Premium account by helping us with finalizing the Plancake ebook. Hi Plancakers.

As most of you may know, we have prepared a nice ebook for our Premium users.

It is a concise guide (around 20-25 pages) on how to make the most of Plancake and GTD.

We would just need a person to proofread it and make it more enjoyable (by improving how it reads).

Before looking around, I was wondering if any of our users would be happy to help with this. As compensation, we would give you a Premium account for two years (or a two-year extension of your current one).

You should have a very good mastering of the English language and some experience as a writer/blogger/editor.

If you are interested, please get in touch - we will give you the draft of the ebook and you'll let us know whether you are up for the task.

Thank you!
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/07/19/get-2-years-premium-account-by-helping-us-with-finalizing-the-plancake-ebook Thu, 19 Jul 2012 22:25:08 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/07/19/get-2-years-premium-account-by-helping-us-with-finalizing-the-plancake-ebook
Norwegian now available - Japanese, German, Spanish, Dutch and Portuguese in the pipeline Hi.

We are so excited to announce Plancake is available in Norwegian thanks to the amazing volunteer effort of one of our users.

The languages supported by Plancake are now four:

  • English
  • Italian
  • French
  • Norwegian

We also have five languages that are currently half done:

  • Dutch
  • Japanese
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Portuguese

If any of you are interested in helping us with that, we offer a 2-year Premium account in return. That would be really great!

Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/06/11/norwegian-now-available--japanese-german-spanish-and-portuguese-in-the-pipeline Mon, 11 Jun 2012 17:26:00 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/06/11/norwegian-now-available--japanese-german-spanish-and-portuguese-in-the-pipeline
Export to Excel is now available for Premium accounts Hi.

You can now export all of your tasks to an Excel spreadsheet. That can be good if you want a backup or an overview of all your tasks that can be viewed, even offline.

You can use the feature from your Settings page.

You can easily upgrade from this page if you want to have access to this useful feature:
https://www.plancake.com/login?redirect-to-subscribe=1

Happy Plancaking!
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/06/11/export-to-excel-is-now-available-for-premium-accounts Mon, 11 Jun 2012 16:52:02 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/06/11/export-to-excel-is-now-available-for-premium-accounts
Personalize the background of your account Starting today you can personalize your Plancake experience even more.

 
At the bottom of the screen, on the left, we have added a little widget that allows you to change the background of your account.
 
If you are like me, checking your Plancake account many, many times throughout the day, you will notice how this feature can make a big difference to your user experience.
 
We also hope we have picked good wallpapers - we would like to hear your opinion on that.
 
Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/04/17/personalise-the-background-of-your-account Tue, 17 Apr 2012 11:24:53 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/04/17/personalise-the-background-of-your-account
New design I am glad to announce we have just launched a minor redesign of the application.

A big thank you to one of our users, Elmar. He downloaded the Open Source version of Plancake, changed it to use it with his team, and contributed his modifications back.

Elmar is cofounder of Minkenberg Medien - a company based in Germany and providing web development, print and multimedia production. I can tell they are very good and efficient at web developing as I was pretty impressed on how they customized the Plancake code.

Any feedback on this new design is more than welcome.

We are now working on giving you the opportunity to choose your background from a predefined set.

We know you check Plancake very often, so we think the possibility to tune its look according to your preference can be very nice.

Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/04/04/new-design Wed, 04 Apr 2012 13:50:38 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/04/04/new-design
Drag&Drop of tasks now available for the 'Overdue & Today' filter We are glad to announce you can now drag and drop tasks not only in a list but also in the 'Overdue & Today' filter.

You should find that particularly useful when you want to plan the things to do for the day (and their order of execution!) and also for switching tasks from today to tomorrow (or the other way around).

Hope you like it.

Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/29/dragdrop-of-tasks-now-available-for-the-overdue--today-filter- Thu, 29 Mar 2012 08:53:05 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/29/dragdrop-of-tasks-now-available-for-the-overdue--today-filter-
New project idea: voice recorder for memos - please have your say  

I have been using a voice recorder app on my Android phone for quite some time now.
I really like having this additional, very flexible Inbox so that I can keep my mind clear very easily wherever I am.
 
The downsides: the app I have been using is a bit buggy and I still need to have a task on Plancake that reminds me to check my voice messages.
 
The solution: create a Plancake smartphone app that records your voice messages and deliver them to your Plancake Inbox.
That way, whenever you have an idea you don't want to lose, you just tap a little icon on your smartphone homescreen, then speak and that message will be automatically delivered to your Plancake account. Sounds great!
 
Some bonuses: the app would store messages locally until it finds an available connection, and there may be some speech recognition going on.
 
This is going to be a big project which is going to take a lot of our resources. We would like to know what you think of the idea. 
Also, do you already use a similar system?
 
Moreover, as we are probably going to be very busy on the server side, is there any Android, iPhone and Blackberry developer who would like to be involved with this? If so, please contact us including your rate.
 
Please help us deliver a great new product.
 
Thanks for using Plancake,
Dan
 

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/04/new-project-idea-voice-recorder-for-memos--please-have-your-say Sun, 04 Mar 2012 20:43:21 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/04/new-project-idea-voice-recorder-for-memos--please-have-your-say
New feature coming soon: reorder the tasks due today As you probably noticed, you can't drag and drop tasks when you view your "Overdue & Today" screen.
That is something I have been really missing - and I haven't been the only one, as I received messages from some of you amazing Plancake users about that missing feature.

We have been pretty busy with other things but now we have decided to undertake that development - we hope to get it done by the end of this month.

Basically, you will be able to reorder your tasks due today by dragging and dropping them. As a bonus, we would like to be able to reschedule today's tasks to tomorrow just by dragging them to the 'tomorrow' section (color-coded blue).

We hope you think this is going to be useful for your day-to-day planning.

Have you got any comment or suggestion before we start working on the feature?

Thanks,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/04/new-feature-coming-soon-reorder-the-tasks-due-today Sun, 04 Mar 2012 20:00:10 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/04/new-feature-coming-soon-reorder-the-tasks-due-today
Translate Plancake and get a free Premium account (or extend your current one) We want Plancake to be used by as many people as possible around the world. For achieving that goal, we need your help.

We are looking for 2 translators for each language. We already have the full Italian translation and half of the Spanish and French ones.
So far, our translators have been brilliant - many thanks to Andrea, Roberto and Jerome!
 
If you help us with this we are going to give you a free Premium account for two years (or extend your current one by two years).
Also, as long as you help us maintain your translation, you can easily get your account extended year after year.
 
There are some important requirements before applying:
  • you love Plancake
  • you know the language you are going to translate to very well (native level)
  • your English is very good
  • you are a person who puts passion and commitment into his/her work
  • you are very professional when it comes to getting things done
  • you have a good knowledge of how Plancake works (and web applications in general)
  • you will be available to have a Skype video chat with me
We estimate the work would take around 10 hours for each translator. Very little maintenance will be required from time to time.
 
If you like, you will be also included on our 'Meet the Bakers' page:
 
If you are interested, please apply from our "Contact us" page.
 
There are people around the world waiting for your translation!
 
Thanks for being with us,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/04/translate-plancake-and-get-a-free-premium-account-or-extend-your-current-one Sun, 04 Mar 2012 19:20:03 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/03/04/translate-plancake-and-get-a-free-premium-account-or-extend-your-current-one
Rapidswitch, our hosting company, celebrates Plancake Day! For most people today is Pancake Day, but for Rapidswitch, the company taking care of our servers, today is Plancake Day!

It gives you a very warm feeling when your hosting company (which is only paid to provide you with infrastructure) calls to extend an offer to help one of their clients (me, in this case) with the launch of their product.

I would recommend Rapidswitch to anybody, not only because of this great gesture but also because, as you probably can testify, their servers are very stable and also offer a very good infrastructure for building great web apps.

Here is the link to the full press release:
http://www.rapidswitch.com/news/2012/02/rapidswitch-celebrate-plancake-day

Happy Plancake Day!
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/21/rapidswitch-our-hosting-company-celebrates-plancake-day Tue, 21 Feb 2012 18:32:11 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/21/rapidswitch-our-hosting-company-celebrates-plancake-day
Launched Gmail integration and improved Google Chrome extension We have launched a simple integration with Gmail - we may consider further developments down the line.

We hope this is going to help you manage your Gmail Inbox - dealing with all the emails coming in can be a bit daunting at times.
 
This new integration works even better with our Google Chrome extension that we have improved (it now supports task notes).
 
More details on our Services subpage:
 
Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/18/launched-gmail-integration-and-improved-google-chrome-extension Sat, 18 Feb 2012 18:46:21 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/18/launched-gmail-integration-and-improved-google-chrome-extension
Further improvements to the mobile app Over the last few weeks we have been focusing our attention on improving the mobile app.

Here is the list of the major changes:
  • while syncing, the feedback messages weren't clear at times - we have fixed that
  • on some mobile phones, it wasn't possible to add new tasks - we have fixed that
  • now, while adding a task, you can hit the Enter key to submit it
  • the calendar datepicker is much nicer and more usable
  • the calendar is much faster, also because we now display fewer days on each screen
  • the dialog windows have been improved
  • scrolling should be smoother
Unfortunately, as we did some core changes, you may need to clear your mobile browser cache in order to use the latest version. We apologize for that.
 
Behind the scenes, we have also made Plancake more robust against spammers trying to create accounts automatically - they don't realize Plancake is not a forum where they can post their spamming messages.
 
Hope you like the changes.
 
Happy Plancaking!
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/15/further-improvements-to-the-mobile-app Wed, 15 Feb 2012 19:36:00 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/15/further-improvements-to-the-mobile-app
Important improvements to the mobile app Over the last two weeks we have released a number of improvements to the Plancake HTML5 mobile web app:

  • major feature: you can now add tasks to any list, not just your Inbox
  • bug fix: on some mobile browsers, the syncing process was triggered twice on tapping the "sync" button
  • the "Overdue and Today" page now also shows the tasks due tomorrow, as it does for the web application (it is always a good idea to check what is due the next day)
  • we have added a button to reset the local data under the "Settings" menu (bottom of the screen)
  • we have removed an annoying flickering problem on page transitions that was affecting some Android users
  • other small bug fixes

Also we believe the web mobile application is now stable, thus we have decided to end its beta stage.

Happy Plancaking on the go!

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/03/big-improvements-to-the-mobile-app Fri, 03 Feb 2012 18:29:41 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/03/big-improvements-to-the-mobile-app
Plancake has officially launched today! Helping the world be more organised and relaxed. We have launched our platform Plancake.com today.

Building the platform has been a long and exciting journey - growing it will be even more exciting.

Thank you to everybody who contributed with their feedback to the product so far - we are grateful we have built Plancake with the help from our early adopters.

For this year we have great plans for helping you get even more things done with Plancake. We may even write a book about it - stay tuned! ;-)

Thank you!

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/01/plancake-has-officially-launched-today Wed, 01 Feb 2012 16:25:17 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/02/01/plancake-has-officially-launched-today
Being happier with 3 simple actions I believe that the pursuit of happiness is a long path, made of great choices in life, but also small daily achievements.

Unfortunately I have not yet found the perfect formula for happiness, however I have spotted some simple actions that have instantly transformed my state of mind, giving me a sense of enlightenment, determination and euphoria - I would call that happiness.

Here I want to talk to you about three methods, that have been extremely effective for me and helped me immediately feel better.

Confess Something You Feel Ashamed Of

Confessing something you are ashamed of takes away the power your weakness holds over you - it makes your shortcoming something you can handle, separate from yourself and eventually get rid of. 

Don't get me wrong - it is not about confessing your deepest secrets to the whole world- that's fairly outrageous. You have to carefully choose the people or person to whom you feel you can confess your weakness. This could be your parents, your partner or your friends.

Being yourself with these people, without having to pretend to be someone you're not or hide things from them, will give you an immediate sense of happiness - you may even find that  you have been too harsh with yourself.

Not only that, confessing something you would like to improve to people you care about is a great tool for personal development: from then on you will be responsible not only to yourself, but also to the people special to you, and you don't want them to lose their respect for you. Who knows, they may even give you great pieces of advice to help you improve on your shortcomings.
Either way, they will feel honored you have shared something important and personal with them and your relationship can't help but grow stronger.

Help Someone You Do Not Know

Have you ever wondered why almost no one refuses to give directions to a traveler?

Simple: it makes you feel good.

But what is it that makes you feel comfortable performing this small gesture? Try and guess. Yes, that's right, it is feeling useful that gives you a sense of happiness, together with the fact you feel you are contributing to make the world a better place.

Take advantage of opportunities that happen every day:

  • give up your seat on public transport
  • help a visitor who is struggling to understand which train they should jump on
  • help someone impaired cross the road

Relax and Feel Lucky for What You Have

When your life is mostly about emails, "to do" lists, and the office is probably when you are most in danger of being unhappy. You feel you are not in control of your life and you are just a machine for completing tasks. You may even start enjoying being overly busy to hide the realisation of how empty your life is becoming.

Plan a short trip, just for yourself to a nice place out of your city or town. Don't take any communication devices with you. Even leave your watch home.

Relax, appreciate how beautiful the world around you is and feel happy to have the chance to enjoy it. Think of all the people around you who are making your life so special, and how lucky you are being close to them.

 

Finally, don't forget that just reading this article is not going to make a change for yourself unless you decide to act (as long as you feel you can benefit from these ideas!)

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/29/how-to-be-happy-3-immediate-actions Thu, 29 Dec 2011 00:33:30 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/29/how-to-be-happy-3-immediate-actions
Our new HTML5 mobile web app is ready - old app removed from the Android market We have unpublished the Plancake application from the Android market. The reason is that we have recently developed an HTML5 mobile web application that has more functionalities and we want to focus our time on maintaining and improving only one mobile product.

If already installed, you can keep using the Android app as long as you like but you won't be able to install it again.

Thus, please direct your Android phone to www.plancake.com and start using the HTML5 mobile web application.

It works offline and you can also create a nice shortcut on your homescreen, as you would do with a native app.

Furthermore, the mobile web application works on most smartphones, so don't worry if you are planning to switch to iPhone.

This week we are focusing on making the mobile application more stable and powerful. If you find any issue on your smartphone while using Plancake mobile, please don't hesitate to contact us.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/10/plancake-app-removed-from-the-android-market--please-switch-to-the-html5-mobile-web-app Tue, 10 Jan 2012 14:09:05 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/10/plancake-app-removed-from-the-android-market--please-switch-to-the-html5-mobile-web-app
New video tutorial

Our brand new video tutorial is now online for everyone to enjoy! I'm hoping that even our most accustomed users will be enlightened while watching it.

The video is easily accessible from your account, but if you just cannot wait, here is the Youtube link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7gzpcWP6bYk

We are very proud as Ms. Emma Hignett accepted our invitation to feature in the voice over. Emma features in all the announcements played on the London buses, the stunning city where we are based. We are very pleased with the outcome and it has truly been a pleasure working with her.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/05/new-tutorial-video Thu, 05 Jan 2012 01:42:45 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/05/new-tutorial-video
Plancake.com is available even when an internet connection isn't!

We are very pleased to announce the release of a feature which we have been working on for some months now. Thanks to HTML5, a new cutting edge web technology, you will be able to use Plancake.com even when an internet connection is unavailable.

As is customary at Plancake.com, we have released a basic version initially, with further improvements to follow soon.

To learn more about this new feature, visit the link below:
https://www.plancake.com/services/offline-use

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/05/you-can-use-plancakecom-even-when-an-internet-connection-is-not-available Thu, 05 Jan 2012 01:06:53 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/05/you-can-use-plancakecom-even-when-an-internet-connection-is-not-available
Email Reminders are now available to Premium account holders Premium account holders can now enable email reminders from their Settings area.

When enabled, emails will be sent out in the early morning with all the tasks due on that day.

We believe you shouldn't normally need email reminders as it is a good practice to check your Plancake account every day, so that it becomes part of your routine and allows you to plan your activities more effectively.

However, as many users have requested this feature and it doesn't complicate the user interface, we saw no harm in implementing it. One of our top priorities is keeping the user interface streamlined, efficient and intuitive.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/03/email-reminders-are-now-available-to-premium-accounts Tue, 03 Jan 2012 12:10:23 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2012/01/03/email-reminders-are-now-available-to-premium-accounts
Lack of motivation? 10 actions for overcoming it Lack of motivation happens to everyone when facing certain tasks, especially when it's something they don't like doing, or are attempting while not in the best possible condition mentally or physically.

Here are some tips that usually work for me.

  1. Simply start. As they say, appetite comes with eating. If you don't feel like studying, just open the book and start reading the first paragraph. If you don't feel like going to the gym, just wear your sneakers, grab your bag and get out. Don't think : when you're unmotivated, your brain will attempt to give you good reasons not to do what you should. Just start, everything else will follow naturally.
  2. Turn your goals into 1 hour actions. Important objectives can take months or even years and that makes it easy for you to lose motivation. In these cases try to break down your project into smaller and smaller actions, until you find an action that can be started immediately and completed within one hour.
  3. Set a challenging deadline. Very often the more time you have the more you waste it. If things are not getting set into motion, set a challenging deadline and start a timer. A timer in a very visible place will create a sense of challenge and urgency. These two elements are very effective motivators.
  4. Don't burn the stages. At the beginning of a project or when you set a new goal, your motivation is sky high, but it soon fades. If you want to keep up your level of motivation, learn not to burn yourself out in the early stages. You've decided to start running? Don't run 3 miles the first day: start with small steps and gradually increase. This way you distribute your initial motivation.
  5. Record your progress. There is nothing more motivating than having a list of tasks and canceling them as you complete them. It is a physical action that brings you closer to the goal. Recording your progress creates a virtuous circle as it feels good to put more and more checkmarks on your piece of paper (or Plancake list).
  6. Reward yourself. When setting a goal, try to decide right away what you are going to give to yourself once you hit it. Every time you reach even a small goal, learn to reward yourself - people like rewards and they look forward to them.
  7. Write down 10 reasons for your goal.  It's very difficult to reach a challenging goal without the right motivation. If you are unmotivated, take a sheet of paper and start to write down 10 reasons why you want to achieve your goal: how will you feel once you've completed it? What will you get? How will other people look at you once you have reached it? You want to go back to work now, right?! ;-)
  8. Put a picture that reminds you of your goal in a very visible place. You often are not motivated just because you forget your goals. Try to put images that remind you of your target in highly visible places: on the fridge, on the wall opposite your bed or on the steering wheel of your car.
  9. Focus on your goal and how to get there for 5 minutes a day. I believe that focus and action are the two essential ingredients for success. Close your eyes and visualize yourself working hard towards your goal and finally hitting it. That's pure motivation. 
  10. Talk about your goal to important people in your life. Have you tried all nine strategies I told you about and you're still staring at the blank page in front of you? Well, then it's time for making you more responsible! Tell your goal to someone important in your life, whom you can't afford to disappoint- a person who will support you in difficult times and scold you when you're sluggish.

 

Finally, don't forget that just reading this article is not going to make any change within yourself unless you decide to act (as long as you feel these ideas would be beneficial!)

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/29/lack-of-motivation-10-actions-to-combat Thu, 29 Dec 2011 00:34:37 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/29/lack-of-motivation-10-actions-to-combat
Plancake offers discounts to good causes At Plancake.com we love our product. The only thing missing is that our company is not a social enterprise. Yes, we are helping a lot of people take control over the things they need to do and thus be more relaxed and happy. However, that is not enough to make Danyuki Software Limited a social enterprise.

So we thought we could increase our "social component" by helping social enterprises and charities in their missions.

Therefore, if you are working for a charity or social enterprise and you are interested in the Plancake Premium account to aid you with your work for them, please contact us to apply for some discounts on Plancake services.

Let's work together to make the world a better place!

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/31/plancake-to-offer-discounts-to-good-causes Sat, 31 Dec 2011 00:36:48 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/31/plancake-to-offer-discounts-to-good-causes
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year with our 20% off promotion We have decided to run a promotion during festive season: enter the promotional code XMAS2011 to get 20% off a Premium account or 20% of a subscription renewal.
This promotion will run untill Midnight 2nd of January 2012 (GMT) and is available to the first 100 orders!

Ensure you are logged in and then use the link below to upgrade your account (don't forget to enter the promotional code!):
https://www.plancake.com/account.php/upgrade

After the beta period that ended a few days ago, we have decided to raise the limit of available lists and tags for free users respectively to 20 and 5. We needed the beta period to test not only the software but the business model too.

We are aiming at releasing simple email notifications (for Premium users only) and Offline Support (we are still undecided if this will be limited to premium users only) before the beginning of next year.

I would like to thank you all for your support and patience during this pre-launch period and to let you know we are very excited for the Plancake launch very early next year.

Finally, from all of us at Plancake, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/22/merry-christmas-and-happy-new-year-with-our-20-off-promotion Thu, 22 Dec 2011 14:10:03 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/22/merry-christmas-and-happy-new-year-with-our-20-off-promotion
Mobile app is not read-only anymore + we are about to discontinue our Android app We have released a major update for the mobile app. You are now able to add tasks to your Inbox (via a form on the homepage) and mark tasks as done (just click or hold them to access the task menu).

We have decided to withdraw the Android application from the market as it is causing issues for a number of users. You should stop using it and move to the web mobile version: just login to Plancake as usual but from your smartphone.
 
We should have also fixed the issue some users have reported about needing to log in almost every time they access the mobile app. Please let us know if you still encounter that problem.
 
The web mobile version has all the features of the native Android application further features will be added prior to the official launch on the 4th of January and will be continually improved.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/09/mobile-app-is-not-readonly-anymore--we-are-about-to-discontinue-our-android-app Fri, 09 Dec 2011 15:28:48 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/09/mobile-app-is-not-readonly-anymore--we-are-about-to-discontinue-our-android-app
Improved Calendar within the web application and an end to the beta stage We have released an improvement to the Calendar portion of the web application. You now have a button next to each day which allows you to add a task to that specific date.

There has also been a bug fixed on the notebook: some special non-English language characters were corrupted. Please let us know if you are still encountering problems.
 
We are going to release some other improvements before the official launch on the 4th of January - and also later on in next year.
 
We have also decided that Plancake can now leave the beta stage as we believe it has reached a good level of stability.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/09/improved-the-calendar-of-the-web-application-and-end-of-the-beta-stage Fri, 09 Dec 2011 15:34:44 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/12/09/improved-the-calendar-of-the-web-application-and-end-of-the-beta-stage
Second release of the Mobile app - it works offline now! The second release of the Mobile app is ready - just log in to plancake.com with your smartphone and start using it.

This release introduces offline support: you can now use Plancake Mobile on the go, even when an Internet connection is not available! This is possible thanks to HTML5, a very new Internet technology which is revolutionising the Web.

The app is read-only for now. We are pushing forward in order to allow you to add tasks to your Inbox and mark tasks as done within the next couple of days.

After that, we will keep on improving it (above all the Calendar needs some more attention) and adding new features.

As always, don't hesitate to contact us if you encounter any problems.

UPDATE: Quite a few users have reported problems on different platforms. We are working hard and will try to fix them as fast as we can. We are sorry for the inconvenience caused: the fact is that we are using a cutting edge technology which is not even completely standardised yet.
We are confident that the mobile application is going to be as stable as the web application soon. Thanks for your patience.

 

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/11/28/second-release-of-the-mobile-app Mon, 28 Nov 2011 17:02:38 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/11/28/second-release-of-the-mobile-app
Improvements to the first version of Plancake Mobile

Based on your feedback, we have made some improvements over the initial release of the app for smartphones:

  • the Plancake logo shouldn't be cut off any more (we may resize it a little bit in the future)

  • when you create a short cut on your home screen you should get the Plancake logo as the icon

  • when the app is loaded, it should automatically enter "full screen" mode

  • we have moved the refresh button at the top

  • we have made the font colour a bit darker for better readability

  • the details about the task (tags, date, time, ...) are shown in a more readable way

  • we have redesigned the login page to look better on mobile devices

  • we have created a documentation page for the mobile app that we are going to update as we proceed with the development - you can find the link at the bottom in the navigation bar of the web application

Something we would be very interested to have feedback on is whether you can read the task note once you tap on the note icon. We would very much appreciate it if you could let us know either by contacting us directly, or posting in the comments below.

 

We are currently working on making Plancake Mobile work off-line. We aim to release that important functionality in the next few days.

 

Thanks for all your feedback.

 

Happy plancaking,

Dan


 

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/11/12/improvements-to-the-first-version-of-plancake-mobile Sat, 12 Nov 2011 16:44:59 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/11/12/improvements-to-the-first-version-of-plancake-mobile
Very first version of the Plancake mobile app just launched We are very excited to announce that the Plancake mobile app has been launched.
 
It is a very early version, but still, it is a great milestone for the product.
 
This first version is read-only and doesn't work without an Internet connection. By read-only, I mean you can see your tasks but you can't edit them or add new ones.
 
We aim to launch the second version which is going to work offline (but still read-only) in about ao week.
 
In 2 or 3 weeks we should be able to provide you with a full-featured mobile app (at that stage we may still not have all the functionalities of the web app but it will improve over time).
Also, something we would love to add sooner rather than later is voice-recording or voice-to-text functionality.
 
As you may already know, the Plancake mobile app is not a native app (it may become it later on) - that means you use it via a web browsers and it should work on the vast majority of modern smartphones.
 
In order to use the mobile app, just login to Plancake with your smartphone as you would do from your laptop/desktop using the web browser.
 
If the native browser on your mobile doesn't work very well with Plancake (maybe because your handset is a bit old), please try using Opera Mobile - it's a great browser that supports a lot of modern features.
 
I bet there will be a lot of tiny little problems given the variety of devices you guys own - not to panic! We are going to sort things out.
 
At this stage your feedback is *vital*. If you encounter any issue, please report it, together with some details of your device.
 
It would also be very interesting to understand how easy it is to bookmark the Plancake app on the home screen of your mobile. Please let us know about that, too.
 
Your feedback would be really appreciated as we want to set up comprehensive documentation on how to use different smartphones with Plancake so that we will spend less time supporting new users in their initial mobile setup and more time improving the product.
 
Happy mobile-plancaking :-)
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/11/07/very-first-version-of-the-plancake-mobile-app-just-launched Mon, 07 Nov 2011 23:26:32 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/11/07/very-first-version-of-the-plancake-mobile-app-just-launched
New design, some improvements and fixed bug with printing I am sure you have noticed the facelift we have made to the web app. The guys at Three TEN Seven Design have been great!
We hope you like it - as always, any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

We also released a nice improvement: when you edit a task/list/tag, you can now submit by hitting the Enter key - you don't need to click the 'save' button anymore.

We also fixed quite an annoying bug. Premium users on Google Chrome and Safari had some issues with the print functionality. The issue should be gone now - confirmation of that would be much appreciated!
Unfortunately there is a little caveat: you need to reload the page after clicking the print button. Sorry for that - we may be able to improve it some more in the future.

We are also aiming to have a preview of the mobile application within one week or so.

On a final note, many thanks to Philip and Pawel for submitting a testimonial that is going to be very important for our growth: sitting on the homepage, it will encourage more people to sign up.

Happy plancaking to all of you :-)

Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/10/27/new-design-some-improvements-and-fixed-bug-with-printing Thu, 27 Oct 2011 12:13:35 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/10/27/new-design-some-improvements-and-fixed-bug-with-printing
New calendar released We thought a proper calendar was something important and missing in Plancake so we decided to develop it.
 
In the bottom bar of your account, you can now find a new button 'Calendar' that has replaced the old button 'With date'.
With our new Calendar you can see all the occurrences of recurring tasks.
 
As always, any feedback on this new feature is more than welcome.
 
We have also fixed a major bug in Internet Explorer that was preventing the account page from showing up under certain circumstances.
 
In the next two weeks we are going to deploy a new design for the website, do some more usability improvements, create some tutorial videos and try to develop email reminders for Premium accounts.
 
After that, we will finally start with the offline support and mobile application.
 
Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/10/13/released-a-new-calendar Thu, 13 Oct 2011 12:15:06 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/10/13/released-a-new-calendar
We have introduced important changes in Plancake. This release has introduced important changes in Plancake.
 
First of all, the Todo list has been renamed to 'Default list' for clarity. If you don't like the new name you can rename it (even back to 'Todo' :-) ).
 
We have added two new filters at the top of every list of tasks: one to hide scheduled tasks and one to sort tasks by due date or drag and drop order.
 
That also allowed us to eliminate the idiosyncrasy around the Todo list - it used to be the only list where scheduled tasks were hidden by default. Now it lists all of them (as for any other list) - if you want to hide scheduled tasks, just use the new filter.
 
Up until a few days ago, I bet you had this annoying problem: you were clicking on a list or task and the system was mistaking that as an attempt of dragging the item. Well, we should have eliminated that problem now.
 
Also, the divider between the two task panes is not draggable anymore - that was causing problems with some browsers and, anyway, I would say that is not longer needed as you can easily hide the right pane (by clicking on the divider itself or on one of the buttons at the top of the right pane).
 
From today, new free users won't be able to manage more than 10 lists or 4 tags - that is also going to be the case for old users from the 26th of October.
Thanks to all users who have decided to upgrade to the Premium account in this transition period. If you haven't done so, please consider doing it from here:
 
What we are going to work on starting from today is a better calendar view and email reminders for Premium accounts - we hope we can deliver both of them within days.
 
We have also decided to delay the development of an improved payment system with consequential price rise for Premium accounts. That's because we want to prioritise the development of a mobile app as a lot of you are asking for it.
 
Happy plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/10/06/we-have-introduced-important-changes-in-plancake Thu, 06 Oct 2011 12:51:18 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/10/06/we-have-introduced-important-changes-in-plancake
Important changes: new features in the pipeline, increase in subscription charges and alteration to free account allowances

As you probably know, we are soon launching the improved Plancake. 

Before doing that, we feel there are things we should change in order to keep the business viable and allow it to grow. We have decided to increase the price of the Supporter account. It is now going to cost in the region of $5 per month and be renamed to something more "conventional", such as 'Premium' or 'Pro'.

This change reflects all the improvements we have done recently and those we are in the process of delivering. The cost and pricing structure alterations will take place in about 2 weeks. If you were thinking of upgrading in the near future, it may be a good idea to do it now!

We have also decided to make some changes to allowances on free accounts and limit the maximum number of lists, tags and notes. We believe if users require over a certain amount of lists, it means they are relying quite heavily on Plancake and it is fair to ask them to contribute to the product. These limitations will take effect in about a week.

Within the next couple of weeks we are aiming to introduce two new features: an improved Calendar view (for everybody) and email notifications (for Supporters only). In addition, for the start of November we would like to be ready with two great features we have been planning for some time: an offline mode and a mobile application for any modern smartphone.

Tristan and Jackie (the logo creators) are helping with the new design of the website. They are doing a great job and we are excited about the usability and aesthetic improvements they are implementing.

During this redesign, we are also going to add some further testimonials to our homepage. If you feel Plancake has benefited you in any way, please let us know as we would love to make your feelings heard!

 

Happy Plancaking,

Dan

 

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/09/21/important-changes-subscription-price-to-be-increased-new-limitations-to-free-accounts-and-new-features-coming-soon Wed, 21 Sep 2011 21:25:07 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/09/21/important-changes-subscription-price-to-be-increased-new-limitations-to-free-accounts-and-new-features-coming-soon
Search available to Supporters and a lot of usability improvements This is a big update with new features and a lot of improvements.

 
The new features are:
  • Supporters can now search their tasks - sorry it has taken a while to implement that feature
  • the quote of the day is back (yeah!) - to read it, use the navigation on the bottom-left corner
 
 
There are also some usability improvements:
  • if you add a task that doesn't belong to the current list, the task is shown anyway with a transparency so that you can easily double-check it looks correct
  • if you use the options when adding a task, the options form doesn't slide up automatically after submitting - this allows you to use the some options for several tasks you may want to add in quick succession
  • you now have a little button next to the Lists header (in the left column) to collapse the lists so that you can access your tags quicker
  • you can also hide the secondary tasks pane (the column on the right) - we did this because some users told us they would prefer to have a more 'traditional' layout
  • you will see some hint boxes here and there that can help you understand better how to use Plancake - if you don't need them you can easily hide them
  • we have moved the Settings link inside the navigation bar on the bottom-left corner to keep the user interface less cluttered.
 
 
We have also fixed all the open bugs for the new interface - if you find new ones please let us know so we can fix them.
 
 
An important change we are going to make is that the history of completed tasks will cover 6 months for Supporters and only 2 months for non-Supporters.
We decided as Plancake is not really very focused on what it has been done but on what needs to be done. We believe giving a longer history
wouldn't make any difference to our users.
Keeping the number of old completed tasks lower will keep the Plancake database slim and consequentially the web app will stay very responsive.
Please let us know if you have any problems with this change.
 
 
Happy plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/09/08/search-available-to-supporters-and-a-lot-of-usability-improvements Thu, 08 Sep 2011 14:05:30 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/09/08/search-available-to-supporters-and-a-lot-of-usability-improvements
Plancake has been invited to take part in the StartupBritain campaign. We are so delighted we have been invited to take part in the StartupBritain campaign.

StartupBritain is a campaign supported by the UK Government aimed to nurture entrepreneurship in the UK.

One of their initiatives is driving a bus through all the big cities in the UK packed with business experts, award winners and other business owners.

You will find me at its stop in London on the 26th of August from 3pm till 6pm.

This is the full address:

Waterloo Place, between 16-23 Pall Mall, Westminster, London, UK

I would love to see a lot of you there!

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/08/24/plancake-has-been-invited-to-take-part-of-the-startup-britain-initiative Wed, 24 Aug 2011 20:00:36 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/08/24/plancake-has-been-invited-to-take-part-of-the-startup-britain-initiative
We are one of the winners of the Shell LiveWire Awards, which gave us £1000 grant! Great news!

Plancake has won a Shell LiveWIRE Grand Ideas Award. We are so proud to have won such a prestigious award.

That will also give the company a no-strings-attached financial boost of £1,000.

The first round of seletion was very tough - we worked very hard to impress the panel of judges with our exciting plan for the future. And, in the second round, we made it thanks to your votes. A very big thank you to all of you!

We are going to spend the grant mainly on improving our brand identity and get PR coverage for our upcoming launch (we are still in beta with important features yet to come) - this will help us acquire a bigger share of the market and increase the turnover which will allow us to improve the product even further.

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/08/24/we-are-one-of-the-winners-of-the-shell-livewire-award-which-includes-1000-grant Wed, 24 Aug 2011 19:58:15 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/08/24/we-are-one-of-the-winners-of-the-shell-livewire-award-which-includes-1000-grant
Print functionality + some bug fixes First of all, I would like to thank you for all your feedback and support during the past few weeks following the release of Plancake2.

In this release we have done some bug-fixing including solving a problem which stopped some tasks being marked as done (introduced by the previous release).

We have also added an important piece of functionality for our Supporters: you can print the list of tasks from the left pane.
Please let me know if you experience any problems with it.

One minor change in this release is that we have swapped the 'news' and 'settings' buttons (both on the bottom bar).
Sorry for that change but we believe it will make the interface more intuitive.

What we are going to do next is:

  • fix other minor bugs
  • add a search functionality
  • add some small features
  • bring back displaying the 'quote of the day' (I know many of you are missing this!)

 

Once those things are done, we are going to build a single mobile app (with offline support) which is going to work on the vast majority of smartphones.

Now, I would really appreciate your help with this.
Do you remember when you registered you had two lists by default, 'Inbox' and 'Todo'?
Some new users have told me they were expecting to see all of their todos from other lists inside 'Todo' - which is not the case.
I am thinking we should rename 'Todo' to make its functionality clearer, as it is just one of the lists you can have on your account - nothing very special about it.
Maybe 'Next Actions' could be a good name but I would prefer something not too gtd-related in order to be friendly also with people who are not using GTD.
Please write a comment below or contact me with your ideas.

Happy plancaking!
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/08/12/print-functionality--some-bug-fixes Fri, 12 Aug 2011 14:50:16 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/08/12/print-functionality--some-bug-fixes
Plancake has been shortlisted for this month 'Shell Grand Ideas Award' - £1000 to be won! Amazing news.

Plancake has been shortlisted for the 'Shell Grand Ideas Award'.

The Shell LiveWIRE prize of £1000 is to award young entrepreneurs with innovative business ideas in the UK.

You can help us win that fund by voting for our video.

This will take you around one minute and will be very much appreciated as it would help us develop the project further if we were to win.

You need to register to the Shell community (you need to fill all the fields marked with asterisk - if you don't find your country select 'Rest of the World')...
https://www.shell-livewire.org/register/

...and click on the link 'Cast My Vote'
My video is the one on the top left corner.

If you can't see the page with the videos, you can go to this link:
http://www.shell-livewire.org/my-business-kit/

Please vote now as the voting is closing soon.

Thanks for your help,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/07/17/plancake-has-been-shortlisted-for-this-month-shell-grand-ideas-award Sun, 17 Jul 2011 21:05:59 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/07/17/plancake-has-been-shortlisted-for-this-month-shell-grand-ideas-award
Plancake2 is out! I am very happy to announce Plancake 2 is out.

It is basically a huge change to the interface of the program - the functionality has stayed the same.
It comes from the feedback we have received from you guys over time and from some interesting ideas we had.

We have spent a lot of time and energy on it and we hope you are going to love it.

A much requested feature is that you can now rename the 'Todo' list if you want (i.e. to 'Next actions').

Over the next few days, we are going to improve the interface with minor changes.

We are also going to add Search and Print functionalities soon - probably only for Supporters.

Please, if you have time, any feedback would be much appreciated.

Happy plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/07/17/plancake2-is-out Sun, 17 Jul 2011 18:35:26 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/07/17/plancake2-is-out
How to use the Parkinson's Law to your advantage A practical application of Parkinson's Law is to improve your time management in order to do double the amount of things in half the time.

Each subject has got its laws: there are the laws of thermodynamics, Kepler's law... and Murphy's Law ! ;-)
The world of efficiency and productivity has its own commandments too.

In this article I will talk about one of these commandments, and how you can exploit it in order to do double the amount of things in half the time.

The Parkinson's Law

"Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."
Cyril N. Parkinson

Another way to say that is:

"The more time you have for completing a task, the more time you will waste."

Probably those principles do not sound entirely new, right? :-)
Don't you remember? The time at university, when you found out you had an extra week to prepare for an exam but you left your studying until midnight the day before anyway.
Do you remember that bill? You knew its due date 2 months in advance, but you almost risked the late-payment penalty fee by leaving it till the last minute.
Not to mention that project at work - the deadline got pushed back, but you ended up in a worse state than before!

If it is true that the more time we have, the more we waste, the opposite is also true: when time is short, we tend to work on priorities and be more efficient.

 

Less time = more motivation

A stringent deadline forces us to focus on what we have to deliver - the risk of failing to complete the work and the possible negative consequences motivate us.

Think in terms of "carrot and stick" - the scarcity of time is definitely the "stick", and therefore not very pleasant, but the point is that...it works. If you're a hopeless procrastinator, you know that a looming deadline is, sometimes, the only incentive that pushes you to act.

So let's see how we can use the Parkinson's Law to do more stuff with less time.

Practical application

While I was wondering what could be the most effective practical example to show you the results when turning Parkinson's Law to your advantage, I realized that I was applying it without realizing.
The countdown on my Android phone marks now 5 minutes and 22 seconds. It was set on 30 minutes before starting to write this article.

When you have to complete a task, try and implement these steps:

  • estimate how long it may take you to complete the task
  • divide that time by 2
  • set up a timer where you can easily see it
  • off you go!

 

Having a challenging deadline for completing a task gives you the impetus to act immediately and allows you to focus on your goal without getting lost in distractions (nowadays there are so many distraction on the Internet!).

A tip: be careful not to over do it! Impossible deadlines are likely to be counter-productive. If you decide to write the Divine Comedy in 3 minutes, you will only get not being able to meet your deadline as a result - you will be more demotivated than before, will set another impossible deadline and fall into a vicious circle that will make you lose time and motivation. Keep your deadlines challenging but realistic.

Do you use similar tricks to apply the Parkinson's Law to your advantage? Please, share them with us!

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/07/07/how-to-use-the-parkinsons-law-to-your-advantage Thu, 07 Jul 2011 14:13:40 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/07/07/how-to-use-the-parkinsons-law-to-your-advantage
Effectiveness: 3 definitions you would not expect Pragmatic definitions of efficiency are to learn how to do the right things, with the best strategies and the proper amount of resources.

If you look in a dictionary, you will find that the term efficiency is derived from the Latin verb efficiere, indicating the action of making, producing.
It is defined as effective, the act that produces effect, and specifically that has enough strength and power to achieve a given effect.

However have you ever wondered what it means to be truly effective?

Here are three unique and original definitions of effectiveness and some practical advice for applying them.

Definition 1: the right things

"Efficiency is doing things right, effectiveness is doing the right things."
Peter F. Drucker

As suggested by Peter Drucker, if efficient are those who do things the right way, effective are those who make the right things. The effectiveness must therefore come before the efficiency: it makes no sense to wake up at 5 am, work until late at night with discipline, determination and sacrifice if what we are doing is the wrong things!

If you want to make sure you are doing the right things, you are pursuing the right goals, you should answer some questions:

  • can I find 10 good reasons to pursue this goal?
  • will what I am doing now make sense in 5 years?
  • am I seeking immediate pleasure or long-term happiness?
The next time you have the feeling of being on a train hurtling at 250 km/h without a goal, please stop, get off at the next station, and try to ask yourself those 3 simple questions.

Definition 2: the toothpaste tube

Imagine you're the new sales director of a company producing toothpaste and you need to increase sales volume by 10% in order to bring home your great annual bonus. What do you think the most effective strategy would be to achieve your goal?!

  • increase investment in advertising?
  • cut prices?
  • apply the super-duper-psycho-cross-promotional-with-strategic-venture-and-viral-video technique?!?

Have you found a solution? Try and think outside-the-box.

Here is the solution adopted by a well known multinational consumer products.
They increased the diameter of the tube-mouth. Customers will not notice the difference, but a squeeze of the tube will produce more toothpaste. Increasing the diameter 4,8% will increase the area by 10%. That's it.
To be honest I don't like what they did (they basically fooled their customers) - it was just a good example of efficiency.

Effectiveness is the ability to find simple solutions to complex problems.

Every time you're facing a problem, don't try and articulate complex solutions: ask yourself what a 3 year old child would do! Stay simple.

Definition 3: the $500,000/year banker

Who do you think earns more: a banker with a salary of $500,000/year or a freelance photographer with a revenue of $100,000/year?
The answer seems obvious. I'll try and rephrase the question.

Do you think a banker, who works 16 hours a day for 6 days a week, with a salary of $500,000/year earns more than a freelance photographer who works 2 hours a day for 4 days a week, with revenues of $100,000/year?

Effectiveness is to maximize the outcome while minimizing the use of resources.

If you want to work effectively try this little exercise:

  • think of how much time/money/resources you would need to do some activities
  • divide that value by 10
  • think of 5 improbable strategies that would allow you to reach that goal with the new amount of resources
Being effective is not just being able to produce an effect: to be effective means to choose the right goals on which to engage, find simple and original strategies to achieve those objectives and while using the right amount of resources.

If you liked the article, please don't forget to share it with your friends.

Why don't you share with us how you try to be effective?

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/06/29/effectiveness-3-definitions-you-would-not-expect Wed, 29 Jun 2011 23:26:23 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/06/29/effectiveness-3-definitions-you-would-not-expect
Plancake Google Chrome extension is now available We have just released the Google Chrome extension for Plancake.

I find it very useful.

You definitely have to install it if you are on Google Chrome. If you are not using Google Chrome, you should start using Google Chrome and install the extension :-)

At some point, we would like to add two other functionalities to the extension:

  • be able to see your Inbox and check stuff off
  • same for Today's tasks

 

We would also like to port the extension to Firefox.

Now I want to focus on getting the new user interface ready as soon as possible.

If there are any developers who would like to lend a helping hand, please contact us. That would be very much appreciated.

As usual, the extension is Open Source.

Hopefully it will be easy for you to find out how to install the extension. If not, let me know and I will help you and make it easier to find.

Happy plancaking [in Chrome],
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/28/plancake-google-chrome-extension-is-now-available Sat, 28 May 2011 09:41:11 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/28/plancake-google-chrome-extension-is-now-available
Would you like to translate Plancake and get a free Supporter account? We are ready to conquer the whole world! :-)

If you know a language very well (native level) other than Italian and English, please help us.

There are other important requirements:

  • you love Plancake
  • you are a person who puts passion and commitment into your work
  • your English is very good
  • you have a basic knowledge of HTML (if not, we can train you)
  • you have a good knowledge of how Plancake (and web applications in general) work
  • you must have filled our survey - actually we can't check you did, but it is very important for the new Plancake which is coming soon :-)
    http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/68XNBSF

 

The job is about translating the public website and all the text in the account section. It would take around 10 hours. That's quite a lot. Which is why we would like to get 2 users for each language (in that way, they can also review each other's work).

Before selecting a translator, I would like to have a video chat on Skype with them.

All our translators will get a free annual subscription and will be included on our 'Meet the Bakers' page:
http://www.plancake.com/team

And while you will be translating, I am going to keep on working on the new user interface that will even work offline: I'm looking forward to it!

If you are interested, please get in touch.

Thanks for being from all over the world :-)
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/22/would-you-like-to-translate-plancake-and-get-a-free-supporter-account Sun, 22 May 2011 22:55:42 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/22/would-you-like-to-translate-plancake-and-get-a-free-supporter-account
Next challenge: making Plancake work offline As we are going to rebuild the Plancake User Interface from the ground-up to make it even better, we want to do it in a very innovative way.

That's why we are going to use HTML5, the latest standard for the Web.

HTML5 will help us achieve our dream goal to make Plancake work even without an Internet connection being available. It sounds like magic and that would be extremely useful.

We hope that will give us also the chance to add a search functionality to the web application.

We have already started working on it over the last few days. It will probably take around one month to complete.

Some more good news is that once we get Plancake working offline, it should be pretty easy to port it to a range of mobile devices, using the PhoneGap project.

If you are a software developer and you want to get involved in such a cutting-edge project, please contact us.

Happy plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/17/next-challenge-make-plancake-work-offline Tue, 17 May 2011 21:51:20 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/17/next-challenge-make-plancake-work-offline
New User Interface coming soon: we need your feedback! We are very happy to announce we are starting to redesign the Plancake user interface from the ground-up.

We want Plancake to be even more easy-to-use, fun and intuitive.

Basically we are going to keep the underlying structure (a task belongs to a list, can have a note and some tags associated with it) but we are going to rebuild the way you interact with the whole system.

These are the main changes we are thinking of introducing:

  • the printer-friendly version of the page will look better
  • it will be more intuitive how to access the list of completed tasks
  • you will be able to create tags on the fly while adding a task
  • the list of tasks won't be splitted into "Tasks with due date" and "Tasks without due date" but you will be able to order tasks by creation date, sort order or due date
  • you will be able to drag and drop items without the need of clicking the reorder icon first
  • when you add a task, the feedback message will tell you exactly which list the task has been added to
  • the shortcuts for due dates and repetitions will be more powerful
  • we are thinking to keep headers: they are not perfect but I think they are useful

This is the perfect time to give us any suggestion about how you would like Plancake to look. Just leave a comment to this post.

We have also created a survey (our first survey!). It will take just a few minutes for you to complete and it would help us a lot with improving the product.
None of the questions are mandatory:
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/68XNBSF (English version)
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ZRCK38Z (Italian version)

Happy feedbacking! :-)
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/16/new-user-interface-coming-soon-we-need-your-feedback Mon, 16 May 2011 00:25:31 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/16/new-user-interface-coming-soon-we-need-your-feedback
Plancake is Open Source We are very excited to announce that Plancake is now Open Source. Not only the web application, but also the Android application.

The license we have released the source code under is the AGPL, which is a license approved by the Open Source Initiative. That basically means you have the right to study, modify, use and redistribute the code (as long as the copy you redistribute is still licensed under the AGPL).

What is going to change for you now?

Well, if you are a software developer, you may want to install Plancake on your server or the Android app on your mobile phone, and change them to fit your needs.

Even if you are not a developer, this will bring great benefits to you:
1) the more people can access the source code, the better that code can get because of their feedback
2) the project may move faster as there will probably be more developers involved
3) but, above all, if we "become evil" (I mean if we start being unreasonable with our users), some nice guy can easily create a clone of Plancake where users can move to.

The third point sounds pretty scary for a business like we are, but I think it is more effective than a myriad of well-crafted paragraphs for showing you how committed we are to providing a great service to you. We are confident this "brave" move will bring great benefits to the Plancake project.

Does this piece of news means the core team is going to stop developing and leave the community alone to improve the product? Absolutely not: for the coming two months we have great plans. Give us few days and we will share them with you.

Unfortunately installing Plancake on your server is not the easiest task in this world due to the fact the software framework we use is more focused on security and stability than simplicity of installation. But we are looking forward to getting in touch with some developers who would like to make the Plancake installation a breeze.

Please visit this page if you want to download the Plancake source code: http://www.plancake.com/open-source

A special thank to Jack who was so blazing fast in reviewing the new text for this release.

Happy plancaking [even on your own server],
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/10/plancake-is-open-source Tue, 10 May 2011 11:54:58 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/10/plancake-is-open-source
The Google Calendar Integration is now available to all our users Around 2 weeks ago we launched the Google Calendar Integration.

The feature was initially available to only Supporter accounts.

We have changed direction and we have made it available to all our users.

So, there is no excuse for not trying it out now.

If, in the last two weeks, you have bought a Supporter account just because you thought that was the only way to get the Google Calendar Integration, just contact us and we will give you a full refund.

Thanks for using Plancake,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/08/the-google-calendar-integration-is-now-available-to-all-our-users Sun, 08 May 2011 16:03:55 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/05/08/the-google-calendar-integration-is-now-available-to-all-our-users
Plancake is going to become Open Source [again] very soon I think this is amazing news. I am really excited about it.

We have just started working to make Plancake Open Source.

That means that, if you are a developer and have your own server, you can run Plancake on it.

Also users who are not developers will benefit from that. There will be more bug fixes and the development of extra functionalities should be quicker.

Obviously, that doesn't mean we are going to stop or slow down the development ourselves.
It doesn't mean the quality of the code will decrease, either. On the contrary, the more people can see the code, the more improvements can be made to it.

Obviously we will review and test any improvements or bug fixes from the community before it goes live to the online web application that all of us are using.

Maybe somebody remembers Plancake used to be Open Source but, back in December 2010, we stopped making its code available, at least momentarily. We said we may have made Plancake Open Source back again. And here we are. Luckily we have sorted some legal concerns we had about it.

This change should keep ourselves busy till mid May. After that, there will be another great change I am really looking forward to.

One more thing.
We are going to rename the 'Supporter account' to 'Pro account' for clarity. That won't cause any change to you.

Happy Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/29/plancake-is-going-to-become-open-source-again-very-soon Fri, 29 Apr 2011 17:37:34 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/29/plancake-is-going-to-become-open-source-again-very-soon
Google Calendar Integration launched - that was a tough job! We are very glad to announce the Google Calendar Integration is now available to our Supporter users.

Non-Supporter users can upgrade clicking the 'upgrade' link on their accounts:
https://www.plancake.com/account.php/subscribe

Still for the next two weeks, we offer a free 2-week trial of the Supporter account.

This launch is of a two-way integration, meaning that not only changes in Plancake are reflected on Google Calendar straightaway but also viceversa.
I would say we are one of the few products in our market offering this functionality.

The development of this feature has been extremely difficult due to some idiosyncrasies on the Google Calendar end.
We have noticed Google Calendar may start to behave inaccurately after some use.

Obviously we didn't like that.

At some point, we were even thinking of providing only one-way integration, that is, you can only see Plancake tasks on Google Calendar but you can't create or edit them.
But that was even worse. With one-way integration (done by subscribing to an iCal feed on Google Calendar), Google takes *hours* between updates. That means, if you were to update a task on Plancake, you needed to wait 2/3 hours before you could see the change reflected on Google Calendar.

We were even thinking of dropping this feature. But we were aware of how useful to you this feature could be. So we finally decided to go for the two-way integration and give you an easy way to reset the integration in case Google Calendar shows some behaviour which is not right.

For those of you who are into programming: we have powered this feature by using the Google Calendar API via the Zend Gdata library (Zend has done another great job with this library).

You can activate the integration from your account Settings area or from the 'All scheduled' filter.

Any issue, please let us know.

Happy Plancaking and Google Calendaring :-)
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/22/google-calendar-integration-launched--that-was-a-tough-job Fri, 22 Apr 2011 12:04:07 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/22/google-calendar-integration-launched--that-was-a-tough-job
You can now export (backup) your data and import them back We are very happy to announce you can now export all your account data (tags, lists, tasks and note) and you can even import them back.

That is ideal if you want to perform regular backups of your data. Obviously we backup your data as well: all the accounts get backed up every hour and, the latest backup gets copied to a different geographical location (just in case our server farm blows up) every day. We are spending quite a high percentage of our budget on the backup systems because we believe your data is the most important part of Plancake.

Going back to the main topic, you can export and import data from your 'Settings' page.

Your data gets dumped in a standard and open XML format so that you can open the file and read it. We chose to do so because we wanted to reinforce the fact that, in Plancake, you are the owner of your data.

As creating a backup is quite expensive in terms of computing power, non-Supporter accounts can not create more than one backup per day.

For us, it is now time to roll up our sleeves and finilize the Google Calendar integration.

Thanks for Plancaking,
Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/08/you-can-now-export-backup-your-data-and-import-them-back Fri, 08 Apr 2011 11:02:59 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/08/you-can-now-export-backup-your-data-and-import-them-back
Spot the important things in your life and stick to them We are always so busy. We hardly have spare time, and when we do, we often spend it solely on pursuing fun and entertainment. That's because we are all so stressed, and thinking about important things in life and finding answers to deep questions, would put an even greater burden on us.

We have to stop that vicious circle. We should always keep in mind what is truly important in our lives and think about that regularly. Personally, I have some lists on Plancake regarding my life goals. I created them by asking myself what I really wanted to do with my life and I regularly spend time reviewing them and checking how I am doing.

No wonder why most of the people who face death change their behaviour radically. Facing death is a strong reminder we don't have unlimited time to live.

However, you don't need to wait until you face death to realize that. As Stephen Covey writes in his The 7 habits of highly effective people, you should imagine you are on your deathbed and think what your would have liked to have accomplished in your life. That is exactly what you should pursue.

I also very much appreciate the speech Steve Jobs gave to the Stanford University graduates in 2005.

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice, heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
Steve Jobs

Have you any similar stories to the ones Steve Jobs was telling?

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/07/spot-the-important-things-in-your-life-and-stick-to-them Thu, 07 Apr 2011 19:12:03 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/07/spot-the-important-things-in-your-life-and-stick-to-them
Plancake, more than a piece of software + International news We all enjoy using Plancake as a good tool for getting things done.

But we thought Plancake could be even more than that. It could be like a place where people *learn* how to be more organised, productive, and eventually happier.

That is why we have revamped our blog. From now on, we are going to use it not only for broadcsting updates to the software but also to share interesting original articles and insights on the Plancake project.
You will now be able to comment them directly on the blog. Moreover, in the account top navigation, we have added a little counter next to the blog link to tell you whether there is any new post on the blog.

And there is even more to it! You can have *your* articles published on the Plancake blog and win a one-year subscription to the Supporter account for you or a friend of yours.
We are so excited about it! We are so looking forward to receiving some user's articles.
You can find more details here:
http://www.plancake.com/account.php/user/submitArticle (you need to be logged in)

On a side note, we have archived the two forums 'News and announcement' and 'Share your tricks' as now we are going to use the blog for those purposes (you can still read them at the bottom of the 'Forum' index page).

Two very exciting "international" pieces of news:
_ we have launched the Italian version of Plancake (thanks to Andrea)
_ we are looking for a Japanese translator (who will get a free Supporter account and a mention on our Team page) - don't hesitate to contact us if you are interested

From tomorrow, we are working on the Export/Backup functionality that shouldn't take more than a week to complete. After that, we want to finalize the Google Calendar Integration.

Thanks for Plancaking and don't forget to comment! Dan

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http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/02/plancake-more-than-a-piece-of-software--international-news Sat, 02 Apr 2011 16:19:00 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/04/02/plancake-more-than-a-piece-of-software--international-news
Improvements to the Android app
  • tags are now sorted according to the online settings
  • tasks show also due times now
  • launched a new screen for Starred tasks (main menu -> more -> starred)
  • made the marking as done of tasks more robust: we had the problem the due date for repetitive tasks was pushed back twice if the user marked a task as done on both the Android and online applications
  • a change in the orientation of the phone doesn't break synchronisation anymore
  • the user can't go back to the login screen after logging in successfully
  • launched the Italian version
  • the English text has been proofread
  • some minor bug fixes
  • some cosmetic UI improvements
  • Unfortunately this update is going to break the old application. We needed to break it in order to be able to make the API more robust. The API is the component the Android app is based on, and that can be use by any developer to create new applications.
    I am sorry for that, I understand it is annoying but it shouldn't happen again.

    That means you will not be able to sync the Android and the online apps. So, please follow these steps:

    • copy all the tasks on the Inbox from your mobile to your online Plancake account manually
    • check whether there is something to mark as done
    • uninstall the Plancake Android application
    • install it again through the Android Market

    A big thank you to Andrea who has localized the Android app, the online app and the website to Italian.

    Another big thank you to Jack for proofreading the Android app, the online app and the website.

    To learn more about Andrea and Jack (two great guys!), visit the team page:
    http://www.plancake.com/team

    A catch up on the Google Calendar Integration.
    After what has happened recently to our "colleagues" at Nozbe (yes, we are two different companies but we love to do similar things :-)), we think it would be safer for your data if we provide you with an Export/Backup feature before launching the GCal integration.
    http://www.nozbe.com/gtd/blog/post-f7ef1000/what_happened_with_gcal-synced_accounts_today_we_are_truly_sorry_for_the_problems_why_the_cloud_can_be_trusted

    Thanks for using Plancake!
    Dan

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/03/20/improvements-to-the-android-app Sun, 20 Mar 2011 14:39:00 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/03/20/improvements-to-the-android-app
    Important updates & Support for Japan Unfortunately in a few days, we have to perform an update to the Android application that is going to break it. That means, you have to uninstall it and installed it again. Sorry for that, I understand it is annoying but that should be the end of the beta stage for the application.
    We will make an announcement when that happens but you will probably realize it by yourself as you will get an error message when trying to synchronise. When that happens, please do as follows:
    • copy all the tasks in the Inbox from your mobile to your online Plancake account manually
    • check whether there is anything to mark as done
    • uninstall the application
    • install it again through the Android Market

    An update about the Google Calendar Integration. We are still testing it and hope it will be available soon for our Supporter.

    Minor changes to the application: we have added some more hints for lists and filters. That will be very useful for newcomers.

    I am glad to announce we finally have a logo. Thanks so much to Tristan and Jacqueline for their amazing job. You can find more about them on the 'Meet the team' page (link at the bottom of this page).

    Our thoughts, sympathy, and support go out to those in Japan affected by Friday’s powerful earthquake and resulting tsunami.
    We are close to all those people who are going through a tragedy in their lives.
    To do our small part to help, we are going to donate to local relief efforts 5% of the entire revenue of Plancake.com for this month trough the Britist Red Cross (http://www.redcross.org.uk/japantsunami).

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    the Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/03/13/important-updates--support-for-japan Sun, 13 Mar 2011 22:50:36 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/03/13/important-updates--support-for-japan
    Get a free subscription by proofreading Plancake We would need the website to be proofread, fixing typos (I think there are not many) but mostly amending the sentences that may sound a bit weird or not completely clear (everything has been put together by Yuki and myself: none of us is an English native-speaker).

    The requirements for the person are:
    _ native-speaker proficiency in English
    _ good understanding of the Plancake services
    _ very basic knowledge of HTML

    We are going to offer a free 1-year Plancake Subscription.
    There won't be any monetary compensation.

    Here is the list of services you would get:
    https://www.plancake.com/account.php/support
    plus the Google Calendar Integration that we are going to complete soon.

    To get the job done, we will provide you with an admin interface with an editor to be able to make amends fairly easily.
    The editor is not WYSIWYG, that's why a very basic knowledge of HTML is required.

    The task has to be done by the 13th of March.

    Here is the list of the current pages to review:

    _Public Home page:
    http://www.plancake.com
    
    _Services section: 
    http://www.plancake.com/services
    http://www.plancake.com/about/emailToInbox
    http://www.plancake.com/about/androidApp
    Google Calendar Integration documentation (to come soon)
    
    _The sideblock on the public area:
    "Plancake, the good parts"
    
    _Team page:
    http://www.plancake.com/team
    
    _Press page:
    http://www.plancake.com/press
    
    _Contact page:
    http://www.plancake.com/contact
    
    _Guide:
    http://www.plancake.com/help
    
    _Account, subscription page:
    https://www.plancake.com/account.php/support
    
    _all the labels, texts and messages on the account
    

    And we will ask you to proofread new paragraphs/pages we may add in the next 1 year; probably it won't be many.

    Please, contact us if you are interested.

    Ah, we would like to include you to the 'Meet the bakers' page:
    http://www.plancake.com//team
    (we are going to create a new section for collaborators)

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    Dan :-)

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/27/get-a-free-subscription-by-proofreading-plancake Sun, 27 Feb 2011 10:26:54 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/27/get-a-free-subscription-by-proofreading-plancake
    IMPORTANT message about completed tasks' retention time As we were talking about almost one week ago (http://www.plancake.com/blog/some-updates), the completed tasks are bloating the database, making the whole application slower. There are far more completed tasks than tasks to complete. And I guess the latter ones are the most relevant for everybody of us.

    Thus, we are going to keep only 3 months of history for completed tasks for normal accounts; that limit will not apply to Supporters.

    The operation of removing old completed tasks will be carried out on a daily basis and it is going to start on Monday, the 28th February at 4am GMT time.

    Actually, nothing will be deleted but moved to an archive we are going to keep just in case.

    Any concern/problem, please, just let us know.

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    Dan

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/24/important-message-about-completed-tasks-retention-time Thu, 24 Feb 2011 14:35:18 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/24/important-message-about-completed-tasks-retention-time
    Towards the Google Calendar Integration In this release, we have extended and improved the recurring tasks.

    Now, using the due date and the repetition dropdown, you are able to set a task to (just to give you a couple of examples):

    • every 3rd Sunday in June
    • every 3 months, on the last day

    That was another building block towards the Google Calendar integration. We needed to do that to provide a smooth interface. Anyway, also users who are not going to use Google Calendar can benefit from that improvement.

    I would say our repetition system is now one of the more advanced in the market.

    Speaking of the Google Calendar integration, I am sorry but we are still working [very hard!] on it. It is much harder than we expected. Please give us some more days.

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    Dan

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/24/towards-the-google-calendar-integration Thu, 24 Feb 2011 11:36:08 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/24/towards-the-google-calendar-integration
    Some updates There are some ideas I would like to share with you all.

    1) I have recently come up with this logo.
    That is just a draft. Nice thing its eyes are two ticks.
    I quite like it: simple, cute and align with our motto 'get organised & stay relaxed'.

    2) We were thinking to change the caption of the top filter: from 'Today/Tomorrow' to 'Overdue/Today'. After all, the counter counts the tasks that are overdue and due today. Nothing would change about the feature.

    3) We have realized that the completed tasks are bloating the database. There are far more completed tasks than tasks to be completed. And I guess the latter ones are the most relevant to you users. Thus, we are considering to keep only 3 months of history for completed tasks for normal accounts; that limit will not apply to Supporters.

    4) The implementation of the integration with Google Calendar is going quite well. I think it will be ready for mid next week.
    This new service will be available only to Supporters.

    Any feedback on any of those points is more than welcome.

    Thanks for plancaking!

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/19/some-updates Sat, 19 Feb 2011 11:04:10 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/19/some-updates
    Launched data encryption We have improved the security of your data even more.

    Now the login and registration pages are encrypted for everyone.

    Besides, if you are Supporter, all your account data (lists, tasks, notes) on the web application is protected by using encryption.

    Recently we have launched a free 2-week trial of the Supporter account. Then, this can be a good occasion to give it a try.

    Thanks for using Plancake.

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/16/launched-data-encryption Wed, 16 Feb 2011 14:50:25 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/16/launched-data-encryption
    New views available to be more productive We have added 2 more views, besides the old 'All scheduled' (ex-'Calendar'):
    • All Starred
    • Today/Tomorrow

    We thought it was good to provide a counter for the latter one (similar to the Inbox one).
    Thus, by the end of the day, you have to be sure both counter are hidden (meaning there are no tasks left).

    Other minor changes:

    • the 'start reordering' action has been removed
    • the 'completed tasks' views shows also the name of the list the task belongs to
    • fixed some issues with keyboard shortcuts, first introduced by the previous release

    Thanks for using Plancake.

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/11/new-views-available-to-be-more-productive Fri, 11 Feb 2011 10:26:26 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/11/new-views-available-to-be-more-productive
    Other usability improvements
  • users are now able to see scheduled tasks also on the Todo list on demand
  • we have renamed 'Calendar' to 'All scheduled' (we reckon that makes more sense)
  • the 'New Task' button in the right sidebar is always visible, no matter how much you scroll down the page
  • we have moved the Facebook block away from your account
  • improved the usability of the API documentation by making the navigation fixed and always accessible
  • now you can edit a task also by clicking on its due date or due time
  • scheduled tasks are greyed out while reordering tasks
  • the filter by tags is always expanded
  • moved the 'Add task' button to a more relevant position
  • added 'Add Task' button also at the bottom of the form shown after clicking on the 'options' link
  • the 'repeat weekly several days a week, [select later]' repetition option has moved a bit down
  • Another important news is the change of the slogan to 'get organised & stay relaxed'. What do you reckon of it? Any feedback is more than welcome.
    'planning is a piece of cake' was cool but didn't describe the product very much.

    We have started offering support also in Italian. For the purpose, we have created a specific forum and the 'Contact us' tickets can be written in Italian. Benvenuti!

    Thanks for using Plancake.

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/09/other-usability-improvements Wed, 09 Feb 2011 12:09:11 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/02/09/other-usability-improvements
    Launched shortcuts for due time The main news about this new release is the launch of due time shortcuts.
    You are now able to type in task descriptions like these ones:
    • pay Morgan %%next monday %%money @23
    • meet Jason at the pub after work %%tom @11.15pm

    Obviously you can use due time shortcuts only when you set a due date as well.

    We have only launched a new button to refresh the current page at the top of the task list(next to the 'printer-friendly version' button).

    We have also improved the detection of links for the task description and task note.
    Now you don't need to use the 'http://' prefix to have a link linkified.
    In other words, both 'http://www.google.com' and 'www.google.com' get linkified.

    Besides, we have fixed a couple of bugs:

    • it wasn't possible to set midnight as due time
    • the navigation of the introductory tutorial wasn't working properly

    Thanks for using Plancake.

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/30/launched-shortcuts-for-due-time Sun, 30 Jan 2011 14:06:58 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/30/launched-shortcuts-for-due-time
    New feature for due date: you can pick many weekdays for a task We are glad to announce you can pick more than one weekday for the repetition of a task (i.e. Monday and Thursday), as you can do with Google Calendar.

    You need to upgrade your Android application if you want tasks with this new repetition option to display correctly.

    Thanks for using Plancake.

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/26/new-feature-for-due-date-you-can-pick-many-weekdays-for-a-task Wed, 26 Jan 2011 18:59:27 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/26/new-feature-for-due-date-you-can-pick-many-weekdays-for-a-task
    New features: starred tasks, due times and more This has been an update with quite exciting new features:
    • you can set a due time (not only due date) for a task
    • you can star a task (a-la-Gmail)
    • in your Settings area, you can change the time format (12H or 24H)
    • in your Settings area, you can choose the first day of the week for the Calendar popup (Sunday or Monday)
    • we have moved the 'Calendar' link to the top of the left sidebar for user interface clarity

    The API has been updated to reflect the new features.

    We are going to update the Android application to reflect the new features soon.

    We have also fixed a bug: the 'g' shortcut wasn't working for the Calendar.

    We are planning another update soon to improve the new features.

    We remind you the domain for the Plancake email address has been changed from plancake.com to plancakebox.com

    Thanks for using Plancake.

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/22/new-features-starred-tasks-due-times-and-more Sat, 22 Jan 2011 12:40:28 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/22/new-features-starred-tasks-due-times-and-more
    Android app - Fixed a bug with the sort order of lists You may have noticed the order of the lists on your Android app is not as on your Web interface sometimes.

    In this release we have fixed that bug (and another minor one).

    We have also added a functionality to let you reset your local data if needed (Menu -> More -> Reset local data).

    We suggest you get the new version of the app. For this update only, you need to uninstall your application before the update.

    Here are the three easy steps to follow:

    1. make sure you have sync'ed your local data with the central Plancake server
    2. uninstall the application
    3. install the Android application the usual way

    We apologize for any inconvenience caused by those bugs.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/20/android-app--fixed-a-bug-with-the-sort-order-of-lists Thu, 20 Jan 2011 10:16:03 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/20/android-app--fixed-a-bug-with-the-sort-order-of-lists
    IMPORTANT: Change to your Plancake email address Unfortunately we need to change the domain for your Plancake email address.

    It will become plancakebox.com

    That means if your current Plancake email address is:
    inbox_niki.jones_15c522@plancake.com
    that will change to
    inbox_niki.jones_15c522@plancakebox.com

    Sorry for the inconvenience caused by that operation but we will try and manage the change in the best possible way for our users.

    The change is going to happen on the:
    22nd of January 2011, at 11am GMT

    For those who are not familiar with GMT (Greenwich Mean Time), that is the time currently observed in the UK.

    This is the time of the change in different cities worldwide:
    Los Angeles: 22nd of January 2011, at 3am GMT
    New York: 22nd of January 2011, at 6am GMT
    Tokyo: 22nd of January 2011, at 8pm GMT
    Sydney: 22nd of January 2011, at 10pm GMT

    Please, remember to update the address in your email clients.

    Should you have any problem, please don't hesitate to contact us.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/18/important-change-to-your-plancake-email-address Tue, 18 Jan 2011 19:13:59 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/18/important-change-to-your-plancake-email-address
    Fixed a bug in the Android application The Android application was affected by a bug: under certain circumstances the application wasn't able to identify the Inbox correctly.

    You are affected if you can see one of the lists you created between the 'Inbox' and the 'Todo' lists.
    If you are affected, we strongly recommend you update the application.

    We have spotted another minor bug on the Android app about the order of the lists. We are going to fix that other issue soon and provide an update.

    We apologies for any inconvenience caused.

    Regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/13/fixed-a-bug-in-the-android-application Thu, 13 Jan 2011 14:15:24 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/13/fixed-a-bug-in-the-android-application
    More usability improvements and additions to documentation We have spent some more time improving Plancake from a usability perspective.

    Here are the most important achievements:

    • It is now possible to log in and register to Plancake using your Google Account
    • We have moved the buttons for actions on tasks (print, reorder, ...) from the right sidebar to the top of the central pane
    • Fixed a bug: after scrolling down and editing a task, the browser was scrolling up the page (quite annoying!).

    We have also added some information to the documentations of both:

    It is about what our user Jared has found out regarding adding tasks via voice recognition on Android.
    Thanks to him for sharing that.

    From now on we are going to focus on the Google Calendar integration.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/11/more-usability-improvements-and-additions-to-documentation Tue, 11 Jan 2011 22:26:44 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/11/more-usability-improvements-and-additions-to-documentation
    Usability improvements to the Web Interface of Plancake Tasks Over the last couple of weeks, we have focused on how we could make Plancake more intuitive and easier-to-use by new users and existing ones.

    Based on that, we have released some usability improvements to the Web Interface of Plancake Tasks.

    • Tags are now sortable (Settings > Manage Tags)
    • The 'view completed tasks' link has been removed. You can now use the 'tick' button at the top of the sidebar
    • When a task is marked as done, a simple animation has been added to show you can undo that by clicking the 'tick' button
    • The 'note' icon has been moved straight after the description of the task to make sure users don't overlook it
    • Added a 'reorder' button for lists (to start reordering quickly)
    • Added a 'reorder' button for tasks (to start reordering quickly)
    • The 'New Task' button has been moved to the right sidebar and it is always at hand
    • We have redone the introductory tutorial (just click on the 'play' button at the top of the right sidebar)
    • The 'new Task' dialog has got a 'more options' link
    • The action links on the completed tasks are now at the top of the main pane
    • Added a cross button at the top right corner of pop ups to close them quickly
    • Moved the information about time and email address: it is now underneath the top navigation
    • Tasks with and without due dates are clearly separated within a list by displaying some headers

    Please let us know if you think something can be further improved usability-wise.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/09/usability-improvements-to-the-web-interface-of-plancake-tasks Sun, 09 Jan 2011 16:00:48 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/09/usability-improvements-to-the-web-interface-of-plancake-tasks
    Roadmap for the first months of 2011 We have just put together the official roadmap for the first months of 2011.

    Please find it here:
    http://www.plancake.com/roadmap

    We hope you think it makes sense.
    Any comment and feedback is, as usual, more than welcome.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/05/roadmap-for-the-first-months-of-2011 Wed, 05 Jan 2011 18:31:32 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2011/01/05/roadmap-for-the-first-months-of-2011
    A video message from Daniele




    Regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/24/a-video-message-from-daniele Fri, 24 Dec 2010 14:18:28 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/24/a-video-message-from-daniele
    Plancake Notes is out We have just launched a new product in beta: Plancake Notes!
    Once you log in to your account, you will find a new item on the top menu: 'notes'.
    That will let you take long notes in a Word-like way.
    We suggest you try the 'maximize' button from the toolbar, it is very handy (that is why we have replicated it many times :-) ).
    At some point quite soon we want to add tags also for Notes.

    Non-supporters will not be able to create more than 3 notes.

    The Mobile Version of the application has been deferred to next year as we were and we are busy on higher-priority projects.

    The promotional code for upgrading to Supporter account is still valid: 9WE3k4end5 for 20% discount ($24 rather than $30):
    http://www.plancake.com/account.php/support

    Moreover, let us know if you want to give a Supporter account as a present to a friend, colleague, employee,... We will give you a code that will let them upgrade at no cost.

    You can help us. We would like to improve our "Testimonials" block. That will be displayed on the website, including the homepage probably. Each testimonial will include a quote, the avatar and the username of the user.
    Please, send us your testimonial if you don't mind your avatar to be displayed on the website.
    And if you still don't have an avatar, please upload it from here:
    http://www.plancake.com/account.php/settings/avatar

    What we are working till the end of the year is a restyling of the website and improvement of our presence on the Google Chrome Market.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/16/plancake-notes-is-out Thu, 16 Dec 2010 13:07:33 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/16/plancake-notes-is-out
    Launched Subscription system - become Supporter! We have finally launched the subscription system.
    You can find it at this address:
    http://www.plancake.com/account.php/subscribe
    (or you can see the links on your account)

    Supporters will get additional features and benefits.
    Thanks in advance to all our users who are going to support the product - we have a dream job thanks to all of you.

    We have created the promotion code 9WE3k4end5 for the launch that is going to give you a 20% discount.
    The code is valid till midnight of the 18th of December (GMT time).

    Please, users who have donated at least 24USD contact us to claim a complimentary Supporter account.

    An important point for Supporters: you need to upgrade the Android application in order to get the maximum number of syncs per day lifted.

    Great news: we are starting hiring!
    You can read the open positions here:
    http://www.plancake.com/jobs
    All the jobs are based in London, UK.

    Unfortunately the Google Calendar Integration has been deferred.
    We are sorry about that but we will try to prioritize it next year (top priority will be the notepad for Supporters that will be delivered in January).
    That was partly due to the development of the subscription system (and related products we are going to launch soon) that we thought we would have done next year but we need funds now as we need to pay salaries soon.

    Happy Plancaking!

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/10/launched-subscription-system--become-supporter Fri, 10 Dec 2010 22:54:39 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/10/launched-subscription-system--become-supporter
    Plancake is going to become a business soon We have already briefly mention this.

    We are going to set up a business (we aim to the start of Febrary 2011). It will probably be a Limited Company based in the UK.

    We also are going to start hiring people. We are going to need a Software Developer and a Business Developer&Community Manager.

    Another piece of news is that we are going to create a 'Supporter account' that is going to get extra features by paying a small yearly subscription.

    Finally, we decided to stop making our source code open. We are a bit sad about that but there are too many people who don't want to read the license properly.

    Wrapping it up, we are very willing to grow. We love Plancake also because you love it!

    Thanks for using Plancake.

    Regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/06/plancake-is-going-to-become-a-business-soon Mon, 06 Dec 2010 00:07:26 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/06/plancake-is-going-to-become-a-business-soon
    Android application available on the Android market (v 0.9) Finally we made it!

    Plancake for Android is available on the Android Market (just search for Plancake).

    It is still a beta version, thus there may be still some bug. Moreover, we didn't have the chance to test it on many real devices, even if we are pretty confident there shouldn't be any major problem.

    Please help us and leave some feedback on the forum (the link is at the bottom of the post). We mean also positive feedback, something like "it works on my Nexus One".

    Working on the Android application gave us the chance to polish our API, too. If you are a developer, don't forget you can play around with it (the API) and do something cool.

    The only known issue so far is that the initial importing of the lists and tasks may fail if you have lots of tasks. In that case, you will get a clear error message. We will try to fix that bug as soon as possible.

    The documentation on how to use the application is on the Services page (we are going to move it to a more appropriate place soon).

    The maximum number of synchronisations between the handset and the Plancake server is two per day. We are going to introduce a 'supporter account' that should allow syncing more often for a small annual charge that would help the project very much.

    We want the debut of the Android application to be the first of a number of portings to a variety of platforms, such as iPhone, Symbian, Blackberry, ...

    Happy Plancaking, even on Android :-)

    Regards,
    the Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/04/android-application-available-on-the-android-market-v-09 Sat, 04 Dec 2010 03:15:12 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/12/04/android-application-available-on-the-android-market-v-09
    Further API improvements (v. 1.9.11) This release only improves the Plancake API.

    This is the list of improvements:

    • when requesting a token, you can send additional information
    • the token carries the information of whether the account is a 'supporter account'
    • added the support for task due_time
    • before issueing an API key, the system makes sure that is unique
    • before issueing an API token, the system makes sure that is unique
    • the task_id in the Java API kit is now of type long (rather than int)
    • the 'only_due_today_and_tomorrow' filter return also the overdue tasks

    Happy plancaking!

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/24/further-api-improvements-v-1911 Wed, 24 Nov 2010 11:45:52 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/24/further-api-improvements-v-1911
    Fixed some API kits issues + better Roadmap (v. 1.9.10) This release doesn't change anything in the way you use Plancake.

    We have just fixed some issues with the API kits.

    Moreover, we have refined what is going to happen in 2011 on the Roapmap page.
    The most important changes are:

    • we should start building a notes-taking system (kind of a notepad)
    • we are going to find developers who can build the iPhone, Symbian, Blackberry applications for Plancake using our API and the Android application as a reference.
    • sooner rather than later we are going to form a company: it should be a Limited company based in the UK

    The development of the Android application is going well. We hope we can release the first beta version within days.

    Thanks for using Plancake.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/22/fixed-some-api-kits-issues--better-roadmap-v-1910 Mon, 22 Nov 2010 11:51:53 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/22/fixed-some-api-kits-issues--better-roadmap-v-1910
    Improvements to the API (v. 1.9.9) This announcement is mainly for developers.

    We have done some general improvements and fixes to the Plancake API.

    We have also packed the Java API kit. Please use it as a reference if you would like to port the API kit to other languages. If you do that, please let us know.

    Thanks for using Plancake.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/18/improvements-to-the-api-v-199 Thu, 18 Nov 2010 09:38:55 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/18/improvements-to-the-api-v-199
    Improvement: Recurrent tasks are inserted in the history when marked as done (v. 1.9.8) We have implemented an improvement we were talking about in this post: http://www.plancake.com/forums/topic/63/tasks-history/ (thanks to joellorcaabrigo for his feedback)

    Now when you mark a recurrent task as done, an entry will be inserted in the history that lets you keep a record of when you completed an instance of that task.

    Let me take this opportunity to remind you two things:

    Thanks for using Plancake.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/13/improvement-recurrent-tasks-are-inserted-in-the-history-when-marked-as-done-v-198 Sat, 13 Nov 2010 12:20:31 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/13/improvement-recurrent-tasks-are-inserted-in-the-history-when-marked-as-done-v-198
    Fixed some issues with tags First of all, thanks to greypilgrim who reported the issue.

    Users weren't able to use tags containing uppercase letters.

    Now the issue should be fixed and, as a further improvement, tags are now case-insensitive meaning you can't create a new tag that differs only for the case of the letters from an existing one (that avoids confusion). That also means that, while using the %% syntax for adding tags, you don't need to care about lower/uppercase letters.

    For developers: the fixes have been added in versions 1.9.6 and 1.9.7

    Regards,
    Plancake bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/11/fixed-some-issues-with-tags Thu, 11 Nov 2010 12:22:58 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/11/fixed-some-issues-with-tags
    The Plancake API is ready We are glad to announce the Plancake API is now available.

    Thanks to that, any developer will be able to design and build their own application to interact with their Plancake data (lists and tasks).

    We hope developers will create some cool and clever applications that, later on, can be used by all our users.

    You can find the link to the API documentation from the Services page.

    Building the API was a foundamental step for letting us develop the Android application.

    We are now working mainly on the Android application. That will be also a great way to check the design of the API is sufficient for building a new application on top of it.

    Mind the state of the API is still experimental, meaning the specifications may still change.

    Any feedback by developers would be very appreciated.

    Thanks for using Plancake.

    Kind regards, Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/09/the-plancake-api-is-ready Tue, 09 Nov 2010 13:14:04 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/11/09/the-plancake-api-is-ready
    New roadmap + Meet the bakers + blog + avatars Before starting with some core development (API + Android app + Google Calendar Integration), we wanted to share with everybody who we are, where we come from and where we are going to.

    Thus, we thought these links will be of some interest for you:

    Moreover, we have added some cool features we hope will increase our sense of community:

    • a new blog for announcements and news
    • the ability to upload your avatar that will be used on the forum
    • some social widgets that will help you share content and spread the word (please! :-)).

    By the way, don't forget to become a fan of the Plancake Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/pages/Plancake/100535076665570

    Hope you like what we have done...and great stuff coming soon!

    P.S.: for developers: this is the version 1.9.1

    Kind regards, Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/10/26/new-roadmap--meet-the-backers--blog--avatars Tue, 26 Oct 2010 10:08:50 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/10/26/new-roadmap--meet-the-backers--blog--avatars
    New version out (1.8.1) - some big little changes + bug fixes
    Here are the changes:
    _ the motto is now included in the logo
    _ increased the number of advertisements displayed
    _ moved the donate button at the buttom of the sidebar
    _ disabled the autocomplete for task description textfields
    _ fixed a bug: it wasn't possible to cancel the sorting mode before starting sorting
    _ fixed a bug: long task descriptions were cut without a clear feedback on the user interface
    _ fixed a bug: advertisements were interfering with the introductory video
    _ made the code more robust to avoid the same bug as above for lists and contexts


    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/10/03/new-version-out-181--some-big-little-changes--bug-fixes Sun, 03 Oct 2010 16:11:10 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/10/03/new-version-out-181--some-big-little-changes--bug-fixes
    IMPORTANT - Plancake will be down for scheduled maintenance of server
    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/09/25/important--plancake-will-be-down-for-scheduled-maintenance-of-server Sat, 25 Sep 2010 20:48:55 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/09/25/important--plancake-will-be-down-for-scheduled-maintenance-of-server
    Let's increase Plancake backup space We are already storing hourly backups of all our users' data on Google servers.

    We want to add an extra level of security and increase the automation of the process.

    That is why we have created a Dropbox account to use it as a second platform for the backup.

    We really believe Dropbox is an awesome service and it is very reliable.
    Moreover it is totally free.

    Obviously the more space we have the better. And you can help increase it by just signing up using this referral link:
    http://www.dropbox.com/referrals/NTEwMTc3NzYzOQ

    Using that link you will get an extra 250MB for your personal use and Plancake can increase its backup space of 250MB, too.

    Thanks for your help,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/09/19/lets-increase-plancake-backup-space Sun, 19 Sep 2010 23:17:32 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/09/19/lets-increase-plancake-backup-space
    New release (1.8.0) - fixed a bug introduced by the previous release working for the completed tasks (thanks to joellorcaabrigo for bug reporting).

    Sorry for any inconvenience caused.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/09/02/new-release-180--fixed-a-bug-introduced-by-the-previous-release Thu, 02 Sep 2010 01:36:23 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/09/02/new-release-180--fixed-a-bug-introduced-by-the-previous-release
    New release (1.7.9) - quick video tutorial and tidier account sidebar
    Now Plancake will be even more friendly to new users as:
    _ we have created a quick video tutorial that will play when the user logs in for the first time
    _ a bunch of tasks will be added to the Inbox of new users to explain them the basis of Plancake

    Good news is you can play the quick video tutorial anytime. Just click the new 'play' button on the account sidebar. We recommend you do so: there could be some feature you are missing at the moment.

    Talking about new buttons, we have created 4 of them on the account sidebar. You can easily check what they are for by yourself.
    We did that to make the sidebar a bit tidier and prettier and to make same room for upcoming adverts.

    We are going to use advertisement and affiliations (together with donations) as source of income in order to keep Plancake free for everyone.

    Thanks for reading and for using Plancake.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/30/new-release-179--quick-video-tutorial-and-tidier-account-sidebar Mon, 30 Aug 2010 23:02:14 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/30/new-release-179--quick-video-tutorial-and-tidier-account-sidebar
    New release (1.7.8) - fixed a bug
    The bug is well described here:
    http://www.plancake.com/forums/topic/141/removing-tag-keeps-task-in-former-contextfiltered-list/

    Thanks a lot to drumusician for the bug reporting.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/18/new-release-178--fixed-a-bug Wed, 18 Aug 2010 22:47:30 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/18/new-release-178--fixed-a-bug
    New release (1.7.7) - fixed the bug with typing foreign characters
    Thanks very much to sharonv and joellorcaabrigo for the bug reporting.

    To prevent mistakes like that one (a bug introduced in old working code) from happening again we would like to put two systems in place:
    _ create some automated tests that will run before uploading a new release - this is something some of our users can do if they are experienced web developers (please get in touch if you are willing to do it)
    _ create a "preview" version that our users can use to help test new features before they go live.

    Thanks for using Plancake.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/16/new-release-177--fixed-the-bug-with-typing-foreign-characters Mon, 16 Aug 2010 22:01:17 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/16/new-release-177--fixed-the-bug-with-typing-foreign-characters
    New release (1.7.6) - only some bug fixes
    There are no new features.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/11/new-release-176--only-some-bug-fixes Wed, 11 Aug 2010 22:50:25 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/11/new-release-176--only-some-bug-fixes
    New release (1.7.5) - only some bug fixes
    In this release we have fixed some bugs.

    There are no new features.

    Kind regards,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/10/new-release-175--only-some-bug-fixes Tue, 10 Aug 2010 22:17:09 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/10/new-release-175--only-some-bug-fixes
    New release - task description shortcuts easier and more powerful
    The most important change for this release is about the task description shortcuts: they are now easier-to-use and let you do more. They are the ones you can append to the task description to quickly add some information to the task.

    Please read this chapter of the guide to see how they can help during your day-to-day use of Plancake:
    http://www.plancake.com/help#task_description_shortcuts

    We have also placed an help link next to the text box where you type the task description in the case you don't remember the shortcuts you can use.

    -----------------------------------

    Another important change is that now contexts are called tags. That has been done in order to be friendly to users who are not familiar with GTD. Nothing changes for the users implementing GTD with Plancake. After all contexts are a particular type of tags.

    -----------------------------------

    Moreover, we have fixed two issues:
    _ incorrect syntax in the task entry box was causing the task details to be cleared (thanks to nskyers for the bug reporting)
    _ most of the help links across the web interface weren't reacting to clicks

    -----------------------------------

    And finally, this will be interesting for the developers who have installed Plancake on their servers, we have updated the sfErrorNotifierPlugin to the latest version:
    http://www.symfony-project.org/plugins/sfErrorNotifierPlugin

    -----------------------------------

    I also want to highlight an interesting thread created by gamma about ideas to improve the Plancake user interface:
    http://www.plancake.com/forums/topic/123/confusing-user-interface/

    Please feel free to write your opinion.

    -----------------------------------

    Finally, I want to talk about an important upcoming new feature.

    We have been talking about it on this thread:
    http://www.plancake.com/forums/topic/99/calendar-views/

    Basically it is the two-way integration of Plancake with Google Calendar.
    Unfortunately we are very busy at the moment with other Plancake-related development but we think that that is a feature ideal for a software developer of our community to work on.

    So, if you are a very experienced web developer and would like this feature, please get in touch.

    -----------------------------------

    Thanks for reading and for using Plancake.


    Kind regards,
    Daniele

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/08/new-release--task-description-shortcuts-easier-and-more-powerful Sun, 08 Aug 2010 18:48:24 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/08/08/new-release--task-description-shortcuts-easier-and-more-powerful
    Forum - new features
    I just wanted to say we have recently added two new features to our forum:
    _ now you can attach files when you *post a reply*
    _ now you can subscribe to a thread by clicking the link 'Subscribe' at the top of the first post in the thread (next to the 'RSS topic feed' link) - by doing that, you will receive an email notification every time someone posts in that thread: pretty handy!

    Soon (probably in September) we will add the possibility to upload an avatar...that will be fun :-)

    Cheers,
    Dan

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/27/forum--new-features Tue, 27 Jul 2010 22:21:05 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/27/forum--new-features
    New version out (1.7.1) - some bug fixes
    A new version of Plancake has been uploaded.

    There are not new features but some fixes to bugs:
    _ editing a task was resetting any pre-existing context
    _ the task repetition functionality wasn't working properly with some date formats (thanks to Peter)
    _ some keyboard shortcuts which make use of the CTRL key were clashing with some regular keyboard operations (thanks to nskyers)

    There is just one minor usability improvement: on the Calendar, tasks due on the same date are ordered by list.

    Kind regars,
    Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/25/new-version-out-171--some-bug-fixes Sun, 25 Jul 2010 23:07:54 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/25/new-version-out-171--some-bug-fixes
    Roadmap for the new few months [/quote]

    Hi Frank.
    Thanks for switching :-)

    In August we are going to make the shortcuts even more powerful and easy to use: you will enjoy that :-)

    [quote=Frank Koornstra]Can I suggest one new feature for the roadmap October+? It would be great to make the tasks that have a due date, available to my Google Calendar through the XML or iCal format.
    [/quote]
    That feature is already scheduled for October+ and it will be quite high priority as many users are requesting it.

    [quote=Frank Koornstra]Have fun on your vacation.[/quote]
    Thanks!

    Cheers,
    Dan

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/25/roadmap-for-the-new-few-months Sun, 25 Jul 2010 23:02:25 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/25/roadmap-for-the-new-few-months
    plancake has changed username
    I have decided to change my username from 'plancake' to 'dan_plan'.

    I think it makes more sense for the users because they can know who they are "talking" to, as I hope we will get some collaborators to take care of the forum soon.

    I remind everybody it is not possible for you to change your username yourself. If you need to, please contact us and we will do it if your new username is not already taken.

    Cheers,
    Dan

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/25/plancake-has-changed-username Sun, 25 Jul 2010 22:40:20 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/25/plancake-has-changed-username
    You may have experienced some problem today while using Plancake today at around 1.30PM (GMT time) our infrastructure provider (Rapidswitch.com) experienced some connectivity problems with one of their links.

    Plancake has been affected by that: you may have found Plancake unavailable or slow around that time.

    If so, sorry for any inconveniences caused.

    Rapidswitch is a highly estimated server provider and it rarely has these kind of issues.

    Anyway, everything went back to normal very quickly.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/21/you-may-have-experienced-some-problem-today-while-using-plancake Wed, 21 Jul 2010 20:59:05 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/21/you-may-have-experienced-some-problem-today-while-using-plancake
    New version out (1.7.0) - now you are able to filter by two contexts + you are welcome.

    That is defined as "connection between the product manager and its users" ;-)

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    Dan

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/19/new-version-out-170--now-you-are-able-to-filter-by-two-contexts- Mon, 19 Jul 2010 18:24:42 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/19/new-version-out-170--now-you-are-able-to-filter-by-two-contexts-
    Let's come up with a great logo Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/17/lets-come-up-with-a-great-logo Sat, 17 Jul 2010 18:14:24 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/17/lets-come-up-with-a-great-logo
    New version out (1.6.9) - the email-to-inbox is even more robust
    In this release we have focused on making the email-to-inbox component even more robust.

    We are all finding that component very useful, so it is worth to spend time on it.
    Above all, after the problem we experienced last weekend. Sorry for that.

    Now Plancake parses each new email in a separate process so that if a fatal error stops the parsing of an email, the others get parsed anyway.
    A bit like Google Chrome: it has been built so that if a tab crashes, the whole browser does not crash.

    For the next few days we will work on other under-the-hood improvements.
    Obviously we want to add a lot of functionalities to Plancake, but the priority for us is to make sure what is already there works great for all of you.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/15/new-version-out-169--the-emailtoinbox-is-even-more-robust Thu, 15 Jul 2010 22:37:23 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/15/new-version-out-169--the-emailtoinbox-is-even-more-robust
    New version out (1.6.8) - Fixed some issues with Internet Explorer 7
    We have just released a new version of Plancake that fixes some usability issues experienced by Internet Explorer 7 users.
    Many thanks to galileos who submitted those issues.

    The issues we have fixed are:
    _ users weren't able to see their completed tasks
    _ the interface was behaving strangely after creating a new list

    Again, that should concern only Internet Explorer 7 users.

    By the way, if you are still using Internet Explorer 7 we strongly recommend you start using Firefox or Chrome instead.

    Kind regards,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/14/new-version-out-168--fixed-some-issues-with-internet-explorer-7 Wed, 14 Jul 2010 20:11:37 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/07/14/new-version-out-168--fixed-some-issues-with-internet-explorer-7
    New version out (1.6.7) - better filtering by context
    We are very excited to introduce this improvement to you all.
    We decided to implement this feature because a lot of our users asked for it.

    Now you will be able to filter *all* your lists by context at once.

    Up until yesterday, you were only able to filter the current list by context.

    Actually, you will still be able to filter only the current list (we thought that was quite handy to keep that functionality).

    Both the filters are on the right hand side of your account.

    We have also fixed 4 minor bugs.

    Regards,
    the Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/06/27/new-version-out-167--better-filtering-by-context Sun, 27 Jun 2010 23:08:55 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/06/27/new-version-out-167--better-filtering-by-context
    New version out (1.6.5) - bug fixes for the downloadable package
    We have just released a new version that fixes some problems with the downloadable package.

    That means:
    _ no new features
    _ no bug fixes for the hosted version of Plancake

    Thus, you may be interested in this release only if you are a developer who tried to install Plancake on your server.

    Happy plancaking,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/06/13/new-version-out-165--bug-fixes-for-the-downloadable-package Sun, 13 Jun 2010 11:54:08 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/06/13/new-version-out-165--bug-fixes-for-the-downloadable-package
    New version out (1.6.3) - the email-to-inbox component rocks!
    We are very proud to announce a big improvement to the email-to-inbox component.
    Now you will be able to add a note to the task you send via this component.

    Please visit the help page to find out how this new feature works (look for the "Adding tasks via email" paragraph).


    Moreover we have fixed two bugs:

    _ while transforming the subject of the emails to your Plancake inbox into tasks, the description was cut at around the 150th character. That limitation has been removed.

    _ the 'reorder tasks' box used to be popping up while creating a new list (very rarely) but now that is sorted.

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/06/02/new-version-out-163--the-emailtoinbox-component-rocks Wed, 02 Jun 2010 22:36:56 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/06/02/new-version-out-163--the-emailtoinbox-component-rocks
    New version out (1.6.1) - Plancake learnt how to linkify & send tasks
    A new Plancake release has been launched (1.6.1).

    So, what's new? Well, there are three major changes.

    1) Plancake will automatically create a link you can click when you type an Internet address in the description or note of the task. Pretty handy!

    2) All the developers who have installed Plancake on their servers will be alerted when a newer release is available. That will allow them to catch up with bug fixes and new useful features.

    3) And then, the biggest piece of news for this release. From time to time, Plancake itself will send some notifications to your Inbox. They will be mainly to let you know about important new features and new bug fixes (like these ones). We wanted to create a stronger relationship between Plancake and all of you (thanks again for being one of us!) and increase the sense of community that is very important for the Plancake project. Hope you like Plancake's smiling face :-)
    And this is just the start. Soon you will be able to receive tasks not only from Plancake but from any user you allow to add tasks for you (i.e.: your wife, your brother,...).

    Thanks,
    The Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/27/new-version-out-161--plancake-learnt-how-to-linkify--send-tasks Thu, 27 May 2010 22:45:54 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/27/new-version-out-161--plancake-learnt-how-to-linkify--send-tasks
    First ideas around the Plancake API Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/16/first-ideas-around-the-plancake-api Sun, 16 May 2010 21:38:39 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/16/first-ideas-around-the-plancake-api
    Plancake 1.6.0 is out - very easy installation process
    With the great help of one of our users who was very eager to get Plancake running on his server, we have made the installation dramatically easier :-)

    Give it a try.

    Thanks,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/16/plancake-160-is-out--very-easy-installation-process Sun, 16 May 2010 21:32:00 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/16/plancake-160-is-out--very-easy-installation-process
    API and Android application coming soon welcome to the forum.

    What did you mean by your post? That using RTM API is a good example?

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/07/api-and-android-application-coming-soon Fri, 07 May 2010 20:10:32 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/07/api-and-android-application-coming-soon
    Plancake 1.5.2 is out we have just launched a new release of Plancake.

    The major updates are:
    _ Changed the key combinations for triggering the keyboard shortcuts. The use of
    the CTRL button wasn't a good idea because it is used by the browser and
    to type foreign characters.
    _ Fixed a problem with the remember-me feature
    _ Fixed the problem with the filter by context some users reported.
    _ Fixed a problem with the email-to-task component - the parsing of the email
    wasn't very robust

    We hope you will enjoy the new changes.

    Best regards,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/07/plancake-152-is-out Fri, 07 May 2010 19:58:41 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/05/07/plancake-152-is-out
    Fixed the problem in the email-to-inbox-task component outlined by som
    We have fixed the problem in the email-to-inbox-task component outlined by some of our users. http://tinyurl.com/ydxbvvw

    I remind everybody that now you can follow us on Twitter:
    http://twitter.com/plancakebakers

    Regards,
    the Plancake bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/04/05/fixed-the-problem-in-the-emailtoinboxtask-component-outlined-by-som Mon, 05 Apr 2010 22:02:07 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/04/05/fixed-the-problem-in-the-emailtoinboxtask-component-outlined-by-som
    We are now Open Source
    Few days ago we made the Plancake's code open source.

    That decision was made mainly for two reasons:
    _ let you customize it based on your needs
    _ engage other developers and make them improve Plancake more and more.

    So, if you are a web developer and excited by Plancake, please, give us a hand.

    You can find all the information on the 'Development' section.

    Enjoy Plancake code!

    The Plancake bakers.

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/03/09/we-are-now-open-source Tue, 09 Mar 2010 21:23:54 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2010/03/09/we-are-now-open-source
    Plancake is on RapidSwitch we are so proud to announce Plancake has been moved to a much better server with RapidSwitch.

    RapidSwitch are located in UK. Actually, they are the UK's leading suppliers of dedicated servers.

    They have been recommended to us by the management of The Beans Group Ltd., the leading company for the University Stundents market in UK, with millions and millions of page impressions on their websites.

    With such a great partern, we are sure to provide you stability, reliability and speed.

    What a great day today!

    Thanks,
    the Plancake bakers

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    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/11/30/plancake-is-on-rapidswitch Mon, 30 Nov 2009 23:32:56 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/11/30/plancake-is-on-rapidswitch
    Plancake 1.5.0 is out
    We are glad to announce the version 1.5.0 is out.

    These are the new features
    _ It will be possible to set recurrent tasks (ie. every week, every first day of the month, every first Thursday of the month)
    _ We will implement keyboard shortcuts
    _ It will be possible to add tasks via email (the email address will contain the username)
    _ 'Print list' functionality

    Checkout the help page to find our more on how to use these new important features.

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    the Plancake Bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/10/28/plancake-150-is-out Wed, 28 Oct 2009 23:52:08 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/10/28/plancake-150-is-out
    Plancake 1.3.0 is out
    We are glad to announce the version 1.3.0 is out.

    We added some very important features for implementing the GTD methodology:
    _ Inbox list
    _ Todo list
    _ Calendar
    _ Contexts

    Checkout the help page to find our more on how to use these new important features.

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    the Plancake Bakers

    Permalink | Leave a comment  »

    ]]>
    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/10/21/plancake-130-is-out Wed, 21 Oct 2009 17:51:50 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/10/21/plancake-130-is-out
    Plancake 1.1.0 is out
    I am glad to announce the version 1.1.0 is out.

    This is mainly a release to improve the usability, that is make Plancake more intuitive and more easy-to-use.
    After the previous release was out, we asked some users how they wanted the interface to be like. We put all the ideas together and... Plancake 1.1.0.

    For more info, check the roadmap page out.

    Thanks for using Plancake,
    the Plancake Bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/10/13/plancake-110-is-out Tue, 13 Oct 2009 10:54:21 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/10/13/plancake-110-is-out
    Best browsers for using Plancake as you probably know, browsers differ on how they display the web pages. Some browsers are more capable as accurate, some others are a bit buggy.

    Our tests show the best browsers are:
    _ Firefox (you can download it from www.mozilla.com/firefox for free)
    _ Google Chrome (you can download it from http://www.google.com/chrome for free)

    Internet Explorer 7 didn't satisfy us very much.

    If you haven't done it yet, start using Firefox or Chrome...it is always amazing how free products are better than commercial ones.

    If you have Internet Explorer 7 and you want to stick to Internet Explorer, at least upgrade to Internet Explorer 8. It doesn't cost you anything

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/09/26/best-browsers-for-using-plancake Sat, 26 Sep 2009 23:49:21 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/09/26/best-browsers-for-using-plancake
    Plancake version 1.0.0 is out
    I am glad to announce the version 1.0.0 is out.
    I hope you like the new design and the new content.

    Thanks,
    the Plancake Bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/09/20/plancake-version-100-is-out Sun, 20 Sep 2009 23:47:43 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/09/20/plancake-version-100-is-out
    Server Downtime We apologize for the downtime of last night that may have affected you.

    We have contacted our server provider in order to know what happened. The problem was the failure of some hard disks. That is a rare incident.

    Anyway there shouldn't be any problem for the data of our users.

    Thanks for your patience,
    The Plancake Bakers

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    http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/08/23/server-downtime Sun, 23 Aug 2009 15:06:01 +0000 http://www.plancake.com/blog/2009/08/23/server-downtime