EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

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Georgo2010
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EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by Georgo2010 »

1. Users have the option to manually change the order of the task lists, but the automatic sorting option is missing (0 --> 9, A --> Z). Manual change the order is very tiring and laborious, Lists become unclear. Can you please Add this option to the Settings?

2. Please confirm and correct the bug: the order of the task list selected from the detail of the task is mistakenly sorted by creating the list and different from the order of the task lists in module Tasks.

ad 2) I recommend replacing the same list of task lists as used to move multiple labeled tasks - the correct order of the actual status lists, the list names are displayed completely. :idea:
Last edited by Georgo2010 on Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

1. There's the automatic sorting option. Please tap on the corresponding icon on the tool bar, you will be able to sort automatically by: Title, Start date, Due date, Priority, Modified.
2. Not sure I understand how to reproduce the problem. Could you please explain it step by step? Thanks!
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by Jeff K »

Thank you for creating, maintaining and improving this program! I have been a pro user for several years.

The main reason I chose this program is the ease with which I can manually drag tasks to rearrange them into the order I need them in, in a hierarchical list. The sequence of these items is nearly as valuable to me as the items themselves.

The main reason I nearly abandoned this program (multiple times) is the difficulty I had getting it to easily and consistently sync with android via USB, in spite of your repeated help. With a new phone, provider and Android OS, the syncing issues seem to be cleared up.

For reference, here are the devices and versions I am currently using:

Essential PIM Pro Portable 7.61
Windows 10 Pro Version 1709 OS Build 16299.192 64 bit
Intel Core i3 3.2 GHz CPU; 4GB RAM

Essential PIM 5.3.5
Android 7.0 build NRD90U on a stock LG-M210 Aristo

Now to the point of this thread:

It appears that George and I would like the same thing. Please speak up, George, if I am wrong.

When I sync between Windows and Android, the sequence of the items in the task list is not the same in Android as in Windows, even with a one-way sync. Why? Please respect that the manually arranged sequence of tasks is a significant representation of VALUABLE, user-created DATA.

(A) At a minimum, please show the lists in the same, user-created order after a sync on both machines. In a two way sync, the latest changes should take precedence over the earlier ones.

(B) Ideally, on the Android device, when the"Manually" option is selected in the "sort by" menu, the list RETURNS to the latest user defined manual sequence. That way, should I want to see the entries using one of the other sorting choices (or as on the Windows version, click a heading and inadvertently sort by it), I don't lose the manual sequence I created, and can get right back to it.

(C) Adding a data column in the Windows version that automatically renumbers sequentially top to bottom when an item is dragged manually would enable this there as well, and could be the mechanism to carry that sequence to the Android device.

(D) The user could edit the numbers in this sort sequence column manually if desired to have things jump to new positions instead of dragging them, with the manually numbered item moving to just below the existing item with that number.

(E) If a group of tasks were selected and the first item in that list was manually renumbered, the selected items would stay in the same order but move as a group to go after the existing item that had that number.

D and E would be especially useful when rearranging long lists on small screens, to avoid lengthy dragging operations.

(F) The automatically generated number sequence could be straight integers, count by 10s or some other increment, or use any one of the many existing hierarchical outline formats. Bonus: Let the user choose between these, and create their own sequences (Year/Month/Day/Hour comes to mind, though each level of the hierarchy could use any list the user enters).

(G) Extra bonus feature: Let the user add multiple sorting columns! The one currently selected as the sort-by column would update as the items were dragged into new positions.

Bug report: On Android, manually sorting is overridden when the screen auto-rotates between portrait and landscape. The sequence reverts to some default sequence. Ouch!

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

Thanks for the feedback. Let me comment on the points mentioned:
a. Will try to improve the situation in the new versions.
b. That's how it supposed to work. Could you please check again and confirm?
c, d, e. Noted, thanks.
g. There's already such feature. You need to hold down the Ctrl key and click on the second column you wish to take part in sorting.

Reproduced the bug in notes, will be fixed in the next version. Thanks!
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by Jeff K »

Thank you for the quick response!

a. I'm looking forward to that!
b. It reverts to something like the previous manual sort, but not exactly in the same order.
g. Thank you for that tip. I was thinking of something different. If you enable the user to add a column that auto-fills a sequence in the current sort order, thereby allowing the user to capture, edit and save a custom sort order, then go the next step, and allow the user to add more than one of these columns. Then the user can create different sort orders in each column, and quickly change the list sequence to any of these manual sequences. (Only the selected column would update the auto-filled sequence as the user rearranges items.)

New stuff:
h. Where in the windows version can I go back to a manual sort order, after I've clicked on a column header to sort in the order of that data type?
i. In the Android version, the yellow circle with the plus sign (add new task) sits partly over the drag bars for the bottom task (in portrait mode) or two tasks (in landscape mode) on the manual sort screen. That makes it more difficult to drag either of these somewhere else.

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

b. We are unable to reproduce that, unfortunately. May I ask you to make a small video demonstrating the problem?
g. Understood, thanks. As a workaround you can already create custom columns but you'd have to populate them with numbers manually.

h. I'm afraid that's not possible at the moment.
i. Noted, thanks!
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by Jeff K »

b. I could not replicate it, either. The sequence did change when I rotated the screen, as per but bug report above. Perhaps I had rotated the screen both ways earlier as I was writing the first note, before I spotted that bug, and attributed the change to the wrong action. Is that the uncontrolled variable fallacy?
g. Then manual population it is. For now. Unless there is a hidden macro feature in epim?
h. Ouch! Please put this very near the top of the list of features. Some might even consider this a bug fix, as sorting by anything else throws away user-created sequence data! Meanwhile, I'll continue to be very careful not to click anywhere near the column titles....sigh.

New thought:
i. The Undo stack does not seem to include sorting changes, but only data entry changes. At the least, clicking on a column heading and losing all of your carefully created manual sequencing should be undo-able.

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

b. It could be but normally it should work as expected and revert back to the previous manual sorting order.
g. Unfortunately there's no macro feature.
h. Will do, although we'd need your input. How would you expect this feature to work?
i. Will think about it, thanks for the suggestion!
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by Jeff K »

g. Are there hooks for external macro programs such as Auto Hot Key?

h. Hmmm. Good question. Here are some thoughts to get the discussion started:

Concepts:
A. A manual sort column must be able to assume the sequence of the items that exist in the list (whether currently visible or not) when it is created or updated.
B. The user should be able to easily designate when a column is to be updated automatically (floating), manually (fixed), or protected (locked).
C. Manually updating the column must be easy.
D. Manually updating the column must be by an action different than the action that causes the list to be sorted by that column.
E. Manual sort columns should be lockable, making them harder to update, if so desired by the user.

The user should be able to change any or all of the manual sort columns to:
* Floating (The sequence updates with every new item added or moved). This is how the manual sort in the Android version should be working now, and how you would expect a list such as an automatic outline numberer would work.
* Fixed (The sequence is fixed and doesn't update). This would be useful for designating items in a sequence of urgency, and then in another column, sorting them in order of importance. Then, by sorting first by importance, then urgency, the most important projects that are most urgent go to the top of the list. Either list sequence can be updated without affecting the other.
* Protected (The sequence cannot be manually updated without first unprotecting the list). This allows some protection from inadvertent updating for a sequence that rarely or never needs to be changed, or is difficult or tedious to create.

Currently, a left click on a column heading causes the list to be sorted in the order of the data in that column. A second left click reverses the list. Therefore, a left click with something else could easily result in the list being sorted by that column if entered imprecisely, rather than having the column assume the current sequence. This would violate concept D.

Currently, a right click on a column heading brings up a list of columns available, and a few extra options at the bottom. Currently, if a user left clicks or right clicks on an item in that list, they get the same result -- the column toggles on or off. Perhaps one of these could be used to toggle additional options. Or, as in menu items, simply moving the mouse over an item in the list that has additional choices causes a submenu of these choices to appear. This would probably be the best and most consistent solution.

So, I suggest adding a sub-menu in the column choice list, for each manual sort column, that lets the user choose Floating, Fixed or Locked.

Add a suitable icon next to that item in the list, and in the list header bar by that item, to reflect the status of that column.

Currently, custom fields are added when editing a particular record. As custom fields then are available in all records, this appears to be more of a global operation than local to that record. I suggest duplicating this custom field creation option to the customize window that pops up when customize is selected from near the bottom of the list header right click drop down menu, or even moving it there and removing it from the record editing window.

Then, when choosing to add a custom field, include options for additional custom field types. It would be good to offer at least a few of the many choices available in the bullets and numbering options of the popular word processing programs of our day. It would be even better to offer the user a way to enter a custom list or rules that would be followed for major, minor and sub headings, etc., to whatever depth desired.

If a column is in floating mode, the outline numbering should follow and update as list items are dragged or moved with the in, out, up and down buttons and shortcuts.

Final though:

i. It would be wonderful if a user could select the visible text on the screen, of multiple columns of data of multiple records, choose copy from the menu or via control-c, and paste those items into a spread sheet, word processor, or other application, as tab or space separated values.

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

g. Nope. However, we might add the feature in the future versions if we see more requests for it.
h. Thank you for the very detailed explanation, will discuss this internally.
i. Noted, thanks again!
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by druths »

For some reason my Android EPIM Pro has stopped sorting Tasks by Priority. Whenever I select to sort by Priority the resulting list appears to be in a random sequence. The sequence in the Windows version is fine. I'm not positive but I believe this started after my last update of EPIM Pro for Windows. My Android EPIM Pro is 5.4, and my EPIM Pro for Windows is 7.62.

Help!

Thanks .............. Dave

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

Unable to reproduce that on our side, unfortunately. Please create a new test task list, create couple of test tasks in it, assign priorities and try to sort by priority, will it work as expected then? If not, would appreciate if you record a video demonstrating the problem. Thanks!
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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by druths »

Okay, I built a Test list in Windows EPIM and added 10 Test Tasks with different priorities (Highest, High, No priority, Low, Lowest). Tasks were entered in number sequence (1 thru 10) but with somewhat random priority values (e.g., No priority, High, Low, Highest, Lowest, etc.). Sorted by Priority in Windows EPIM. No problem. All sorted correctly. Synched up with Android EPIM (automatically). Tasks are not sorted correctly. Tried sorting by Priority multiple times in Android EPIM but tasks do not sort correctly.

I noticed that the tasks with Low and Lowest priorities do not appear to have those priorities in Android EPIM; in the list they look like "No priority" (i.e., no priority icon). Also noticed that if I go in to edit the Low or Lowest priority tasks and back out again (without updating), it appears that their priority is really set to "No priority" because they end up in the list with the truly "No priority" tasks. This re-sequencing happens automatically when I go back to the Task list.

I have images but can't see a way to attach them to this post. I don't know how to make a video demonstrating the issue.

Thanks ............. Dave

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by druths »

And now that EPIM has automatically synched itself between Windows and my Android phone, the priorities on the tasks in Windows EPIM that had been Low and Lowest are now the same as on the phone (i.e., they appear to be "No priority).

(Is there any way I can upload pictures of all this?)

Thanks ................. Dave

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Re: EPIM ANDROID BUG: Sorting task lists

Post by admin »

Thanks very much for the detailed info, it allowed us to reproduce the problem. Will fix in the next release.
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