Another day, another convoluted workflow to accomplish something simple.. .

I wrote in my last post about how I was using as my GTD (Getting Things Done) app. It might be less feature-rich than Omnifocus but it seems to do almost  everything I need.

I say almost because Omnifocus does have one feature that I covet: The ability to use Siri to capture tasks. In other words, a person can trigger Siri and say "Pick up my pants" and that task will be added to Omnifocus. To do something similar in I need to open the app, create a quick task (very easy - just swipe down), click the microphone on the keyboard, and dictate my task. Since I'm often thinking of things I need to do while I'm driving I'm not comfortable with this many steps.

From their user forum it sounds like the nice folks at may be working on a solution to this, but I'm not sure when we'll see it.

While we wait for this to be built into the app there may be another [roundabout] solution. I learned today that IFTTT (IF This Then That) now has an iOS app that can use triggers from some of the native iPhone and iPad apps. The apps that can trigger events include Photos, Contacts, and, of interest to us, Reminders.

I took advantage of this to capture tasks with Siri. 

Reminders app icon  

First, I decided to create a new Reminders list on my iPhone called "Do it". This can be done by opening up the Reminders app, clicking "Create New List...", and calling it "Do it".

You'll also need your email mailbox. If you haven't used this already I'd recommend it - it let's you add tasks to your inbox via email. For example, when I get a statement from my daycare I have a rule set up in Gmail to forward it my task mailbox. It shows up in my inbox and I can process it as I see fit.

Your task mailbox can be found on their website or in within the app by going to settings -> account info. For this example let's say my address is

IFTTT mortar and pestle icon

Then, I downloaded the IFTTT app onto my iPhone.  You can create a new recipe by clicking the mortar and pestle icon in the upper right corner. This will expose your recipes, and you can add a new one by pressing the "+" sign. For the trigger, scroll through the options until you find the Reminders app. 

We'll want the option that says "New reminder added to list". The list we want is the one we created earlier, "Do it".

Note: you will probably have to "activate" the Reminders "Channel" to give the IFTTT app permission to access its content.

Next, we'll select our action. I'm going to use Gmail, so I'll make that selection and enter  as the "To address". 

Save the recipe.

I did make one little tweak at this point. Your task in is going to be the subject of the email that you're sending, and I want to keep that as simple as possible. I opened the recipe, clicked "edit recipe", and changed the subject from what it was to just "{{Title}}"

IFTTT: Editing the email subject 1

Now, I can grab my phone, trigger Siri, and say "Remind me to change my socks in my 'do it' list". IFTTT will see this and email the text to, which will add it to your inbox to be processed the next time you open the app.

So, it is a bit of a workaround, but I think it'll get the job done until DoIt comes up with a native solution.


AuthorTodd Zarwell