Pete recently got in touch with us to share a cool tip – In conjunction with Vlingo, he is able to save tasks and events directly to Springpad using only his voice through Springpad’s email in feature. Pretty cool!
Pete has been using Springpad for more than a year and a half. He uses the Springpad Chrome app, Chrome extension and the mobile apps for multiple devices. Pete also shares one account with his wife and his son to help organize household activities.
(Note: more sophisticated collaboration features are on their way!)
I absolutely love all the options in Springpad. I use it for all of my tasks, appointments, notes, reminders, and all my personal management items. All my events automatically sync to my Google calendar. With Vlingo, I am now able to insert tasks and events using only my voice and have them automatically go into Springpad as an actual task and event. Very cool. Now I can add tasks and events even while driving.
Here’s how to set it up:
- Find your personal Springpad email address – Log in at Springpad.com, then go to Settings > Services.
- In your mobile phone’s address book, add a contact called “Springpad” with your personal email address as the email.
- Download the Vlingo app for your mobile device. (available for iOS, Android, Blackberry, and more!)
- Try it out for yourself!
Note: Vlingo for iPhone works best for sending emails to Springpad because you can use colons in the subject. This allows you to specify a Type like Event or Task instead of creating a regular Note. You can still use Vlingo for Android but the language models are slightly different and don’t recognize “colon” like the iPhone app does.
Some examples of things you can say to Vlingo for iPhone:
- Create a task: “email springpad, subject, task colon mow lawn”
- Create an event for a specific date: “email springpad, subject, event colon meeting with principal, message, November 2nd”
- Create a note (specifying a subject line is optional): “email springpad, subject, exercise log, message, ran three miles today in 23 minutes” or “email springpad, ran three miles today in 23 minutes”
Examples of what you can say to Vlingo for Android:
- Create a note : “email springpad, ran three miles today in 23 minutes”
- Create a note: “email springpad, subject February 14th, message It was a great day, I got flowers delivered to me at work”
It can take a couple of tries to get it right but once Vlingo learns a bit more about your speech pattern, you’ll be sending emails into Springpad via Vlingo in no time! Give it try and let us know if there are any other apps you use alongside with Springpad to make it even easier to save your stuff.
When you save things that you want to remember to Springpad, sometimes you still need a bit of extra help remembering those things at the right time – so create a reminder!
Springpad can help you remember lots of different types of things, but there seems to be one thing in particular that gets some of our users really jazzed up – Tasks! So, we’ve taken your input to make a handful of improvements, both on the web & on the iPhone.
Last month, we launched the Springpad iPhone app. We’ve been thrilled with how many new and existing users were able to benefit from being able to save and remember their thoughts and ideas not only on the web but also phones as well.
We’ve been hard at work responding to user feedback, and wanted to share a quick preview with you. Here’s an overview of some of the new features & improvements that should make the Springpad iPhone even easier to use when saving & accessing the things you want to remember:
1. Improved My Stuff navigation
My Stuff has been streamlined to give you faster ways to access your stuff.
- New “All My Stuff” view shows all of your recently added items in one page
- Filter view by type
- Sort by when added, popularity or name
- Swipe across any item to delete it
It’s finally here! We’re thrilled to announce the launch of the Springpad iPhone App – the newest way to save and access all of the information you want to remember.
How it works:
- When you want to remember something you come across, just save it in Springpad – products, restaurants, or books that seem interesting, wines you try at a party, things your friends recommend, or even random thoughts.
- We automatically organize and enhance what you save with useful information like directions, reviews, showtimes, menus, price comparisons, and links to make purchases and reservations.
- When you need it, it’s there for you – on your iPhone and on the web at Springpadit.com.
If you’re looking for an eco-friendly alternative to the traditional PVC dryer ball, you should try making your own! I love this DIY wool dryer ball project from Good Mama. They’re simple to make, colorful and very useful.
Spring the supply list!
-100 percent wool yarn (use scraps!)
-Old pantyhose or a sock
-Cotton or acrylic yarn, or string
-Small crochet hook
Check out Good Mama’s original post for full instructions!
Does my DIY dryer ball simplify my life? I’ll let you know- I haven’t made it yet!
Scheduled Downtime: springpad will be unavailable on Sunday morning 7am-8am (EST) for feature upgrades. Sorry for the inconvenience.
This new release of springpad adds additional flexibility for you to configure your springpads the way you want to help manage your life…
User-customizable springpad templates
1. Tabs: Now add more tabs, rename them & reorder them
2. Add Bar: Now the bar dynamically list the types of things that you most frequently add to your springpad
3. Filtering: Add Narrow to any springpad
Hide complete tasks
Attach notes & files to anything
Add contacts from facebook
1. Facebook integration: Add your facebook friends directly to your springpad
2. Select multiple contact at once
This release includes a handful of new features that will make the Wedding Planner both flexible & powerful. We’ll be introducing the Wedding Planner within the week, so stay tuned!
This week, we are opening up the Alpha version of springpad to a small number of close friends & family. We are pretty pleased with the state of the product today, and recognize that collecting usability feedback is crucial to help us fine-tune our offering.
One of our main tenets in designing springpad is that we are building it for Real People. We believe that Real People want a single path to accomplish basic life tasks, and we want that path to be both simple & apparent. Surely, we don’t want to force changes in behavior in our users just so they can reap the benefit of using our tool. And, we definitely don’t want to leave them confused about how to use springpad.
To that end, we will meet each piece of feedback with four basic questions:
1. What life task was the user trying accomplish?
2. How did they try to do it in springpad?
3. How did we want the user to do it?
4. If there’s a difference, how can we be more clear?
In our internal testing, we’ve found that Question #1 is key. Only by understanding real-life use cases, can we build a product that satisfies the true needs of Real People, rather than just “being cool”.
Here’s an example. In springpad, we have the notions of Appointments, Tasks and Reminders. During internal user testing, Joe said that he wanted a Reminder with two fire times. By forcing ourselves to ask the four questions, we improved both the product & our ability to communicate with our users…
1. What life task was Joe trying accomplish? Remind himself to make a phone call at 2pm. Probing further, we learned that it needed to be at exactly 2pm, because someone was expecting the call.
2. How did Joe try to do it in springpad? By setting up a Task for the call, a Reminder for 1:50 & another Reminder for 2:00.
3. How did we want Joe to do it? We wanted Joe to create an Appointment – it’s the right way to block off time in his calendar & it also has a built-in Reminder. We agreed that it’s confusing to offer three time-based features, forcing the user to make a choice.
4. How can we be more clear?
- We’ll rename Reminders as Alarms, removing some ambiguity.
- Since Appointments already have reminders built into them, we’ll leave the Alarm functionality there, but call it a Reminder because that’s how users think about it.
- We may need to consider adding Due Time to Tasks, which now only have Due Date. If Joe needed to make a phone call sometime today before 2pm, but not at 2pm exactly, it is more of a Task instead of an Appointment. We’ll hold off on this one until more user test cases present themselves.
The next time we are presented with a similar “feature request” from a user, we will know how to back up and ask the right question: Are you trying to do something AT a specific time (Appointment), or do you want to get something done BY a specific time (Task)?
We realize we aren’t perfect yet, but we know that we will get closer by using analytical problem solving while working with our users.