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Build 358 - recurring task problem?

Kenny Grant's Avatar

Kenny Grant

16 Dec, 2011 09:09 AM

Just noticed my recurrings for today haven't appeared in focus view....or even next view this time.....anyone else got same problem?


  1. 1 Posted by Kenny Grant on 16 Dec, 2011 09:38 AM

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    It works if I refresh the page - didn't have to do this on previous builds....would do automatically as soon as the page took focus

  2. 2 Posted by Folke on 16 Dec, 2011 11:45 AM

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    Maybe it has something to do with the new server-side control described in the release notes. I have noticed that I now get a button showing up asking me if I want to update the Focus list with scheduled and due tasks - I suspect for that reason.

    Actually I welcome the change, as I have found it irritating to have things slip in unnoticed on my Focus list, but now that problem seems to be gone:

  3. 3 Posted by Kenny Grant on 16 Dec, 2011 12:30 PM

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    Problem is you never know for certain if you've refreshed that day......so you end up refreshing every time you use N2 effectively slowing it down.

    Please bring it back guys.

  4. 4 Posted by Folke on 16 Dec, 2011 12:53 PM

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    It seems you are having a different problem than I first thought. Did you even see the button?

    The button I am referring to only appears once per day - if there is anything new to show. There is nothing you need to refresh on a just-in-case basis - because if there are any new tasks due or scheduled that day the button will show up for you to see (and click).

    So this must be some other bug, I suppose

  5. 5 Posted by Chris Webb on 16 Dec, 2011 12:59 PM

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    Folke - I've never seen this 'button' of which you speak and I suggest it IS something (as you suggest in the other thread) that you get if you leave your machine on over night as I always shut mine down?

  6. 6 Posted by Folke on 16 Dec, 2011 01:05 PM

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    I shut mine down yesterday, and the button appeared this morning. But as this is only the second day after the update it is hard to know how reliably it works. Maybe there is a glitch somewhere, with some browsers or whatever. I am using FF8 on a Win7 machine.

  7. 7 Posted by Chris Webb on 16 Dec, 2011 01:17 PM

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    Interesting - I'm on Chrome (latest build) and Win 7 and I've never seen it, AND I have had some scheduled tasks pop into Focus this very morning..........curiouser and curiouser.....

  8. 8 Posted by Kenny Grant on 16 Dec, 2011 01:28 PM

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    OK wasn't aware of this button, can't remember if it was there - will wait until tomorrow to see.

    I never shut N2 down - takes too long to reload....I definitely don't want a GTD system that I have to reload, even infrequently.

  9. Support Staff 9 Posted by David McLaughli... on 16 Dec, 2011 10:53 PM

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    OK - time out! There are a few different things you guys are talking about, mostly related, but let me see if I can clear them up for you -- BTW, I'll be working on some docs over the weekend that will go into more detail and hopefully clear-up some of these areas.

    BTW, the button only appears if there is a reason for it to do so, if you've never seen it you're good. The button appears when the app recognizes there are items that would be in focus, if a refresh was done.

    First, lets talk time. If you have not yet done so after the new release, you should logout & login so we have your proper UTC (aka GMT) offset - that determines when the server fires the routine to do the recurring, scheduled, and due date movements into focus. The way we've got it set right now, those actions take place after 1 a.m. based on your UTC offset - it was done at 1 a.m. not midnight because of potential daylight savings time issues for people who have not updated their time. So that might be a bit of a surprise if you work late at night. BTW, an alternative to the login-logout is to go to your account dashboard, do an edit profile, and click save changes - even without a change of data - and that will also update the offset based on the device used.

    It might have been a bit clearer in the blog post, but typically the button @Folke referred to is intended to be used when in a non-connected mode so that you could still have the ability to get things in focus if you wanted to when not connected -- the fact that @Folke is seeing it daily is not normal, unless he's not connected to the network in those cases. @Folke - interesting that you like it that way, I suppose that could be made a user preference - not sure how many would agree with you though :-)

    @Kenny - this section's particularly for you. There's nothing to bring back - nothing has changed in the way the device update process works. It just appears to have now that the server is doing the work on the 'focus' type tasks. (I'm hoping to have enough time this weekend to do three long docs that will tie all these concepts together, without causing the majority of people who don't really care, to go berserk).

    Many people think that we push out information from the server to the device, actually the device pulls from & pushes to the server. A timed, repeating-task runs on the device, determines if any changes have been made that should be sent to the server. If so, the device pushes those changes to the server AND then pulls any changes that might have been made by other devices or generated by the server jobs. If no changes are detected on the device, no call to the server is made. A call to the server is forced by doing a page refresh, or by using the refresh button on the top bar. A tab being un-focused and re-focused, only checks for changes to see if a call should be made, it doesn't force a call to the server.

    Why it appears to be a change in behavior, is that when the recurring, scheduled & due calculations were made on the client, they actually caused the client-side data changes, which were then pushed to the server at that point. So those are what really changed, not the actually device update process.

    If you had made a change to a task/project, etc. - then the focus tasks would have been refresh from that action, because of the device push/pull and you wouldn't have had to do a page refresh.

    I hope that was clear -- like I said I'll be doing more documentation this weekend.


  10. 10 Posted by Folke on 17 Dec, 2011 11:14 AM

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    @David, Here is a technical clue: My computer is never taken offline, as far as I know, but it does go into energy saving mode. Or maybe my internet connection has temporary glitches that my other software is less sensitive to..

    @David/All - with a big smile on my face: I never really believed this was intended as an intentional improvement to make it easer to see "incoming" tasks. But you must admit it serves that purpose. And I loved it. Maybe I am too spoiled by email systems where at least they have the "decency" to boldface the new arrivals for you :-)

  11. Support Staff 11 Posted by David McLaughli... on 17 Dec, 2011 05:53 PM

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    @Folke -- that actually might explain your seeing of the button - assuming that the network card is put to sleep in energy saving mode which is done in many setups.

    The idea of highlighting newly added items to focus could be done - be harder to turn off the highlight unless we added a flag (turn-off after being touched) or did it on some arbitrary basis by time, etc.


  12. 12 Posted by Jeff Maynes on 19 Dec, 2011 01:51 PM

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    Thanks for the explanation on this David, I was also a bit perplexed by the button behavior. I have it every morning when I open Nirvana - even if I refresh the window, or hit Nirvana's own "Refresh" button. Once I use the button, everything is up to date and it does not appear again. It's not a real hassle, though obviously it is not expected behavior.

    I don't meet Folke's conditions (it is shutdown in the evenings, and is not going into energy saving mode). I'm using Chrome for Linux.

  13. 13 Posted by Phil on 19 Dec, 2011 05:46 PM

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    Maybe its just me, but I find all of this confusing; whereas, it use to just work.

    I just logged into Nirvana for the first time today and see that there are tasks that were due today but have not been automatically moved to my focus list. Furthermore, the bring focus up to date button is not visible for me. Maybe the lack of the update button is a bug.

    So now I have to bring all these tasks over to focus manually?

  14. 14 Posted by Kenny Grant on 20 Dec, 2011 03:18 PM

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    @David - thanks for the explanation but unfortunately I'm still confused....

    In your section directed to me you state:
    'There's nothing to bring back - nothing has changed in the way the device update process works. It just appears to have now that the server is doing the work on the 'focus' type tasks'

    The assertions 'nothing has changed' and 'it just appears (to have changed)' are conflicting IMO - any change in behaviour perceived by the user, whether client or server or anywhere, is a change......simple as that?

    Can you summarise for me what has changed for me as user who used to happily have his focus view automatically update? If this will be included in the docs you mention then great - but please leave out technical reasons in the docs and just concentrate on how the behaviour of the app has changed from a user perspective....the rest of it is clouding the issue for me.

  15. 15 Posted by Kenny Grant on 21 Dec, 2011 08:54 AM

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    Came to N2 this morning (still open from night before) - clicked to next list, then back to focus list.....no button on focus panel telling me I need to refresh.

    I know I had some new daily recurrings so I refreshed browser - and then focus list updated with new tasks.

    Surely this can't be intended behaviour @David?

  16. 16 Posted by Geert on 23 Dec, 2011 08:25 AM

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    Same here as with Jeff Maynes and Folke.

    I have the button in 'Focus' every morning. When I click it a dialog box opens, and when I click the box, 'Focus' gets updated. I also shut my computer down in the evenings (latest Chrome version on Windows XP).

    I agree with Folke that it is useful, because you see what gets added to your list (although maybe that wasn't the original idea behind the button). The additional dialog box is not needed, though, IMO. Once you click the button, the list should just update. Having new actions on your list highlighted for some time would also work, ofcourse.

  17. 17 Posted by Jack on 23 Dec, 2011 09:35 AM

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    Well, I don't like the idea because on my mobile the "Bring in Focus" button never appears and that's why my Focus is ALWAYS empty and I can do nothing about it.

  18. 18 Posted by Folke on 23 Dec, 2011 10:04 AM

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    It is pretty obvious that all there are bugs or flaws in the new design. It cannot all be explained as intended behaviour - nobody would have those kinds of intentions :-)

    But at the same time I can respect the team's cautious attitude. They have changed the inner workings because the old system was not working properly either. They now have to be able to identify the causes of the new strange behavior in order to be able to fix the problem. This means they must first eliminate all extraneous reasons, such as old data caches etc. They will find the bugs sooner or later, I'm sure, if we keep giving them information about how it works from our end.

    New clue to David:
    Even after I get my Focus list updated with all the new tasks, the Bring to Focus button keeps reappearing over and over again, no matter how many times I press it, even if there are no new tasks to fetch. The button does go away when I click the Focus list in the left navi, though (and stays away until the next day).

  19. Support Staff 19 Posted by David McLaughli... on 04 Jan, 2012 01:37 AM

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