A migration tool from CC Things to Wunderlist

I started a crowdfunding campaign to program a tool that migrates all your tasks from Cultured Code Things to Wunderlist automagically. In most cases no manual post-processing is necessary.

Motivation

I love Cultured Code Things. It is simple and I can apply all the concepts of GTD — or only a few. Every device I own (Mac, iPhone and iPad) has their own version of Things. The usability on every supported platform is brilliant. The Synchronization is fast and stable…

BUT:

I am vendor locked to Apple Devices. I like my Mac very much, but sometimes I have to use a windows laptop.

Or what if my next device is an Android device? Conclusion: A multiplatform solution is needed, covering OSX, Windows, Android, Web, iOS ..

Cultured Code Things is the only app that prevents me from switching platforms — in my case from iOS to Android. I spent a great deal of time populating my GTD system, which I’d rather not do again. I need a tool that converts all my todos from Things to a shiny new multiplatform GTD tool. My research has identified Wunderlist and Todoist to be both perfectly suited. My plan is to support both, but I will start with Wunderlist.

Idea

The main idea is to use the automation features of Things to generate a data file that contains all the information you gathered in Things. Wunderlist’s web application has a backup/restore feature that uses a proprietary data format. I will reverse engineer this format (it is JSON) and transform/output its content into a Wunderlist-compatible format.

I do not plan to introduce a cloud service that operates with your private and sometimes secret data. You use the tool locally and upload the whole file to Wunderlist.

Platform

The converter tool will run on OSX Yosemite and later versions because it uses features introduced in OSX 10.10.

There will be an application that can be started without any interaction or additional configuration. It will create a file according to the transformation rules described below.

For power users there will be a command line script that can be configured with custom parameters as a stretch goal.

The tool will be open source. The binaries will be available for download from a public Bitbucket repository.

Transformation rules

Things and Wunderlist support GTD differently. In Things every subtask can have the same metadata as a task. In wunderlist subtasks have neither tags, notes or due dates.

My aim is to transfer all available information from Things to Wunderlist. That is why I will introduce the following mapping, which might be optimised adapted as the project moves along.

  • Things projects will become Wunderlist tasks
  • Things top-level tasks will become Wunderlist tasks
  • notes, tags and dates that belong to a Things project or top-level task will become notes, tags and dates on a Wunderlist task
  • tasks within Things projects will become Wunderlist sub-tasks
  • the horizon of focus in Things will become a tag in Wunderlist
  • areas of responsibility end up as Lists in Wunderlist
  • tasks that are planned for “today” in Things will be starred in Wunderlist
  • dates and notes of Things projects tasks will be attached to the parent task’s note in Wunderlist
  • tags that are on a Things project task will be attached to the parent task in Wunderlist
  • the Things inbox will become an ordinary list in Wunderlist (please move the few items in there by hand to the Wunderlist inbox)
  • Things tasks that don’t have an area of responsibility will be placed in a default list in Wunderlist
  • If you use persons in Things, your tasks can be found in a list named after the area of responsibility. For now tagging the task with the persons name is not planned, as I believe the feature is rarely used
  • Reoccuring tasks will not be exported from things (in the initial release)

Again, thank you for supporting my indiegogo campaign.