Potion Factory has released a public preview of The Hit List today. The Hit List is a brand new task management app that takes a welcome departure from current offerings, combining simplicity and power in a polished user interface that never ceases to delight. While based around the concepts behind the GTD (Getting Things Done) methodology, The Hit List won’t impose a system on you and there is no requirement to understand any of those things.
The Hit List is, as the name suggests, based around lists. You can create separate lists for each set of tasks you need to manage, whether a work project, plan for a trip or anything, really. There are also some special lists such as Inbox, for collecting tasks, and Today and Upcoming to keep track of tasks, and you can create smart folders too. Lists are in outline form, a perfect way to organize your thoughts, with each task an item in the list. Tasks can have start and due dates, estimated times, tags, notes and attachments and can be organized into folders.
For me, what makes The Hit List stand out is how straightforward it is to use. Hit Return to create a task, and start typing. Tags are inline, prefixed by the / character, and appear as highlighted text. Context tags start with the @ character. The Hit List can also predict tags as you type.
Typing is a big part of The Hit List, and almost everything to do with creating and working with tasks can be accomplished with a number of single-character shortcut keys, such as T for today or F to file tasks. And if you’re wondering how you would ever remember all this, a Hints bar is shown along the bottom of the list and changes depending on the context. Of course, you can accomplish everything with the mouse too.
Add to this the tabbed interface, a tag browser, where tags can be organized into bundles, a contextual tag filter and cleverly implemented iCal sync and this app appears to want for nothing. Well, apart from an iPhone version, which is planned. And that’s the amazing thing: this app is feature packed, but to just look at it, you would never realize. The Hit List strikes the perfect balance between simplicity and power.
While public preview continues, you do not need a license to buy The Hit List, but at the time of writing, you can for a special price of $49.95. The normal price will be $69.95. The Hit List requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later.
Normally, I only write about Mac software I’ve had the opportunity to beta test, but with The Hit List, while that is true, the story is somewhat different. Potion Factory developer Andy Kim is a very good friend of mine, and I have watched him sculpt this application for well over a year now. I know and appreciate the time and effort he has invested in every detail, and I have looked forward to the day when he shows it to the world.
Congratulations to Andy on this release and if you’re interested in a task management application that doesn’t leave you dumbfounded, check out The Hit List from Potion Factory without delay.