Beeminder Forum

TaskRatchet Development Updates

I’m leaving on a trip and won’t be back until June 19. If you run into any issues or for whatever reason want to reach out, please email me at nathan@taskratchet.com and I’ll try to get back with you as soon as I return from my trip!

Remember, replying to charge emails puts a pause on them, so reply to it as soon as you receive it if you think the charge shouldn’t go through.

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I’ve been back for a while, and working hard on the product! Better update coming soon…

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API

  • Catch charge authorization failures
  • Set chargeable flag to false on user when charge authorization fails
  • Modify stripe hook to handle missing user
  • Catch morning email failures
  • Validate registration requests
  • Fix email-already-taken check when updating /me

Web

  • Improve login form error handling
  • Improve login form loading state
  • Extract input component
  • Add testing
  • Run tests and security audit in CI
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Hi. Just learned about TaskRatchet and signed up, but…I’m unclear about how it works with Beeminder. Do I create a Beeminder goal? And does TaskRatchet rely exclusively on me saying that I completed my task?

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Hi, @astrotsarina. Great questions!

You can use TaskRatchet without connecting it to Beeminder at all. Just add a task, and TaskRatchet will charge you if you don’t complete it by the deadline you set. The Beeminder integration allows you to have TaskRatchet post to a Beeminder goal when you create a new task.

That’s right, TaskRatchet relies on you to tell it when you’ve completed a task. We don’t double-check that you’re telling the truth. If you’re looking for something that does that, Boss as a Service is probably closer to what you’re looking for. Unfortunately I don’t think they’re currently accepting new users.

Please let me know if you have any more questions, issues, or feedback! You can also email me at nathan@taskratchet.com

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I was curious to how Taskratchet compares as a service to a website like www.gofuckingdoit.com (sorry for the foul language) I know it has the Beeminder integration and that’s really neat. But just wondering.

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Interesting! I just made a goal using GFDI and here are my notes:

  • TaskRatchet lets you set a pledge of any dollar increment from $1 to $2,500, whereas GFDI only allows pledges of $25, $50, $100, $250, and $1000.
  • TaskRatchet tasks are on your honor, while GFDI requires that you pull a “supervisor” into the deal to ensure you’re playing fair.
  • TaskRatchet lets you mark a task complete any time between now and the deadline. GFDI waits until the deadline and then emails your supervisor to ask them if you completed the task or not.
  • TaskRatchet lets you login to see a list of all your outstanding tasks, as well as a history of all your previous tasks. GFDI doesn’t appear to have login or account functionality.

GFDI looks to be a way to set up weasel-proof commitments for large one-time milestones.

In contrast, TaskRatchet is a todo app with built-in commitment contracts on your honor that works great for tasks of any size.

Hope that helps!

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https://taskratchet.com/ - “launch app” is demanding to register and login before linking app store.

Not sure how many people were lost there, I certainly stopped (in such case I always want to see reviews before registration).

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Unfortunately there isn’t a phone app yet, it’s just in the browser. Definitely on the list of things to do though!

Then why it is describe as “launch app” if there is no app? If I would know that it works as web page then maybe I would actually try it!

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Hmm, that’s a great point! Would it be less confusing if the button was “Launch Web App?”

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Yes, it would be much better. I was sincerely sure that it is iphone/android app, not a website.

(personally I dislike name of web app - just call it website - but that is likely just my personal preference)

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What about just “log in” and “sign up”? No “launching”, no “apps”.

(Btw, I think “login” is the noun and “log in” is the verb.)

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I’ve started posting UVI’s to the TaskRatchet Twitter account. @zedmango, I think that may be the feature announcements you were wanting?

API

  • Deployed a quick fix that lets me manually turn off morning emails on a per-user basis
  • Added a note to the bottom of morning emails letting users know they can ask me to do that
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Note: I am a dinosaur that deliberately has no browser on smartphone.

Landing page is giant photo of person using computer in uncomfortable and dangerous position, and no clear info how this actually works ( https://taskratchet.com/ )

https://app.taskratchet.com/ has massive amount of unused space and still no clear explanation

“24 hours after that, the charge will be captured.” is completely unclear technical term - is it about reversibility of charge and how refund is done on a technical side? (from https://docs.taskratchet.com/faq.html )

https://docs.taskratchet.com/faq.html is not answering how TaskRatchet “knows” about whatever goal is completed. Is it just manual data entry? If yes, then it is basically interface to quickly create oneshot Beeminder goals (it may be still useful for people! Interface may be a difference between DOS and Windows 3.1).

BTW, your ToS forbids opening more than one tab with TaskRatchet or entering any data on the site, even registering is violation of ToS as it not only viewing page (“Permission is granted to temporarily download one copy of the materials (information or software) on TaskRatchet’s website for personal, non-commercial transitory viewing only.”).

" Can I try TaskRatchet out without adding my payment details?

Currently you can" - it seems to not be possible

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@beeminder_user Thank you so much for this feedback! It’s all great. I’m sorry I haven’t had time to respond, but I do intend to.

API

  • Fix some bugs with how the app was handling users who hadn’t successfully added a Stripe payment method. Namely, if we don’t have a payment method on file, don’t try to charge them!
  • Added a default timezone for users who had managed to register without setting a timezone. Shouldn’t be possible, but there’s been a bug where it could happen on occasion.

Web

  • Added a help link to the footer
  • Fixed a bug where registration was redirecting to Stripe even if registration had failed
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@beeminder_user Thank you again for this feedback! It’s super helpful. Let me run through it real quick, and please feel free to push back on anything I say:

  • Landing page critique: Absolutely agree. Landing page redesign is definitely on my list of things to do, and I’ve registered your vote on that. (Tasks with more votes on them get pushed up my private list.)
  • Unused space, etc: I’m not so worried about unused space. :stuck_out_tongue: The app being unclear how to use, however, definitely want to make sure that gets improved!
  • "Capturing:" Totally agree! I’ve pushed an update to that FAQ item, though it still needs some improvement.
  • What does it do?: Yes, another great suggestion. I’ve added an explanation to the FAQ. TaskRatchet is for one-off tasks, whereas Beeminder is best for ongoing goals, so the two services are met to optimize for different use cases. Also, TaskRatchet doesn’t currently have any auto-data integrations, though I have some ideas as to integrations to add in the future. Are there any services you’d like TaskRatchet to pull data from automatically?
  • ToS: Sigh, yes, the obligatory legalese. :stuck_out_tongue: I’ve modified the license to try to make it a bit more lax.
  • Using without payment method: It’s not a method of use that I want to actively support, so I’m not going to add instructions to the FAQ. :stuck_out_tongue: I’m looking forward to the day when I can modify the FAQ to truthfully say that this isn’t possible at all.

I think I got everything.

Keep the feedback coming! :smiley:

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Update

API

  • Modified API to never allow an invalid timezone to be set on a user
  • Added logic to retry Beeminder API requests a couple of times if they fail
  • Added support for &goal-name tags for specifying Beeminder goals to post to on task creation
  • Added support for *goal-name tags for specifying Beeminder goals to post to on task completion
  • Fixed a bug with aforementioned asterisk tags that would post to the goal when task was marked incomplete. Oops!

Web

  • Updated some dependencies to fix security issues
  • Started displaying the user’s timezone in the new task form
  • Linked the timezone to the docs page on timezones
  • Rebuilt tasks page using a state machine to fix some weird bugs
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Update

Web

I updated the web app to better honor the user’s locale preferences when displaying due dates.

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Update

API

  • Added support for /me/task/[id] route
  • Make API send charge notification emails as soon as it notices a task is late, instead of waiting 24 hours at minimum
  • Add a 7-day Statute of Limitations on charges, to prevent users who didn’t have a working payment method from getting charged for old tasks as soon as they add one
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