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I've been looking for a solution for managing recurring tasks that have to get done every so often and become more urgent over time.

An example would be "water the plants". Ideally I would like to mark the task as done and have it off the radar completely for a week. Then at the two week mark, it would get bumped to "high priority. Then at the three week mark, it would be at the top of my task list as "top priority".

I haven't found software that supports this type of flexibility with urgency and priority. How do you deal with this situation?

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Are you currently managing tasks with software and wanting to migrate to a system that has this feature? As opposed to first time moving from a manual system to software? –  Arbalest Oct 2 '13 at 20:20
    
I'm currently using the tracks web application, but would be open to any solutions (software or otherwise) that make this type of task easier to manage. –  Stephen Ostermiller Oct 2 '13 at 20:27
    
I just checked out getontracks.org -- if that's what you mean, it looks nice. They seem to have a fairly active release cycle so your need might be something worth adding to their list of feature requests. –  Arbalest Oct 2 '13 at 21:16
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2 Answers

Since you are open to non-software approaches I'll tell you what I do. But since what I do is a personalized version of the old Franklin Day Planner system (that I have implemented in a spreadsheet rather than their planner book) I just checked the Franklin site to see what they have.

They do have a software options and from the video I don't see this being demonstrated -- but I suspect it's there. They have a 7 day free trial. Also they demonstrated in the video that on your daily task list, anything not marked as completed today will show up on tomorrow's task list in red.

I'll spare you the whole story of my system but for my daily todo list -- it comes from a sort of template that I create for the days of the week. One column is blank, to be filled in each morning the other column is reoccurring tasks for each or specific days. There are columns for priority and completion status. Completion status is marked in keyboard characters of my choosing and represent the following - not started, started, completed, scrapped, kicked down the road. When I paste the template on to my working calendar I do it for a week or two ahead of me.

At the end of the day, or the next morning, I copy the started tasks forward to the next day, and decide if the not started items are to be scrapped or kicked down the road. For kicked down the road I choose a day in the future to paste it in, and that is the point where I would alter the priority for the task. Only then do I mark the item in today's list as kicked down the road.

I have lots of tweaks to this that I will leave out. But I'll mention that I also have created monthly, seasonal, semi-annual, etc task lists and have them in a separate tab. Those are there as a reminder that these things need to be done but I don't want my one-week template to get any more complicated.... but this does give me some new ideas.

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Emacs org-mode - 2 ways for implementing it

with recurring dates

Emacs org-mode (http://www.orgmode.org) has start dates ("scheduled") and deadline-dates ("DEADLINE") for tasks, which also can be used for recurring tasks.
see http://orgmode.org/manual/Repeated-tasks.html

In the "agenda view" (customizable views of tasks, which can also be filtered/sorted by dates) it shows the days until the deadline is coming and also the overdue days (same for scheduled dates).

I'm sure it would be possible to define a view, where the Item changes its color when overdue for e. g. >7 days. (However I have to admit that I'm not expert enough to provide you a working example.)

with habits

another way which is made for what you need is "habit tracking": http://orgmode.org/manual/Tracking-your-habits.html

The tasks marked as habits are displayed in the agenda in kind of a colored graph which will show you, when a task is "overdue" (image source: http://lists.gnu.org/archive/html/emacs-orgmode/2010-09/msg00238.html )

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