There is a new contender for my affections. CASUAL is a project management app that I learned about this past week.
The only negative thing I have seen so far is that there isn't a free account. However, the pricing is modest, and there is a 'Spectator' role that could let staff see what needs to be done. A Spectator can see the whole project and leave comments without being able to update or edit.
Here are some screenshots of Casual.
Both apps have these features:
- Multiple Workspaces for collections of projects. This is useful for architectural projects - general office - business development -personal projects.
- Projects can be cloned for reuse.
- Comments work the same.
- Grouping of sub-tasks.
- Focusing on your assignments is similar.
- Archiving and retrieval is similar.
- Both have color-coding to add meaning.
- Both allow attachments to a task. Research or reference.
[+T] = advantage Trello
[+C] = advantage Casual
- [+T] Copying, and duplicating is more limited in Casual.
- [+T] I use checklists in Trello a lot. Casual doesn't have checklists.
- [+C] Setting due dates and assigning people to tasks is easier in Casual.
- [+C] By connecting tasks with arrows in Casual you can require a certain work flow. You can have multiple arrows.
- [Tie] Real estate: Trello has a fixed scale but you have unlimited scrolling. Casual can scale the project area to show less or more.
- [+T] Trello’s checklists are a key feature. They allow for a lot of granularity/detail in the tasks. Casual has a note area similar to Trello that could be used for some of this information.
- [+T] Trello is older and has a deeper HELP resource.
- [+C] The drag and drop arrangement of tasks in Casual is very satisfying. That could just be me, but I doubt it.
- [+C] Casual can have Task Groups nested to several levels, which could be very useful.
Overall, the two systems are pretty evenly matched. It comes down to how you would weight the differences. And there is no reason to settle on one or the other. Each may work best for certain issues.
For me Trello is more similar to how I think about organizing projects. It is like a combination of Post-It Notes and spreadsheets.
Casual is like a Pert Chart of your tasks only easier. And probably more intuitive.
My experimenting with nesting of Task Groups gave me results that I couldn’t control. I think there must be an ideal approach that I haven’t discovered yet. My hunch is that you have to work bottom-up rather than top-down, which is the opposite of how I think about project components.
Whereas the Project Board in Trello shows your task lists, which I think correspond very well to project phases, in Casual you see floating, but connected cards, one of which might be the phase in question.
I am inclined to invest $50 or so to see what I can build, and if I can create something to rival the Trello-PM system that I published last year. The organization of the work will have to be re-thought. I suspect that I will make heavy use of the Task Note area in Casual to list out the task details.
You on the other hand ought to at least check out Casual and see if it fills a need. Like Trello, you can plan anything with it.