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Mountain Lion introduces another application that's already found on IOS devices: Reminders. Reminders, as the name implies, is Mountain Lions to-do application. Yes, you could create to-do's in the old iCal, but the feature was hidden and not terribly capable. Having them in their own application is a step in the right direction. Let's take a look. Launch Reminders and you see a Reminders entry on the left side of the window and an area for the reminders on the right. So here're my Reminders heading that you will see by default and then any reminders that I have created.
You can create new reminders a couple of different ways: one is you can click on the plus button or you can just click in a space in the Reminders this area and start typing. Now let's click on the Info button and we're going to see a new pane. Within this pane, you can change the name of your reminder if you want to. A few other options. You can also be reminded on a specific day. So select that option, click on a calendar entry, choose a date, and let's say August 18th is a good day to go sailing, and click out of it to set that date.
I can also change the time if I want, so just click here and enter a new time. You can also be reminded at a particular location. If you have location services turned on for Reminders, your Mac will try to determine where it is and then enter something called current location, and then below that will be the address where you are. Now you can configure this so that this reminder will go off when you leave this location or when you arrive. There are other options for setting locations. For example I could type in a new address or I can choose one of my contacts, so I enter a contacts name, or portion of it.
That contact appears in a list. I select them and then their address appears below here. So this could be the contact information for somebody you know or it could be a store that you routinely go to or a coffee shop that you go to. So if you like to be reminded about picking up some groceries, you might set a Reminder so that it goes off when you're close to the grocery store. Now, hold on a second, you are probably thinking. What good is a reminder like this if my Mac is at home and I'm on the road? Well, first of all, it's possible that you'll have your Mac with you if you have a MacBook of some variety and use it to connect to a WiFi network somewhere like at coffee shop for example.
When you connect to the coffee shops network and has set a reminder to go off when arriving, your Mac will learn where you are, using is geolocation powers, and pop up the reminder. More likely however, is that you're traveling with an iPhone or an iPod touch or an iPad. Reminders are synced via iCloud to all of the devices that use your Apple ID. This means that you can create a location-based reminder on your Mac and it will be synced with your iPhone. When you arrive at your destination-- or leave it, if that's the way you have configured it--the reminder will appear.
Now let's finished off with the Info window. Here you can set repeats. So if you'd like this to go off every day, every week, every two weeks, every month or every year, for example, you can choose that. You can prioritize the reminder from low, medium, or high, and you can also add notes. When you are finished configuring the reminder, just click on Done. Now dealing with reminders is simple. When you complete a reminder all you have to do is tick it off. So wash the cat, we have washed the cat, and the cat is now clean.
When you do that for the first time a new Completed heading appears. This is a completed list and this shows you all the reminders that you've checked off. If you want to get with something that's in the Completed list all you have to do is uncheck it and it returns to your reminders. You can create additional Reminder lists. To do that, all you have to do is click on the plus button at the bottom of the window and you have a new list. Then within that list, you can create new reminders.
If you like, you can move reminders between lists. So I'll grab this one here, and I can move into my regular Reminders, and here it is. You can also create reminders that are tied to a certain date. To do that you can just click on a date in the calendar. If you don't see the calendar--it's hidden, for example--just click on the Calendar button and it will appear. Let's say I want a reminder to show up on August 19th. I click there. And here is a reminder specifically tied to that date. If you create a reminder for a date that is already past--so let's go back in time I am going to make this July 4th-- the date will be marked in red as will the checkbox next to the reminder.
This is Reminders's way of reminding you to stop living in the past. Finally it's possible to have reminders for multiple accounts. For example, you might have an iCloud account, a Google account, and a Yahoo account, all of which support reminders or to-dos. To configure an account to use reminders, you could go to System Preferences or in Reminders, go to its Accounts setting, under the Reminders menu. This will launch Mail, Contacts and Calendars. Then you can choose an account. You can switch on Calendars and Reminders, and that gives you your reminders.
Go back to Reminders and you'll see that that account has been added. And with that, you can take "learn about Reminders" off your Things to Do list.
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