Tendril icon Tendril

Tendril is a tool that helps you break a large task into more manageable pieces, and then keep track of what's done and what's next. It's a Windows application, and it's free and open source.

Photograph: "Bittersweet tendrils" by knitsteel
Image: "Bittersweet tendrils" by knitsteel
Shared under Creative Commons

Tendril is structured around a bunch of goals. You have high-level goals, and you break those down into smaller goals. It can track dependencies — I have to do X before I can do Y. Sometimes there's a snarl, where everything is tangled up in everything else. (This is what inspired the name Tendril.)

Tendril's job is to keep track of what's done, what's blocked, where the snarls are, and what you can work on next.

Current status

Last updated: Sat, 4 Oct 2014

I still like the idea of Tendril, especially the part where it can tell you about circular dependencies. But I've found a tool that does 95% of what I need, so at this point I'm not working on Tendril anymore.

Instead, I just use Sublime Text 2 with the PlainTasks plug-in. Hierarchical to-do lists are trivial, and that's most of what I need.