Boards: make adding cards as smooth as in Trello

I have to confess: I got back to using Trello for my kanbanning needs.

Why? Because it’s just so much easier to add cards in Trello (just type and hit Enter, type and hit Enter) than in Coda, which forces you to add new cards through a modal.

I absolutely want to use Coda instead of Trello. I can make so much more advanced workflows here. Not having a smooth frictionless intake system (i.e. the way in which I would “dump my mind” instantly into lists and cards) is literally the only thing that stands in the way.

This is my legitimate feature request. Please make it so that when I’m in a Board mode, I press Enter and a new card is created. Then not a modal pops up, but Coda lets me type in the main field (display column? or better a designated field) right in that new card. Then I press Enter again, and a new card is created, and the cursor immediately moves there.


Tana is going down the “dump my mind” path as well. I agree with your premise - rapid capture into outline into cards without friction is a very productive approach.

a good request.

in the meantime, i did a workaround for a client some time ago.

above the kanban board is a one-row view of the same table. you enter your details by typing across that one line view. use tab and enter.

the view is filtered to not display rows that have any details. so when you finish entering details, it vanishes f4om that view but apears in the kanban view below.

i will try to find the doc and post it here

I was experimenting with intake methods. The closest I got to the “frictionless” type was this one:


One would write out their lists and tasks (incl. nested tasks) in a big cell like this, and then my code would essentially turn this piece of text into lists and cards with checklists.

The problem with this workflow is that it still introduces mental friction: I first have to neatly write this out, and only then I convert it to cards and can drag them around. Correcting myself (e.g. renaming the card) is, again, a very friction-ful process of opening a modal, editing a field, closing a modal — so I would subconsciously avoid it and stay in this text edit mode until I’m happy with all the task names. But I want to get tactile with cards as soon as I draft them out!

I understand that with Coda, sometimes it takes a little compromise with the UX for the sake of unparalleled power and flexibility. But when it comes to productivity apps, I noticed this in myself (and I think many may relate) that abolishing friction in the capturing-the-data step plays much bigger role than any features, bells and whistles, when it comes to the question of whether the person will keep using the app or abandon it. Or, in other words, no amount of tags, chips, cool image headers, conditional formatting or automations will make it worth it if a user despises (if not avoids) the moment when they have to enter new tasks.


Yep. Precisely.

This is the “outer range” of. It’s-taking. I wrote about it here.

I’ve always imagined what could transform Coda to elevate its game at the top of the PKM funnel.

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