Dabble DB

The Dabble Blog

Introducing Dabble Do

We're very happy to announce our second product: Dabble Do, a social to-do list.

The interaction's the thing

With social to-dos, it's all about the interactions. Everyone has their own list of the items assigned to them. Like with any to-do list, you can assign items to yourself, but the more interesting part is that you can also assign items to your friends, and be kept up-to-date on their status.

Whenever someone assigns you an item, depending on how you're feeling, you can respond to it in a number of ways:

  • Industrious: complete it by checking it off;
  • Contrarian: reject it by sending it back to the assigner; or
  • Lazy: "pass the buck" and reassign it someone else

If you have assigned the item to a friend, you can "crack the whip" to remind them of it. It's also great for those of you who just like to crack whips.

One of the most important things for us has been to keep the experience as simple as possible, to make sure the software stays out of the way.

Less features

One of our early users described Dabble Do as "primitive to the point of usefulness", which was music to our ears. Unlike with Dabble DB, which aims for supreme flexibility to support business users, we've used constraints all over the place to make Dabble Do as consumer-friendly as possible. For example:

  • an item is assigned to one and only one user: if the assigner gets this wrong, you can always pass the buck anyway
  • while Dabble DB allows you to view items in many ways, Dabble Do just shows them to you in whatever way makes the most sense at the time

That Dabble DB feeling

While we've endeavoured to tip the scales away from power and towards simplicity, there are some powerful things you can do that only make the user's experience simpler. One feature like this we've borrowed from Dabble DB is the flexible date/time handling. In Dabble Do, you can enter dates/times like "next wednesday" and "two weeks from now" and it will Just Work.


The number one thing we've done in the name of simplicity is to outsource the social network itself to Facebook. For anyone away on walkabout for the past year, Facebook has grown into one of the biggest and best social networks out there. If you've only been on walkabout for a few months, the launch of Facebook apps has provided a way for third parties to plug new functionality into this growing network.

Since this launch, there has been an explosion of entertaining, fun, if not generally useful apps clamouring for users' attention. We'd like Dabble Do to be a poster child for what a Facebook app can really be: built to fit into the network, maintaining the feeling of fun that Facebook has established, but being truly useful.

We've also tried to make the experience as user-focused as we can: we don't demand that a user spam all their friends as their first act upon adding Dabble Do. Instead, we let them invite their friends gradually, when they actually have something they'd like their friends to do.

We've been playing with Dabble Do for a few weeks now, and it's been a lot of fun. As of today Dabble Do is open to the public, so you can play too. We're hoping you enjoy it as much as we have: check it out



  1. Lester Lee says:

    Ben: Iron my shirt

  2. charlie says:

    i like this app so far. i watched your demo video and tried out dabble db probably about a year ago, and i've been reccomending that people check out dabbledb since then.

    if you have any feeback or suggestions about working with the facebook platform, please let me know.


  3. donovan says:

    i've installed this and so have a few freinds. when they assign me something, i can't seem to check it off once i've done it. i don't get it.

  4. Alan says:

    I guess this app has been removed from Facebook now? When I sign up for it, the app info / forums are still there, but the app page itself is blank (and in the html source code for the page there is a '404 not found' error)...
    Shame, I wanted to try it out...

    (Using Flock 1.0.5 on MacOS X)

  5. Lawrence O'connor says:

    Got excited about the fbook app.
    Any chance of its return?

  6. Shawn says:

    Is there a non facebook dabble do on your website somewhere? I've been looking for something like this. I'm curious why you haven't answered the (comment questions above.


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