How to Mark a Paperless Item as Complete Without Touching Your iOS Device

Tweet This Post

Plain text rocks, but I've been crushing on the list-making iOS app Paperless recently, and because it stores its data in XML files (at least when using Dropbox for sync), it's difficult to mark an item complete in a text editor. However, it's not impossible.

I would not advise the following steps to anyone other than those who are comfortable editing XML files.

To find the XML files, just go to the \Paperless folder in Dropbox. A typical list item will look like this:



<itemName>Cell phone bill</itemName>





To mark as complete, we have to do two things:

  1. Enter a value for <dateCompleted>

  2. Change the value for <itemCompleted>


<dateCompleted>2014-02-06 15:32:11 -0500</dateCompleted>

<itemName>Cell phone bill</itemName>





Above, I've changed the value of <itemCompleted> to YES. I've also entered a date string for <dateCompleted>. If you use TextExpander, use this data math for the snippet:

%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S -0500

The app uses +0000 UTC time, but above I've chosen -0500 because I live in New York. When I re-sync the app with Dropbox, it shows at the bottom: "Completed: Feb 6, 2014, 3:32 PM" so I know I did the date math correctly.

Last built: Tue, Mar 31, 2015 at 2:05 PM

By Jeffrey Kishner, Thursday, February 6, 2014 at 3:18 PM.