An E Ink Display Is Perfect for This Raspberry Pi-Based Task Organizer

Organization and productivity apps, devices, and “life hacks” are all incredibly popular, and prove that most of us are desperate to do as much as we can with the little bit of time we have available. You might use something as simple as the calendar app that came built into your smartphone, or maybe you take advantage of more robust tools that allow you to track every minute of your day. At either extreme—or anywhere in-between—you’ll likely want an easy way to see a list of your tasks and appointments at a glance, and this Raspberry Pi-based Task Organizer with an E Ink display is perfect for that job.

An E Ink display is desirable for applications like this, because it won’t draw any power at all unless the screen is being refreshed. That’s particularly handy if you’re running it off of a battery. E Ink displays are also very easy to read in bright light and at extreme viewing angles. They’re available in a variety of sizes and even color schemes, but keep in mind that three-color E Ink displays take substantially longer to refresh—often by several seconds—than the monochrome models. But that shouldn’t be an issue unless you need the display to update frequently or immediately after the information has changed.

In this build, the 7.5” ePaper display is controlled by a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ through a HAT. The code for the task organizer is completely custom and was programmed in Python. It pulls in weather information from Open Weather Map, calendar entries from Google Calendar, and simple to-do lists from Todoist. To help alleviate the issue with three-color refresh times, this code first refreshes the black portions of the screen, and then fills in the color (red) accents. This display and Raspberry Pi are mounted in a 3D-printed frame, and the finished task organizer should look nice and tidy on any desk.

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