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matt1 2007-05-18 05:13 PM

Folders and Projects
I love that Omni has given us folders to help categorize our projects. However, more options also hurts my brain. I've looked at Ethan's folders, and have tried to do something similar. However, I'm not quite satisfied with my set up. Should the folders go only one level deep? And how general / specific should they be?

For instance. I have a folder labeled 'vehicles'. I have three vehicles. Should those three vehicles each have their own folder inside the vehicle folder (vehicle 1, vehicle 2...)? Or should the vehicle folder be the only folder with all projects for each vehicle within that folder.

In the first situation, I could have a folder with vehicle #1 and it's projects (ex. change oil filter which would involve multiple steps...finding correct one, buying it, installing it) along with a project of single tasks (put air in tires, wash car, etc). I'd have a folder for vehicle 2 and 3 and do the same.

In the second situation the vehicle folder would hold all 3 vehicle's projects along with one project for single tasks that would include single tasks for all three vehicles.

I know this is a personal choice, but I'm curious how others have gone about using folders vs. projects. I've tried to go by the mantra that if it can be completed it's a project, if it can't it's a folder, but it hasn't solved my problem.

curt.clifton 2007-05-18 05:29 PM

I don't have access to the alpha yet, but here's what I do in my current system (hand-rolled in OmniOutliner).

I use top-level "folders" for the major roles in my life. I name these folders as active goals, like "Advance and propagate knowledge of computing" for my role as a Computer Science professor and "Help manage our household" for a portion of my role in my family.

Under each top level folder I have one parallel project for Miscellaneous Non-Project Tasks. Most of the remaining second level items are current projects within that role, though some are subgoals. For example, under "Advance and propagate knowledge of computing" I have a subfolder named "Help Others Understand Computer Science". That subfolder gets all my projects directly related to teaching.

So for your vehicle example, I would not personally create a folder for vehicles or for each vehicle (unless perhaps I saw one of my roles as being a car collector or hobbyist). Instead, I would create a project "Changed Oil in Tacoma" under the Help Manage Our Household folder. (Also note that positive statement of the project. To me this is part of envisioning the outcome.)

Using folders for ongoing life roles and goals helps me focus on what is important. The individual projects within those roles and goals will come and go.

Craig 2007-05-18 06:01 PM

I do the same - project groups for my "areas of responsibility." I have my singleton "project" outside of the groups, though. (It hadn't occured to me to break those up.)

This works well at weekly review, because I can at a glance make sure that all of my areas of responsibility have active projects (which seems to me like a good goal to have).

LizPf 2007-05-19 05:57 AM

My folders are 2 deep right now, and I may go deeper.

My top level folders and projects are different "jobs" in my life, where the things I need to do are very different: Housewife; Cartesian Bear; Kidstuff; etc.

Kidstuff has 2 folders, one for each kid, plus one project, Kid Singletons, for actions that affect both kids at once.

The nice thing about the folders is that we can each use them any way we want or not use them at all. Our choice.


matt1 2011-09-10 07:52 AM

I guess 4 years later isn't too late to say thank you for the responses. They certainly helped.

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