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palmin 2008-11-09 11:38 AM

accumulate task estimates
1 Attachment(s)
I have often wanted to accumulate the estimated time for a large number of child tasks.

I have finally done something about it and having made a small script that sums all the children of the selected task and fills out the estimated time to complete in the parent task. Perhaps it can be of use to others than me.

It even has a pretty icon if you want it in the toolbar.

mtheoryx 2009-05-16 10:07 AM

Total time estimates should be built in
Use Case 1: As a user, I want to see the sum of estimated time for tasks displayed in the parent project's estimated time field.

Use Case 2: As a user, when I enter estimated times for tasks in a project, or add new tasks with estimated times to a project, I want to see that time added to the estimated time field for the parent project.

Use Case 3: As a user, when I make a task in a project complete, I want to see that task's estimate time subtracted from the project's estimated time.

Use Case 4: As a user, if I add a task, but do not add an estimated time, the project's estimated time should not change.

mtheoryx 2009-05-16 10:30 AM

Temporary solution until integration by OF
I've sent in a Feature Request to the OF team, and I'm confident they will at least look at it and evaluate the merits and value of the feature shortly.

In the meantime, I've taken palmin's script, and done the following:
1) Place palmin's Sum estimates script in the OmniFocus scripts folder.

2) Use QuickSilver to set up a hotkey keyboard shortcut to run the script.

3) Scope the hotkey within QuickSilver to only work within OmniFocus

* Number 3 is very important. As you start setting up lots of custom scripts and such in your various applications, you don't want to cause conflicts with other system-level or application-level scripts elsewhere. Lesson's from a power user ;P

Overall, a really great script from palmin; however, if you don't have anything selected, it shows an error in a dialogue window. I have two problems with this "default behavior" of the script as-is:

1) I have to use the mouse to click the Sum estimates button in the toolbar
2) If I have nothing selected, I have to click "Ok" or hit enter to dismiss the dialogue box.

A bit tedious when you're managing several time-sensitive projects like web or software development and your clients want to have very good estimates of time for deliverables.

curt.clifton 2009-05-16 11:36 AM

Use [URL=""]Help --> Send Feedback[/URL] to submit your feature request.

mtheoryx 2009-05-18 07:56 PM

Thanks, curt, I did just that.

I've already been contacted by the OF team, and I'm quite satisfied by their answer. They will review the feature request, and that's all I can ask.

That said, anyone stumbling onto this topic, please also send feedback if you want this feature. The number of people requesting a feature can contribute greatly to the likelihood of it being implemented.


mtheoryx 2009-05-19 07:20 PM

Little bug found
So, I found a little bug...

If you have a project called "make coffee" (just a silly example) structured like so:

fill pot with water - 1m
get filter from cabinet - 1m
put coffee in filter - 1m
put filter in coffee maker - 1m
brew coffee - 15m
pour cup - 1m

(obviously these tasks don't take that long, but stay with me here)...

You run the "Sum estimates" script, and it puts 20m in the "estimated time" field for the containing "make coffee" project.

If you mark a few of these tasks completed though, and then try to re-sum the estimates... the time doesn't change.

It appears that the script is not excluding completed tasks.

I haven't the time tonight to work on it, and am no AppleScript guru by any means, so if someone knows how to make the script exclude completed tasks, I'd be indebted to you dearly.

Additionally, sometimes there's a problem if you already have a time estimate in the project's "estimated time" field, and then run the script.

I think it should first clear any values in that field before trying to set a new value, but I could be wrong about the implementation details.


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