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-   -   The Hit List (http://forums.omnigroup.com/showthread.php?t=11010)

HyggeligKar 2009-01-09 07:50 AM

The Hit List
 
Hello,

I'm an OmniFocus user, but I wondered if somebody has tried the Hit List [url]http://www.potionfactory.com/blog/[/url]

It looks kinda nice, better than things even, but as long as the other folks don't support Sequential / Parallel projects I won't even bother to try them for more than a few minutes. Escaping the mess of tasks you can't act upon and just display the relevant information is I think OmniFocus advantage.

What do you guys think?

Toadling 2009-01-09 10:28 AM

I haven't tried the Hit List yet. Unfortunately, I think the app is a bit late to the party. It would take something truly spectacular for me to give up OmniFocus, which I've been quite happy with.

However, I did see a screenshot of Hit List somewhere a few weeks ago; not sure where as I can't seem to find it now. But my initial impression was that it looked pretty nice, as does Cultured Code's Things. But of the three (Hit List, Things, and OmniFocus), I still think OmniFocus looks the best from a purely aesthetic standpoint. It's clean and simple and feels lightweight, belying its position as arguably the most capable and feature-rich of the three apps.

Competition is good though. So I'm happy to see another task manager being born. :-)

-Dennis

Lucas 2009-01-09 03:28 PM

I tried it. I think it's ok. It has tags for contexts (or whatever else you want to use them for). You can't select multiple tags for a list of actions in either context though. You seemingly can't assign a context to more than one action at the same time. You can't give a project a default tag or context (which I think even Things will do). Seemingly no applescript. Seemingly no service for adding items to the inbox. So it's nice to look at and clearly some thought went into it but it's still a little underpowered in my view.

wilsonng 2009-01-09 04:15 PM

it's still in beta. i just tried it out. The fella doesn't have recurring tasks just yet.

I still like OmniFocus' review feature. Things and The Hit List just doesn't have that (yet). But I guess that's because the weekly review method is emphasized more in a GTD setting than in a plain to-do list setting.

I think some people would like to see more of an interface that you find in the other programs. At this point, OF 1.5 uses the toolbar to show perspectives. Maybe it would be the trick to appease the folks that like the Things and Hit List interface.

Here's an e-mail I sent to the support ninjas:

[quote]Love OmniFocus. Tried looking at Things and The Hit List but keep coming back to OmniFocus.

Maybe people are liking the competitor's user interface and find OmniFocus' user interface a little hard to wrap their head around. Maybe it just needs some renaming on the buttons.

I imagine changing the following toolbar button names to this:

BUTTON #1: Projects -> Planning (this includes the inbox and projects lists/folders). This is where we go through our planning stages.

The sidebar will contain a list of all the projects and folders in the planning mode. Same as what we see in OmniFocus 1.5.

PLANNING (same as current Planning view in OmniFocus 1.5)
* A list of all my projects and folders

* Review - I consider Review an essential part of planning. So it belongs
here. This is the same as sort by review date as seen in OmniFocus 1.5.



BUTTON #2: Contexts -> Focus. Focus might be a better name for this mode. This is the mode where we get our real work done. This includes working by context or by time.

The sidebar will contain a set of default perspectives that can be modified or added at the user's discretion. Perhaps the default perspectives include the following:

CONTEXT (view tasks sorted by project name or task name)
* No Context
* @Home
* @Errands
* @Work
* @Another context

DUE (this is where all the time-sensitive contexts are placed. Same as sorting tasks by due date)
* All (view everything sorted by due date. Same as the OmniFocus 1.5
sort by due date)
* Today (includes overdue)
* Due Soon
* Someday/Maybe (projects on hold)

STATUS
* Available Now (view filter by remaining)
* Flagged - Flagged status is on
* Remaining - view filter is Remaining

These would be the default perspectives placed in the sidebar until such a time when I feel like adding or deleting my own perspectives such as unflagged tasks or something else.

Putting the perspectives in the toolbar can get crowded when you have too many perspectives to include. Maybe it's better to put it in the sidebar instead of the toolbar.

It might be too much to ask beginner users to learn perspectives. It might make sense to add these as the default perspectives until such a time when they want to customize the perspective list.

When users create their perspectives, they can also place the perspective under Context, Due, or Status







Another issue: Adding perspectives to the toolbar.

I know it took me a while to figure out how to add a context to my tool bar. Maybe in the perspectives window, there can be a button that says "Add to Toolbar". This would automatically go into Customize toolbar mode and auto-add the current highlighted perspective into the toolbar. This streamlines the process a little more.


Thanks for listening.

[/quote]

CatOne 2009-01-09 05:32 PM

Perspectives as smart groups
 
You know, you made a comment that actually made me think quite a bit... if you could define "smart groups" which were actually perspectives, that would be a LOT nicer for me.

The main issues I have with OF right now are the inflexibility... and what REALLY gets me is the fact that search misses things (because it does it in your current perspective, and it's not global). It's frustrating when you search for something you KNOW is there and you can't find it, because you're filtering on only available tasks and it's scheduled to start sometime in the future.

Toadling 2009-01-09 10:07 PM

2 Attachment(s)
[QUOTE=CatOne;53425]if you could define "smart groups" which were actually perspectives, that would be a LOT nicer for me.[/QUOTE]

If I remember correctly, the Omni Group originally considered smart folders for the initial 1.0 release of OmniFocus but ultimately settled on the perspectives concept instead. There were some advantages to perspectives that Omni Group felt would work better for the app. I can't remember what exactly those points were, but the ability to save window size and position, item selections, collapsed/expanded state, and focus seem like possible reasons. I don't think you'd get those capabilities with traditional smart folders.

Since then, however, I believe Ken Case has stated that smart folders are being considered again. I don't know if that means as a replacement or in addition to perspectives. But maybe we'll soon have the best of both worlds.

If nothing else, smart folders are at least more familiar than perspectives thanks to widespread use in Mac OS X apps.


[QUOTE=CatOne;53425]The main issues I have with OF right now are the inflexibility...[/QUOTE]

I've always thought one of OmniFocus' greatest strengths was its [I]flexibility[/I]! There are a gazillion ways to view your data - a lot more than most other task management apps. But too much flexibility can lead to increased complexity too. It's a thin line.

On the other hand, I agree there are areas that could be improved: like the ability to control sort direction (i.e. the option to sort ascending or descending) and use of OR operators in configuring perspective (which would presumably be handled by smart folders).

[QUOTE=CatOne;53425]and what REALLY gets me is the fact that search misses things (because it does it in your current perspective, and it's not global).[/QUOTE]

OmniFocus takes a very flexible, straightforward approach: it searches what is currently visible. So search is global if your view is global. And this is exactly how I think it should work. Most of the time, I don't want to search the whole database. And if I do, I just switch to either the built-in "All Items" perspective or use my own custom "All" perspective.

Having said that, I believe Omni Group has mentioned that they intend to add some kind of control to toggle between "Search All" or "Search Current Perspective/Selection." Perhaps this could be implemented as a pulldown menu on the left end of the search field like iTunes uses:

[ATTACH]830[/ATTACH]

Or as some kind of "search option bar" like Finder and Apple Mail use:

[ATTACH]831[/ATTACH]

Either way would be an incremental improvement over having to switch to the "All Items" perspective as the end result would be pretty much the same, I think.

-Dennis

Schlaefer 2009-01-10 12:36 AM

Things was no contender to OF, but THL looks really tempting. Not so powerfull, but [B]very well[/B] layed out with sane standard features.

I'm an instant fan of:
* the card view
* the tabs (seem stable over app restart with view, tag, sorting!)
* the preview for date entering (e.g. enter "monday" in a date field)
* thoughtful keyboard shortcuts (e.g. @ for entering quick context vs. 3xtab in OF)
* the timing feature

My main problem is the imho clumsy Perspective implementation in OF. Sometimes I open OF and get bombarded with four windows I have to close first. It gets the work done, but it is no fun to use (anymore/at the moment).

CatOne 2009-01-10 11:20 AM

[QUOTE=Toadling;53436]...

I've always thought one of OmniFocus' greatest strengths was its [I]flexibility[/I]! There are a gazillion ways to view your data - a lot more than most other task management apps. But too much flexibility can lead to increased complexity too. It's a thin line.
...[/QUOTE]

The issue I have is that I'm typically in views which hide data. In particular, I am showing tasks that are "available" rather than "remaining." If I search in my perspective, I don't see the tasks that haven't reached their start date yet. And I get nervous, as I think I've "lost" the task!

So instead searching has to be a multi-step process: First click on the "show me EVERYTHING" perspective and _then_ search. CLICK CLICK CLICK yuck. Oh, and once I have the results, return back to a perspective that doesn't show me everything I want to see.

As such, an option for global search would be quite helpful, at least to me. The options you've presented would make sense... the dropdown could include "global" or "perspective" and make the choice persistent. That would work for me I think.

ext555 2009-01-10 12:23 PM

[QUOTE=Schlaefer;53440]

I'm an instant fan of:
* the card view
* the tabs (seem stable over app restart with view, tag, sorting!)
* the preview for date entering (e.g. enter "monday" in a date field)
* thoughtful keyboard shortcuts (e.g. @ for entering quick context vs. 3xtab in OF)
* the timing feature

[/QUOTE]

I also love the card view [excellent focus feature ]
Of will already do the date entering, you can enter Monday or even " mon" and OF will pick it up .. 6pm works also if your task is due by a certain time today .
I love the timing feature also [currently using flex-time with apple script to time my current task in OF ]

Schlaefer 2009-01-11 12:08 AM

[QUOTE=ext555;53459] Of will already do the date entering, you can enter Monday or even " mon" and OF will pick it up ...[/QUOTE]

That's right, but THL also immediately shows the day in the popup. You can check while you are typing if the app gets date at all and if it is correct ('oh no, next friday is to late, I need to do it til the 14th' and don't get me started on the "is 'next friday' the friday this week or next week"-issue ;).
If OF doesn't recognize the date you find out after you have left the field and now you have to go back physically and mentally to reenter it.


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