View Single Post
Updating this thread, since I'm about to direct a poster in another thread to have a look at it.

The development team has held extensive discussions about syncing OmniFocus actions to the calendar database instead of or in addition to the ToDo database; for the foreseeable future, we feel it's not the right thing to do. If that changes, we'll certainly make that known.

We feel that actions which have very specific times associated with them - say a meeting that's from three to four PM next tuesday - should defitnitely go on a calendar. Fixed start time, fixed end time. Calendars are really, really good at tracking information like this; they better be, because they've been doing it for centuries. :-)

In addition to the well-defined ones that go on your calendar, there's a second class of actions: these are the ones that OmniFocus is particularly good at helping you with. As an example, one of these actions would be to prepare for that meeting I mentioned in the previous example. That action has a firm end time - when the meeting starts - but doesn't have a firm start time. It could begin in five minutes, or it could begin tomorrow, or it could begin five minutes before the meeting. :-)

Actions like that are the ones that OmniFocus is particularly good at helping you with, but they don't translate well to the calendar. Given the ways that iCal presents event information, we can think of several ways to add items like this to the calendar; none of them would work in every case. That means we probably need to add them all, which means more "stuff" folks using the app have to wade through, and that they'll have to figure out why the choices they made didn't produce the results they expected. (Another alternative would be that we allow you to sync some actions to the calendar and forbid others, which will also confuse and annoy folks.)

After considering these and some other factors, the team feels pretty strongly that using OmniFocus and a separate calendar is the way to go. (Essentially, we recommend adopting the workflow that Yucca advocates in his post.) The calendar provides information about the hard landscape, and OmniFocus helps you fill in the gaps by holding a stack of actions you can pull from as you're able.

Trying to mix the two would be a lot of work and would likely produce results that weren't as satisfying as folks expect from us. In our opinion, it's simpler and more effective to track the things that a calendar is good for on the calendar, track the things that OmniFocus is good for in OmniFocus, and use the two together to be most productive.

Yes, your information is in two places, but that's because the two apps are actually tracking different kinds of information. (There are rare cases where the information needs to be entered in both applications, but we don't advocate double-entry on a regular basis.)

Last edited by Brian; 2009-05-20 at 08:31 AM.. Reason: clarify no need for double-entry