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Bob,

I also find templates to be extremely useful. They are ideal for frequent projects that occur a-periodically (or have a-periodic components, such as the food shopping I describe below ... ). The first one I made was, just like yours, for packing the night before a trip. Where I'm really finding templates useful though is for errands, especially for food shopping.

In order to do this, I created a series of template projects in a template folder. One is for basic errands (bank, post office, ATM, etc). Others are for frequent recipes that I cook (I have about 20 templates created for these). The tasks in the template project are all assigned to my 'temp' context, which is a dummy context that I never actually look at. (I tried having no context, but this cause some problems.)

Before I go out to shop, I look at my list of recipes and pick two or three. For each one, I use the duplicate command to 'instantiate' the recipe project, which I rename from 'Pasta temp' (or whatever) to 'Pasta 12/8/2008', and then move the newly created project to another folder. Each of the tasks in the Pasta project is an ingredient -- I then scroll down this list -- changing the context for those items I need to buy from 'temp' to 'errands'. I tend to cook about 3 meals per week (and eat lots of leftovers), so I will repeat this instantiation process for two other recipes, as well as for a 'Staples Food' project.

At this point the list of task in my errands context is likely something like ("bank", "post office", "bread", "milk", "tomato paste", "olive oil", "dish soap", ...). I then sync my desktop, sync my iphone, and go shopping from the errands context on the iPhone. (I definitely prefer working from one a single context, rather than jumping around from context to context when I'm out doing errands -- it's incredibly simple if all you have to do bang, bang, check things off the list.) When I get home and resync, the instantiated projects all are empty of tasks (hopefully), and I mark the project complete (and execute an archive to get rid of the extra layer of deadwood ..).

I'm finding this process works beautifully for this kind of ordinary (but not precisely 'every' day) type of thing.

- Art

Last edited by otter; 2008-12-08 at 07:59 PM..