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Originally Posted by convergent View Post
Turbo... haha... that's a good one. :)

I think I have a good understanding on what a project is, vs. what an action is. That wasn't really my question. My question was more about the difference between a folder and a single action list. As I said, you can put a project in a single action list, so it seems redundant to set up a separate single action list for every folder.... rather than just putting everything in the single action list.
You give up a fair amount of control by dragging projects into single action lists. You might have to spend a bit more time with the tool before the difference becomes apparent, however. The good thing is that you can always promote those action groups out of the single action lists and back to being projects if/when you reach OF enlightenment :-)

I am also naming my projects with a folder prefix in the name so that they sort orderly in the Context view.
You might also check out the grouping options in the context view for an alternative take on this. You can group by folder, for example, which would put all of your actions from a given folder together in a single group, and you could hide the others while concentrating on one area. Again, something to explore at your leisure.
I think the big thing is really understanding how Omnifocus handles all this stuff so that I pick the right combination of stuff to get the expected outcome. For example, I have a website forum I run... similar to this actually. I have a project called "Update Website X". I am using it to just collect things I need to do on the site... with no particular order right now. The thing is that some of the actions I've dropped into this project, I know I will eventually develop into full blown projects on their own... because they will take me weeks to do once I start them. I've dropped a lot of other actions into the same project that can literally be done in 5 minutes and need to be done soon... for example, adding a new forum for a particular product that was recently released. When I look at my Context view, I am only seeing one action cued up to work on for this project since they are parallel, its picking a "next". If I had put the shorter actions into a separate single action list, I think that OF would be showing the all as next... then I could just pick one and do it. I need to re-read the "book" to remember which is better. One is less "focussed" and one is more "focussed". The reality is that several of them relate to a context that is literally "updating forum software", but I don't want to micromanage my contexts like that. I do in my mind try to group activities like that because I can do them all quicker if I do them at the same time.
There's always just one next action, whether it be in a serial project, parallel project, or single-action list. If you want to "prioritize" some of those actions in a single-action list or parallel project or parallel action group, you can just drag them into the desired order, so you'll see them sooner in the next action barrel. If you only view next actions in context view, you'll have this problem (unless you splinter your stuff into so many pieces that each piece only has one available action). Viewing available or remaining actions at least occasionally will help obviate this a bit, as does looking over all of your projects during the regular review process. The review stuff isn't in the default toolbar, and I think that is unfortunate, because it really does help make sure you get your eyeballs on everything on a regular basis, and that is a big help to keeping things moving.