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Context for projects? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Why would you have a project without any actions?

If a project only shows up in no-context, when there are no actions for it to complete... shouldn't you complete it or add actions?
 
I should mention that if your availability filter is set to remaining, then you'll see all projects. I rarely use the remaining available filter, because I only want to see actions I can actually work on... so my availability filter is set to available. In which case you'll only see projects in the no context grouping that don't have a next action assigned.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by makesense View Post
I see the following problem here:

I will have a lot of project without contexts. I will also have a lot of actions without contexts. .
Hm... I think you might want to avoid having Actions without Contexts. In the context of this application (sorry) "Context" indicates the indispensable setting in which an Action can be completed (Phone, Home, Computer, Internet, Grocery store, etc.). If you cannot think of the indispensable setting for the completing of a give Action, it will be difficult to bring yourself to do start and complete the Action.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by imlad View Post
Hm... I think you might want to avoid having Actions without Contexts. In the context of this application (sorry) "Context" indicates the indispensable setting in which an Action can be completed (Phone, Home, Computer, Internet, Grocery store, etc.). If you cannot think of the indispensable setting for the completing of a give Action, it will be difficult to bring yourself to do start and complete the Action.
I'd better have another item in options or in filter.

I'm happy for you if you always can and want to waste time to assigning contexts.

I have a project oriented action workflow and not contexts. I do things when they become yellow and red (time for action according to calendar) and not when context becomes available. I can do most of my actions at any given moment so I'm still priority and importance oriented and not place or way-of-doing oriented.

Most of my actions are work related and at work I have several contexts to do any action and I have 6 means to communicate, delegate and monitor almost everything. I usually don't know what will be the most appropriate way to assign the context time- and resource-wise before it is almost time for action. I wished my actions would be like do homework or buy ice cream - but they are not.

I find myself to never use contexts in OmniFocus when performing actions. Maybe that is because I'm used to another workflow in Excel spreadsheets which I used for ToDos for ages, maybe I'm not a fan of GTD, or maybe I don't like contexts of OF particularly. Because when I used Things I used contexts window (often multiple contexts).

On the other hand I have a lot of actions and projects - so I don't want to waste those seconds to assign contexts which are almost useless for me.

Much more important for me to hide projects (having no actions at all, no next actions or no available actions viewable in accordance to filter) as my tree is big.

Last edited by makesense; 2010-11-27 at 09:28 PM..
 
I have one project, staff scheduling, where the context doesn't really matter but when I sit down to working on the schedule I'll use whatever contexts are called for (laptop, work, phone, etc) and work OF out of Project mode with a dedicated perspective. Now this project may be more regimented than your work flow but I have start dates to keep future months invisible. The Project Filter is Active, the Availability Filter is Available. If there is an actionless project (Month) appearing with grey type in the action list it is because there are future Remaining actions for that active project (which is a good reminder that there will be more to do there). If I switch the Availability Filter to Remaining then I see what's on my plate to get done in grey type.

I do use Contexts for everything, but rely on default contexts as much as possible. If you don't, then just be sure to the preference to clean up the inbox without requiring a Context.

Could you use start and due dates to convey your yellow and red info?

There's nothing intrinsically wrong about OF working out of Project mode if that is how you are working in your head.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by makesense View Post
I'd better have another item in options or in filter.

Most of my actions are work related and at work I have several contexts to do any action and I have 6 means to communicate, delegate and monitor almost everything. I usually don't know what will be the most appropriate way to assign the context time- and resource-wise before it is almost time for action. I wished my actions would be like do homework or buy ice cream - but they are not.
If this is the case, then maybe in your particular circumstance you are taking too granular a view of what a context needs to be. Maybe those six means to communicate, etc. need to be abstracted into one meta context that captures the whole thing. Then if you apply it, it's more than just a placeholder. Instead, it captures the actual reality of what it is to deal with those tasks.

It's kind of the reverse of a person who does all of their work inside the computer. In that instance, having a context called "computer" isn't very helpful. Maybe you need a context for each piece of software you use, or as in my case, two contexts called computer on-line and computer off-line.

It seems to me that if it takes too much thought to assign a context, then probably more thought needs to be put into the context definitions (i.e., they are are either too granular or not granular enough).

I did some reading at Merlin Mann's 43 Folders where he talked about contexts and how to define them. I found that very helpful back in the early days of the Omnioutliner GTD solution that was the precursor to OF.

I mostly just moved those same contexts over to OF when I bought it.
 
Wandering afield from the original topic, but just in case it helps: the vast majority of my "communicate this" actions get assigned to the context of the person or organization I need to communicate to.

I do have a few method-of-communication contexts (like "phone" or "email"), but those are only used for a few one-off actions, where it's not going to be worth it to make a context for it.

Example: I've been summoned for jury duty, and I need to reschedule. I'm not going to make a context for Seattle city courts, so that action went in my Phone context.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by whpalmer4 View Post
Parents should be distinguishable from children by being styled in bold face, with the default style settings. See the Style preferences in the OmniFocus preferences to customize this. You have control over font, typeface, size, color, etc.
I tried to go into OF preferences/style and set different font....
I set "projects" to green and "actions" to black....
the green project font only appears in the side bar, not in the view...

how do you change font so that the parent is different than the child?
 
There are two places where styling of projects is handled, one for the sidebar and one for the main outline. Obviously, you'll need to change the one for the main outline if you want to affect the styling in the outline. However, there's a catch; the status-based styles override the other styles on the coloring, so the project is almost always going to get the Blocked styling, until all of the associated actions have been completed. I would suggest increasing the difference in font styling between projects and actions if you need more visual distinction between them.
 
 


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