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bug in status filter "due soon" when showing grouped tasks in project view Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Hi! I am having a problem in Omnifocus and trying to figure out if somehow I am doing something wrong or if this is a bug.

So I have a bunch of grouped this (hope this comes out looking ok, using spaces to indent)

Financial Planning {project}
Taxes {group}
-File 2008 extension (due 4/15/2008)
- file 2009 Q1 estimated taxes (due 3/14/2009)
- File 2008 final taxes (due 6/15/2009)
-file 2009 Q2 estimated taxes (due 12/20/2009)

Investments {group}
Estate Planning {group}

If I go into a context view and filter on "due soon" it shows the tasks that are past due and currently due but not the items that are not yet due. So far so good.

BUT, if I go into a project view, it does two weird things. (at least they seem weird to me)

First, if I use the status filter and filter on Due Soon, *No tasks appear*.

The reason for this is that apparently Omnifocus only looks at the due dates of the groups themselves (in this case my group called taxes). However I'm not really using that group to document "due dates" since these groups (like taxes) have a bunch of tasks with different due dates. Its not really relevant to me to give "taxes" a due date so much as the individual items in "taxes." If I don't give the group a due date, then none of its tasks appear in project views that filter by "due soon" (even if the tasks are due). And if I *do* give Taxes a due date of today or in the past then, *in project views* it will show *all* the tasks in the taxes group if the status filter is set to "due soon" (even those individual tasks that are not yet due). so this isnt what I want either.

(Now I know you might say that I should make "taxes" the project and have Financial planning be a folder but I dont want to do that for some very specific reasons I wont bore you with here...but that doesnt work for me in terms of how I use OF. )

One more symptom in a similar vein. if I group a project view by "due" then an entire project will appear in the "due" grouping if *any tasks* in that project are due soon. So if I have, say, a project with 100 tasks, and 1 of them is due but 99 are not , the project and all its tasks appears in the "due" grouping. (and the project does not appear at all in the "due tomorrow" or other groupings).

Its probably obvious but the behavior that I was expecting and am hoping to achieve is as follows:

1) if I have a project view where I have a hierarchical view of lots of tasks/groups, then if I use the filter "due soon" it shows me only those items that are due (and their parents as needed to show the hierarchy). It doesnt show me tasks that are not due. {optionally, I could live with the idea that if the item's parents are due then the children logically have to be due, but in my case I generally have no due dates specified for the parents which, it seems to me, should mean that the children would simply show as due or not due depending on their individual due dates.}

This is pretty much how the context view only shows the items that are due (when filtering by due soon). But the project view doesnt work this way, at least not as far as I can figure.

2) If I group items by due date in a project view, and I have projects with some "due" tasks and some "not due" tasks (and some not specified) then I'd expect that the same project would potentially be listed under several categories and the tasks within that project that apply to each respective grouping would appear. for example. Say the date today is December 8

Grouped by Due Date

Due Today (today is Dec 8)

Financial planning
- file taxes (due December 8)
- work out (due december 8)

Due Tomorrow
Financial plannng
- send paperwork to advisor (due December 9)

- buy new tennis racket (due december 9)

Not Specified
Financial Planning
- write a will (no due date)
- start a diet (no due date)

Can this stuff be done with OmniFocus today?

Last edited by howardtnyc; 2009-12-08 at 04:35 AM..
Howard, I'm really sorry for the confusion this caused.

Looking at the development database, #1 is due to a bug that the team hasn't had a chance to fix yet. It's pretty much exactly what you deduced - if the parent of a row isn't itself due soon, that filter will hide the row from view. I've added a note to this item in the database so the team will know that you hit this bug and need it fixed.

For item #2, OmniFocus isn't currently designed to do what you want in Planning view. Currently, the intent of that view is to help you plan your projects from start-to-finish; that's why we keep the whole project together, rather than break it up into chunks or pieces.

As you noted, if you want to see the project broken out into pieces, context view will give you an exploded view of the project, which you can group/sort.

One tip that may be helpful: if you double-click a project's icon in the sidebar, OmniFocus will open up a new window focused on that project. You can then switch that new window to context mode to slice and dice the project.
thx for the response! #1 is my main concern anyway so would be great to see that addressed in teh future. Meantime I am working aroudn by simply using styles to clearly differentiate due vs not due in the views.

(tho if I might say, it would be awesome to be able to set styles separately for different perspectives)
Originally Posted by Brian View Post
Looking at the development database, #1 is due to a bug that the team hasn't had a chance to fix yet. It's pretty much exactly what you deduced - if the parent of a row isn't itself due soon, that filter will hide the row from view.
Glad to hear that this is a bug and not designed this way. As it stands now, in order to have grouped actions appear in my "due soon" perspective, I have to enter the due date of the next action as the due date of the group. This is inaccurate and very impractical.

Your post was from December. What is the status on repairing this issue?

I absolutely love Omnifocus, by the way. I can tolerate this for now and hope that it will be addressed soon.
Palmer - the bug hasn't been marked "fixed" in the development database, but I know the team has been making some changes in this area of the app as part of their work on the upcoming 1.8 release.

Would you be willing to grab the latest Sneaky Peek release of the new version and see if you're still seeing the problem.

Just doing the following should be sufficient:
  1. Quit your "real" copy of OmniFocus
  2. Download the 1.8 Sneaky Peek. Mount the disk image, but don't install the app.
  3. Launch OmniFocus 1.8 from the disk image. Do your child tasks show up as due soon as expected?
  4. Quit the sneaky peek, un-mount the disk image, and drag the .dmg file to the trash.

You can then switch back to your currently-installed version of OmniFocus until we have the 1.8 builds completely coded up and tested. Thanks for the help!

Last edited by Brian; 2010-05-13 at 03:24 PM.. Reason: add first sentence of last paragraph.
If I'm understanding the issue correctly, the bug still seems to exist in OmniFocus 1.8 sneaky peek ( I'm in planning mode with the following view bar settings:

Project Filter: Active
Grouping: Ungrouped
Sorting: Unsorted
Availability Filter: Any Status
Status Filter: Due Soon
Estimated Time Filter: Any Duration

With these settings, I see a project/SAL row for each of my projects/SALs, regardless of whether they contain due actions or not. But the only actions displayed are due soon or over due, which account for only two of the projects. All the other projects/SALs appear empty with these settings.

I take it this is not the intended behavior?

Dennis, I think Palmer is asking about the other issue, where actions that are a) in an action group and b) due soon don't appear in the "Due" perspective unless their parent row(s) are due soon, as well.

I set up a test project that contained one parent row (no due date) and a child row (due tomorrow). The child row showed up when I switched to the Due perspective, but I didn't feel like one row was a sufficient test. :-)
Originally Posted by Brian View Post
Dennis, I think Palmer is asking about the other issue, where actions that are a) in an action group and b) due soon don't appear in the "Due" perspective unless their parent row(s) are due soon, as well.
Ah, ok, Brian. Yes, that seems to be working fine here too with 1.8 r132128.

I set up a project containing an action group without a due date. Inside that action group, I created six actions, four of which had a due date of tomorrow. Switching to the Due perspective, I see all four "due soon" actions properly displayed.

Sorry for the mix up.

Hi Brian & Toadling.

Yes, Brian is right. That is the issue I am concerned about. Funny that it is working for you, Toadling. For me it doesn't work. When I remove the due date from the action group, the actions no longer appear in the Due Soon view. Filters are:

Project Filter: Remaining
Grouping: Due
Sorting: Due
Availability Filter: Remaining
Status Filter: Due Soon
Estimated Time: Any Duration

This is running the app from the .dmg. By the way, I like the changes made to the filter lists. Well done.
I tried again, this time creating a brand new project, action group, and actions. Same result. The actions do not appear in Due perspective unless the group has a due date.

Dennis, do you have 1.8 installed or are you running from the .dmg? I don't suppose that could make the difference, could it?

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