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I find myself somewhat confused between iCal and Omnifocus when it comes to the 'tickler' part of the GTD methodology. I much prefer to enter "tickler" items in iCal, as that allows me to 'look over the day's fixed events etc.' at the beginning of the day, as well as for the reminder features. But then, there are projects where the next action is really just to 'wait for iCal to tickle'...

Is there a simple simple way we could have integration with iCal events as well? I'm not thinking automatic Sync, as there are plenty of appointments on my iCal that I don't want to show up in Omnifocus. However, whatever the review functionality will be (I know it is yet to be revealed), I imagine it would be great to also review the day's or week's or month's events and decide if any of them should also trigger any actions.
 
I've never implemented the GTD tickler the way it is described in the book (with 43 physical folders), but I have been employing the idea for tasks only when I was using kGTD. The way I did that was by using start dates. If I wanted to be tickled about a task in the future, I would assign a start date for it. For something that I wanted to be reminded of in a few months, I would set the start date for the first of the month. In kGTD, it was easy to turn a task into a subproject (ie "Transfer investment accounts to eTrade"), and in OmniFocus, it seems fairly straightforward as well.

As for events, I created a context called "Remind". I would prefer to use iCal for events that were for sure taking place, and my Remind context to list events that I might be interested in attending. Entries in this list (which are not "tasks" per se) would be given appropriate start dates (ie few days to a few weeks beforehand). In retrospect, I'm certain that calling it something more descriptive than Remind might be better, but I digress.

As an aside, I'm uncertain whether my start date workflow will work right now since I'm having difficulty with dates being recognized properly in OmniFocus. Not sure if it has to do with the fact that I'm in Canada (I remember there being a Canada-related date issue earlier). I Sent Feedback about this to Omni, and I'm certain that the ninjas are tackling this as you read this, but if anyone else is having any date issues, perhaps we should start another thread.
 
The standard GTD way to handle this is:
- calendar for things that must be done on a specific day/time (call Mr. Li in Hong Kong Tuesday at 7:00 am PDT)
- task/project list for things that you would like to do by a certain day, but aren't glued to it (prepare question list for Mr. Li phone call Tues. morning; set alarm early Monday night)

And you'd be looking at both the calendar and the Project/task list (which I'll call OmniFocus) frequently.

I admit, I don't work quite that way, either -- but as housewife/mom, I don't have a standard job. [No office/home difference, for one.] I also don't look at iCal nearly as often as I should.

My solution is to have 5 projects, one for each day of the week. [I don't plan my weekends.] I'll list my cleaning tasks (which will be repeating) and any special things I want to get done during the week. I can also see myself putting appointment reminders on the days, too. But this isn't how OF is supposed to be used.

--Liz
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LizPf
The standard GTD way to handle this is:
- calendar for things that must be done on a specific day/time (call Mr. Li in Hong Kong Tuesday at 7:00 am PDT)
- task/project list for things that you would like to do by a certain day, but aren't glued to it (prepare question list for Mr. Li phone call Tues. morning; set alarm early Monday night)
I would add:
- tickler file (the canonical 43 folders, or whatever works for you) for things that don't belong in your inbox now but will belong there at a specific date in the future.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LizPf
But this isn't how OF is supposed to be used.
I don't think it matters how you use it, as long as you find it useful! The point is having a simple system that does what you need it to do, not following the Gospel According to The David.
 
I use backpackit.com for reminders. This is my "tickler", I guess. It seems to work for me.

Last edited by jbrains; 2007-11-17 at 05:20 AM..
 
So Omni how about making Inbox hierarchical with the 43 folders built in, but treating TODAY as the 44th?
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by awolfe_ii View Post
So Omni how about making Inbox hierarchical with the 43 folders built in, but treating TODAY as the 44th?
If you switch to Context Mode and group your actions by start date, you'll have something that's functionally fairly similar to the traditional arrangement of 43 folders. (But it won't have all those empty folders for days that don't have anything in them.)
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by awolfe_ii View Post
So Omni how about making Inbox hierarchical with the 43 folders built in, but treating TODAY as the 44th?
I disagree, the Inbox is not ticklers. The inbox is inbox-zero: stuff that goes there should be cleaned out on a daily basis. In the traditional 43 folders, the day (or months) tickler file was dumped into the inbox for processing, but it isn't part of the inbox. I agree with Ken. In OF, Context mode is the place to view Tickler items.

I have a Ticklers perspective with these settings:

Remaining Contexts, Grouped by Start, Sorted by Due, Show Actions with status Remaining, Any Duration, Any Flag Status.

I have the groups collapsed for everything but Started yesterday, Start today, and Start tomorrow. If I want to "tickle myself", I add an action to OF with a start date corresponding to the tickle date. In my daily review I just check my Ticklers perspective instead of checking a paper file.
__________________
Cheers,

Curt
 
Great tip, Curt, I'll use it.

I won't argue my provocative point! (But I may put it as a tickler for February...)
 
Thanks for the start date tip!

The key is that, with a Tickler, you can optionally postpone fleshing out the Next Actions. The idea is that you can place physical objects into the files as well as projects/Next Actions that only need to start on that day. I'll start using the Start Date in OF, but will still keep my physical folders for the physical reminders.
 
 


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