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I'm new at OmniFocus and I'm trying to figure out how to stay in Context Mode but have the parent-child relationships of a project stay together. I've tried various methods and nothing seems to sort properly. I usually have several concurrent projects with nearly identical steps and need the parent-child relationship to remain intact to understand which actions still remain undone. I suppose a workaround would be to come up with elaborate names for my nearly identical-sounding child-actions, but this seems tedious.
Any suggestions?
The first thing I'd probably suggest is making sure the "Show full hierarchy" setting was enabled in the General tab of OmniFocus' preferences.

If that doesn't help enough, you may want to experiment with using the view menu to change from the default "group by context" setting to "group by project" instead...
I've been bringing up issues related this scenario for a couple of years now. It's also an issue in calendar alerts and growl alerts, where the alert doesn't include the project name or other parent items.

So if you have 5-10 projects with an action like "send invoice," it's impossible to know which project the alert relates to without clicking through from the alert to the project.

I use Curt Clifton's populate templates applescript a lot. I have templates for standard projects I start a lot. That's been great, because there are a lot of steps I need to take each time I start a project for someone (e.g., engagement paperwork, etc.). Populating all that stuff automatically at the start is a real time saver and helps to insure that I don't miss any of those steps. It's all very Checklist Manifesto.

Recently, I did what you suggested. I added variables into the template so that the standardized actions now include the name of client and the project.

So instead of it reading "Send invoice." Now it reads "Send Invoice: XYZ, Corp--Project Name." This is certainly better than nothing, but it's a less than graceful solution, since I really don't need that information much of the time, when I'm inside OF on the Ipod or the Mac, it kind of clutters up the view in planning mode and elsewhere. It would be better if OF just inserted that info automatically in the situation where users typically need it. It needn't be mandatory for everyone. It could be a preference (include project name in calendar and growl alerts).

Honestly, I'm really surprised that this situation has not been better addressed in OF by now. Maybe it's more difficult to implement than I imagine. Seems like many people would have this scenario of multiple concurrent projects with very simple action items. But somehow it hasn't been a priority to address it. So maybe we really are a part of a small minority with issue.

Last edited by kingsinger; 2010-11-20 at 03:45 PM..
Thanks Brian, I've already tried those avenues and they don't work. Parent/Child relationships are scattered about everywhere.
Thanks, Kingsinger. You get my problem exactly. I'll take a look at the templates, although that may not work for my particular situation.

There are really two issues. Identifying simple repetitive actions as you mention and maintaining parent/child relationships in Context Mode. Without it, all items under a given project are scattered. I guess another workaround would be to make every parent item a project, but I think that would just create another problem. Hopefully someone will fix this.

Last edited by cmelville; 2010-11-21 at 02:37 AM..
Originally Posted by Brian View Post
The first thing I'd probably suggest is making sure the "Show full hierarchy" setting was enabled in the General tab of OmniFocus' preferences.
This will only show folder->project hierarchy. It doesn't show action group hierarchy. If it did, it would be fantastic!

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