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My workflow continues to improve with OmniFocus.

I'm in school full time, working full time, and living full time. I have 47 irons in the fire at all time (active projects) 20 projects coming down the pipe (pending projects) and 50 projects on the back burner (on hold projects).

Of the "active projects" there are a few that always come first. These are the tasks that I flag. I'm involved with where I am part of a close knit digital production team. These actions get first priority, because I know that other people are waiting on them to move forward with other parts of the project. (OmniPlan makes this incredibly easy to see). There are other things that are time sensitive (returning phone calls, etc) and other things that I just want to be first priority (exercise, family). Every day, I attack the flagged tasks first. On most days, I get through the flagged tasks in an hour or two, then open up the filter and move on to other tasks. This means I'm being really productive! Other days I only get through the flagged tasks. This means I'm keeping my head above water, which is good enough. It's a wonderful system. I love it.

However, with my production team tasks, sometimes I know that my team members won't actually be waiting on this asset until they finish a bunch of other stuff first, and that stuff will take them at least 3 weeks. So, for today, my action is not part of the projects critical path and doesn't need to be flagged. But if 16 days go by and I still haven't gotten to it, I know I need to make it a priority because they will be waiting on it soon.

I wish that there was an "this becomes automatically flagged" date in OmniFocus. I really want OmniFocus to automatically flag an action or project in 16 days, because I know that at that time I need to jump on it or I will miss my deadline and will be holding people up. I don't want to sleep the task with a future start date, because I would work on it today if I get to it and feel like it. I just want to be sure that if I happen not to get to it for 16 days, that it jumps up in priority.

Right now, every other day I scan for due dates and add flags to projects that are becoming tight on time. This takes me 15 minutes. I would love to eliminate this time suck and and fall back to just my weekly review.

It would help me to trust my system better and help me relax.

I sent this to the OmniFocus team... but I'm curious if i'm alone here.
 
If I'm not mistaken, you might be able to make this work by ensuring that when a project is set up, you make sure all the tasks are set x number of days in the future. That way, they (and I think the Project) are considered pending. Then set your main Perspective views with a filter set for "Remaining." That way, when a Task/Project hits that date, it becomes active, and boom it shows up in your various Perspective views.

Have I got this right, folks? I've only been on this a little over a week, so I'm certainly no expert yet.

--Sandy Santra

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnrover View Post
I wish that there was an "this becomes automatically flagged" date in OmniFocus. I really want OmniFocus to automatically flag an action or project in 16 days, because I know that at that time I need to jump on it or I will miss my deadline and will be holding people up. I don't want to sleep the task with a future start date, because I would work on it today if I get to it and feel like it. I just want to be sure that if I happen not to get to it for 16 days, that it jumps up in priority.
 
It would be possible to script the functionality. A script could find every item with a due date within a certain time frame and add a flag to it. Would that be sufficient?
__________________
Cheers,

Curt
 
And then attach it to an iCal alarm to run every day at a certain time before you start work.
 
It's late, so I may not be reading this correctly, but why not just flag the project, and then set a future start date on it?
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sprugman View Post
It's late, so I may not be reading this correctly, but why not just flag the project, and then set a future start date on it?
Because I want the project available... if I get to it.

If I'm slammed for the next 2 weeks and don't get to it, I want it to flag before I run out of time on it.
 
Would it help to make the project's next action due in 16 days, to ensure that you get started on the project by then?
 
No... because it isn't due. Due is only for things that are really really really due. However, once the "due" things are done, I dig into the "flagged" things. Thus, I want this to popup into my "flagged" perspectives at a certain time.
 
Install Rob Trew's excellent Where in OF script. Invoke the following search:

tasks where (completed is false) and (creation date ≤ today - 16d) and (flagged is false) and (it is not root task of its containing project) --sh cl=a st=incomplete

which will select all of the matching actions. Right-click and select Set Flag.

There, you've just flagged all incomplete actions created at least 16 days ago. The script will remember your search for future use, so you only have to type it in once, and you can install the script in the OF toolbar. Add a daily repeating action to remind yourself to run the script, if needed.

I suppose it wouldn't be too terribly difficult to cobble together a script that did this (so you could run it automatically from iCal), but automating such simple things isn't high on my priority list...

Last edited by whpalmer4; 2012-07-17 at 09:34 AM.. Reason: Update link
 
Rereading your posts, I'm having difficulty deciding whether you want this to happen to everything or just selected projects. The previous post gives the "everything" answer. If you just want it for selected projects, it will be less convenient, as you'll have to do something like scan the list of selected actions, cmd-clicking on the ones you don't want before you set the flag.
 
 


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