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I'm probably misunderstanding something here. My impression of the Single-Action List is that it is a list of unrelated items.

Why is it then that when I add items to a single-action list, and assign start dates, that all the items after the first one (i.e. the one with the earliest start date) appear as "blocked" and are not considered "due soon"?

Please help me! Thank you.
 
You're right that a single-action list is a list of unrelated items. Setting a start date on one of them should not affect the others.

A sequential project should work as you describe. What icon is to the left of the project name? A single-action list should have a little file box or shoebox icon to the left of the name, and the Project Inspector should show the same icon. Available actions in the single-action list should be colored blue, unless you have changed the default settings.

If you've got the shoebox icon, the Project Inspector says it's a single-action list, and you get the behavior you describe, then you've found a bug. Use "Send Feedback..." to report it to Omni.
 
I'm not so sure there's a bug here, necessarily. You didn't mention anything about due dates, only start dates. If there's no due date, the "due soon" filter shouldn't ever show the action in question.

Furthermore, what are the start dates we're talking about -- are they in the past, or the future? A "due soon" item won't show up in the menu bar/dock/sidebar counts or have the "due soon" styling if the start date for the item hasn't been reached yet, even if the due date for the item is within the "due soon" period set in Preferences. It will be caught by the "due soon" filter, however.
 
I do have due dates, in the future, of course. But the due dates don't make any difference. It's the presence of a start date that causes my problem.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LazarusLong View Post
I do have due dates, in the future, of course. But the due dates don't make any difference. It's the presence of a start date that causes my problem.
Can you post a screenshot?

If the start dates of the items in question haven't arrived yet, the items will be styled as blocked, whether in a single action list or a sequential or parallel project.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by whpalmer4 View Post
Can you post a screenshot?

If the start dates of the items in question haven't arrived yet, the items will be styled as blocked, whether in a single action list or a sequential or parallel project.
Sure, it's below. Thanks!
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Assuming it's not August 2nd where you are, your 2nd and 3rd item in that screen shot both have a start date of 8/2 (in the future) so that's why they show as unavailable. As whpalmer4 has mentioned, actions with future start dates won't show as due soon even if the due date is in the due soon range. If you added a 4th action with a past or current start date, it should not show as blocked.

Last edited by DerekM; 2008-08-01 at 11:52 AM..
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LazarusLong View Post
Sure, it's below. Thanks!
Thanks! That's helpful.

I think your initial question misled us a bit. It's not the presence of the first item that results in the other two being marked as not due soon. Based on my quick test, I think you'll find that the other two will remain gray even if you delete the first one. It's the presence of a start date in the future.

That's how actions work in regular projects too. When you set a start date, you are telling OmniFocus, in effect, "I don't want to be bothered by this until the start date arrives." OmniFocus is following your instructions. What is the point in telling you that something is due soon, by changing its color and adding a number to the badges, if you have decided that it can't be started until the future?

I like how this works, because I think that the due soon list should include only items I can actually work on now. But I don't like getting blindsided by things that have a small window between start and due date. So I have created my own "Due Actions by Due Date" perspective, which shows all remaining actions sorted and grouped by due date. That way, I can see blocked actions that are due soon, but only during my daily review.
 
I constructed a nice set of examples showing the interaction between start/due dates and the 3 different container types, had a bit of trouble getting them uploaded, and then discovered the question had been extensively covered in the meantime! Sometimes, it's faster to type 1,000 words than to take a good picture :-)
 
 


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