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Drag-and-drop capability planned? Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Hi all,

I recently started using OF on my iPad and I was wondering if there are any plans to implement "drag-and-drop" features. For example, drag an inbox item into the Projects label to turn it into a project or drag a task/project into the Flagged label to flag it.

I feel that having drag-and-drop capability would make OF much more intuitive and useful on the iPad.

That's a pretty interesting idea...but looking at the action editor, it seems like most of the things you can do are not as suitable for a drag-and-drop implementation as the ones you mentioned. For example, setting the context or project seems like an obvious candidate, but if your list of projects or contexts doesn't all fit on the screen at once, do you have to scroll it into view first (never mind that such a list isn't showing when you are looking at items in the Inbox)? If you have more than a few dozen projects, scrolling through the list can take a while, and if you've got things nested in folders, you have to stop and drill into them. On the other hand, if you use the smart matching for project and context names, you can set the value to nearly any project or context name with just a few key taps. Try using just the first letter of each word in the title, for example. With a little practice, I think you'll find this approach is faster.

Also, from a UI design point of view, I think it is easier to learn the application if everything works in the same way instead of "well, to set the project, you tap a button in the action editor, but to make it into a project, you drag it over here." If you could come up with a drag and drop scheme that handled most of the operations done with the action editor now, that would be more compelling. Often, one isn't changing just one thing about an action or project, and it would be strange to have to do some of the manipulations by dragging and dropping and some via the action editor.

There's definitely room for improvement in the drag and drop editing of actions in a given project right now, which is where it seems to be the most natural fit. Regardless of whether you agree with me about the utility of drag and drop in the UI, questions and suggestions for Omni are best sent directly to them with the Contact Omni menu item. That gets them into their tracking system, whereas a post to the forum is not guaranteed to do so.
Thanks whpalmer4

I'm afraid I'm unclear on the "smart matching" tool, would you mind elaborating on that? It sounds like more or less the tool I'm looking for.
The smart matching code is one of my favorite features in OmniFocus!

If you bring up the action editor, tap the Info button, you get the choosers for context and project. Tap on one, and you'll get a list of all of the projects or contexts in your database, with a search field at the top. If you type a letter into the search field, the list will be narrowed down to only the ones containing that letter. Type another letter, and the list narrows down to only the ones containing both letters, in that order, but not necessarily adjacent. Type a third letter, and as long as you aren't picking out common letters that appear in all of your project or context names, your target is probably in view by now. It also underlines the matching letters in each listed item, so you can get an idea of whether a different set of letters would branch out more efficiently. I find that just using the first letter of most of the words usually gets me there right away. I've got a folder called OmniGroup with a handful of projects, such as Omni Group Forums, Omni bug reporting, etc. Typing "ogf" gets me the forum project, "oobr" gets the bug reporting project. Once my target is in view I just tap on it and I'm done.

Note that the "spotlight" search (magnifying glass at upper right) does not do this sort of matching. It would probably be prohibitively slow with the much larger number of strings to search (every action name in addition to every project name). The first character takes about 10 seconds for a response when searching through 8000 choices in my database, though subsequent ones are very rapid as the list quickly shrinks. It would be even more painful if it did the smart matching, I'm sure, and possibly only slightly more useful.
Ahhh, thanks for clarifying that!

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