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I thought it might be enlightening (for me) to start a thread for each of the GTD stages to see how people deal with each using OmniFocus. This first one is about the collection stage. I'd like to see how you do it and the ups and downs and any advice. I hope you find this interesting too.

Here's what I do...

When I have a new thought, I immediately place it in my OmniFocus inbox either by the desktop client or iPod touch client. The iPod touch client for me is the killer addition since I always have it with me. Otherwise, I would have to rely on paper to collect.

If I encounter an email that I can't deal with right now, I place it in my OmniFocus inbox by using Clip-O-Tron 3000. I have found that email attachments can really make your OmniFocus document get large and your sync time will suffer. I see that Omni has addressed this problem with an attachment view. Nice! I haven't tried it yet though. Sometimes when I'm on my iPod touch, I may copy text from a message and paste it into the notes of a new inbox action and that works too (although I don't get the link back to the message).

If I run across something on the internet or some other document that I'll need later, I'll select the text that I need on the page and send it to my OmniFocus inbox.

I like to not worry about naming the action correctly or effectively when I make a new inbox action. If I use the clipping service, I'll usually just accept whatever gets placed in the title. I just type whatever flies out of my head at that moment and add it. When I go to process later, I'll remember what it was about.

I'm lucky for now since I don't have to deal with very much physical paper. I'm curious to see if there are others that do and how they deal with it.
Originally Posted by sriggs View Post
When I have a new thought, I immediately place it in my OmniFocus inbox either by the desktop client or iPod touch client...

If I encounter an email that I can't deal with right now, I place it in my OmniFocus inbox by using Clip-O-Tron 3000.
I use the same system that you do, except I also capture using a space pen and extra small moleskine notebook, as well as Jott.
Right now, I use paper to collect items when not at my desk. This is problematic for me, though, because right now I'm using the OF paper form that a member here on the forum developed and it's letter-size, which is cumbersome because I need something small enough to carry around in my backpack-purse. I've tried spiral notebooks and notepads but it's just not fitting into my lifestyle. Waiting for the pocket-size version the form.

Also waiting for the next revision of iPod Touch which will hopefully be announced soon. And of course, I'd be using the OF phone version on it. That would be a lot more convenient for me than scribbling down on a piece of paper and looking for it.

And yeah, waiting for Thunderbird to fully use the Service menu so finally I can send email items to OF . . .
lolajl, I remember reading somewhere that people were using index cards or blank business cards to do capture. They would place each item on its own card. That sounded interesting to me since it would be easy to reorder the items. I suppose lists would consist of rubber banded cards. Pull the one on the top and go for it. I think to try going paper every now and then but I haven't yet for whatever reason.
I've tried using index cards but I find it too small to use.
I have three collection buckets.

1. At my laptop I hit my speedkey to bring up the OF quick entry and send it straight to my inbox. I have my preferences set so that it stays in the inbox unless I have entered a project and context. If the project & context exist I'll enter them up front, otherwise I'll go back later and set up the new project.

2. On the road I use evernote on my iphone to either write a reminder note or if I'm driving record a voice memo. When I get back to the office I bring up EN on the laptop and sitting in the inbox are my reminders for transfer to OF.

3. I also use my email client to keep track of most email based actions. I just don't see the point of sending emails to OF and back. I have folders set up for "waiting for" and "action". You need the discipline to practice inbox zero and also do under 2 min email actions as they show up but otherwise I prefer to have email as email.

I will send things I need to read or want to review at some point in the future to OF via "send to inbox" script but anything that involves sending another email stays in email.

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