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I don't get any sound with Safari either while the sound works fine with DEVONagent on the same Mac.
 
I can't seem to get this Perspective to set up the way it is in the video. I have studied up on Perspectives, read a lot of posts on the web, but I can't create a Perspective that works for me. Maybe someone would be so kind as to provide some assistance.

Let me lay out what I am trying to accomplish, but first an aside. I set up some contexts but I don't find them that useful for what "normal" GTD tells you they are for - the tool, condition, place, person, or frame of mind needed to work on the task. They just don't apply to me. It might be better to use contexts as prioritization, as I think that is what the author of the video is doing.

Also, I understand it may not be possible to do EXACTLY what I want to do, but just a reasonable approximation thereof. Maybe someone has a perspective that is very close to this and it will work.

I want to construct a "Do Today" view that I will always have open on the right side of my monitor. It will be the list of things I work on throughout the day.

I want it to include anything that is "Due Soon" and "Flagged". So that seems pretty straightforward, there is a selection for that.

I want to sort things by prioritization.

First would come things that are repeating tasks (I have daily, weekly, biweekly, and monthly). These are things to get out of the way so I can get on with real work. So I would give these some sort of Context that would appear at the top of the Perspective (I would sort by context).

Second, flagged items. They could be mixed in the above. That would be fine.

Third, anything with a due date, sorted by prioritization (which I think I would set up in the context).

Any suggestions would be most appreciated.
 
Don't bother. You've got distinct clumps of items. Make a perspective suited to each one, and do them in order. Assign a keyboard shortcut to each of the perspectives, or a toolbar button, and you can easily flip between them.
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryan View Post
I can't seem to get this Perspective to set up the way it is in the video. I have studied up on Perspectives, read a lot of posts on the web, but I can't create a Perspective that works for me. Maybe someone would be so kind as to provide some assistance.

I want to construct a "Do Today" view that I will always have open on the right side of my monitor. It will be the list of things I work on throughout the day.

I want it to include anything that is "Due Soon" and "Flagged". So that seems pretty straightforward, there is a selection for that.

I want to sort things by prioritization.

First would come things that are repeating tasks (I have daily, weekly, biweekly, and monthly). These are things to get out of the way so I can get on with real work. So I would give these some sort of Context that would appear at the top of the Perspective (I would sort by context).

Second, flagged items. They could be mixed in the above. That would be fine.

Third, anything with a due date, sorted by prioritization (which I think I would set up in the context).

Any suggestions would be most appreciated.
It seems like you basically have it. Organize your contexts according to prioritization, with your context for your repeating items at the top. Group by context, order by due date, set the view to due or flagged. Doesn't that get what you're setting out to do?
 
You were right, writing it out helped. I just started from scratch and was able to construct the Perspective that I want. Overtime I may refine it or my process, as it seems there are possibly too many things on it.

Here are some of the mental obstacles that I had to overcome.

1. It took me awhile to figure out that the order the Contexts are in in the Context Perspective is the order they are in when you sort by Context in another Perspective. This was nice because it meant I didn't have to put in bogus letters to get them to sort the way I wanted.

2. It really is not possible to construct one perspective to run EVERYTHING by. I like having this main one but then I have several others that are useful at other times. The "Today" perspective [that is what I call it] gives me an overview of things to do over the next 24 hours. When I need to drill into a project I open a different perspective.

3. I have been wondering why OmniFocus is so difficult to "get". This is not a criticism really, but an observation. I have tried about a dozen GTD programs and the general pattern is that they are really easy to START using but once you want to do something a little bit more complex or sophisticated (repeating tasks, linking to a trusted reference database) etc. then you find you are stuck. OmniFocus is just the opposite. You are presented with lots of options, terms that might not have any meaning to you (if you are not steeped in GTD, and maybe even if you are). Putting in one project with a few tasks is easy, adding a context or two is easy, and so off you go entering 100 things. But then things get lost; how do I use perspectives, they are powerful but what do they do, what's a review, etc. I imagine many people quit the program after a week.

This is not necessarily an argument for two "modes" but perhaps for a smoother climb from novice to advanced features. IMHO, the iPad version is easier to use - I love the +1 Day +1 Week etc. buttons in the date tab - and probably lessons learned form developing for the iPad will blow back into the Mac client and make it even better.

Finally, it seems to me that the conceptual difficulty with Perspectives is that how you use them or how you *can* use them depends on how you have set up your data - your projects, your contexts, whether you use start dates, if due dates are *hard* dates, what flags mean to you (or if you even use them). That why I wasn't able just to re-use some Perspectives that I found on the web. I would find one that seemed good but it had 3 uses for the above (flags, contexts) that were different than the *next* Perspective I found.

So that led me to work backwards from the few Perspectives I wanted to how I would have to set up projects, contexts, flags, etc. Now this is somewhat dangerous I think in that you have to be careful not to get too far off the GTD ranch, but I don't think I have.

So after all that, here is what I did.

1. Contexts became priorities for me. My contexts are

InBox
Periodic
High
Free
Medium
Low
Waiting For
Writing
Reading
Someday/Maybe
Not Applicable

InBox is at the top so I can see what is in my inbox and either do it (2 minute rule) or process it.

Periodic maps also to a Project called "Routine Maintenance" [I cribbed this from someone else on the forum or someone on the next] which has 6 Projects within it (Daily, Weekly, Bi-weekly, Month, Quarterly, Yearly). This is where I put routine stuff I need to do on a periodic basis.

The idea is that stuff I have to do everyday will appear at the top of the "Today" view and I can get it out of the way. Some actions can't happen until a certain time, so they have a start time. I just keep an eye on this stuff at the top and get it down when needed.

High
Free
Medium
Low

High are things that I really have to work on. A due date in a project that is high is a hard date and I MUST get it done. If there is something that I need to work on in June, it will be in the Low context but when I get close enough I switch the context and it will appear higher in the list.

Free are things that I need to get done sometime but have no real start or end date. Free to do them when I want. Arguable whether to put them below Low or between High or Medium. I like them there because if I knock off 3 tasks in the High context I can cherry pick something in Free that I can get done and it will act kind of like a break.

Waiting For
Writing
Reading

These are all arguable. I have 2 articles that are actually in High cause they are due soon. Reading is stuff I am reading for my career. I list each chapter and try to make progress every week (check during the review). Waiting for is going to be for things that I can wait a week for - going to pick those up in a review.

Someday/Maybe
Not Applicable

Someday/Maybe I think is self-explanatory. Again, I cribbed the list that someone else had, so I have 8-10 single action lists with some things in them that make sense. For example I have a Read/Watch/Listen SAL with books or movies, or stuff like that in there. All the SAL are on hold.

Not Applicable is the context that I am most unsure of. Probably don't need it. The reason I wanted it as a catch all is for Projects that don't fit anywhere else and I DON'T want them appearing in the list. For example in my Routine Maintenance folder I have those "Daily", "Weekly" and so on Projects that I don't want to appear in my Today Perspective if one of the actions does. But I must admit I am not sure if they will or not.

ANY feedback would be greatly appreciated. I am sure there are some pretty stupid things in here, and room for improvement.

Thanks to everyone in this thread and to others who wrote great web posts!

Bryan
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Thank you so much for posting the script to transfer everything!
 
A minor adjustment I've made to my Today view that I find really useful.

As an ex-Things person, making sure you have a good Today list is important. With a minor change I feel that the Today list I have now is actually better than the Things today list.

The only change I've made to instructions in the initial post is just to untick the "Expansion" option for my Today perspective.

Then, I create my Today list as usual by reviewing tasks. However, when I come to my Today page I typically close Contexts I am not working on, and just leave the one Context I am involved in. So I have a Today list where *all* I see is my Phonecalls for example or Emails which keeps you really focussed on the tasks at hand.

Unchecking the Expansion options means if you go elsewhere in OF and come back, your Today view, it retains the same expanded/contracted Context mode, the same sub-focus so to speak.

It means as you work in your Today view you only ever focus on a small number of items (within a context which is what you should be doing in GTD), but you always have visibility of all the unexpanded Contexts you know you need to work through during the day.

Very minor change, but its made the Today view work much better for me.

Steve.
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Thanks so much for this stevenjohn! Awesome work. I've got a couple points to add.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stevenjohn View Post
2. Use the script here to import your data into OF. First run it as it is, the change the line:

from: repeat with aToDo in to dos of list "Scheduled"

to: repeat with aToDo in to dos of list "Next"
I would add that you can also use this to move your Someday todos over by changing it
to: repeat with aToDo in to dos of list "Someday".
Also, the current Applescript originally has Next, not Scheduled. So it should read:
First run it as it is, the change the line:

from: repeat with aToDo in to dos of list "Next"

to: repeat with aToDo in to dos of list "Scheduled"
That means the below quote should read
Move your Repeating tasks over manually.
instead of Scheduled tasks

Quote:
Originally Posted by stevenjohn View Post
... I left all my projects and areas imported from Things at the bottom and started building my Folder/SAL/Projects/Tasks at the top - as I brought items up into my new system I then went and deleted the equivalent in Things so I could double check everything was brought across

Move your Scheduled tasks over manually.
 
Hi all, I chose my wife easier than deciding between OmniFocus and Things and that's the truth. It's so bad that I've been running both in parallel for months. That means every new task, every due date change, every everything gets done twice, oh joy. :)

The reason is this... I think. I much prefer the way Things works and looks but love the power of OF. What I think I would like it to have OF setup to mimic Things as much as possible. I don't need 12 contexts and 12 projects. In Things I have a couple of projects and several Areas but the same data in OF has many contexts and many projects. One reason is Perspectives on iPad/iPhone only work with contexts, bummer. Could I use Contexts like Areas maybe? Any other ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated, I need to choose one once and for all!

Matt in Bermuda
 
Hi,
This probably doesn't answer your question, but what I DO badly MISS in Things are:
- impossibility of creating sub-tasks (no indenting)
- no sync at all

Would it be "only" for those 2 reasons, OmniFocus is so far the best and UNIQUE (sorry) choice.
 
 


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