Tag - Tasks
This does not come up every day: I've been using OmniFocus for at least five years now, and I've never done this before -- but I've wanted to. I've been thwarted by what seems to be a simple process, but has just a couple of little catches that meant it never seemed to work for me. If that's you too, this is how to do it. If that isn't you, if you find OmniFocus child actions or subprojects as obvious as they are intended to be, you could've let me know. On the other hand, if you don't know OmniFocus at all, let me tell you at evangelical length.
In the two years or so since we last looked at this app, it's been updated 17 times. That somehow seems fitting for software designed to keep you productive. Pocket Informant 4.91 is for busy people juggling busy lives, and especially ones that revolve around both tasks and appointments.
We're a funny bunch, really. All of us. We're high-functioning human beings, yet if an app tells us we're lagging behind some goal, we do something about it. Ask any Apple Watch owner if they aren't at least more conscious of their daily exercise now. Goalify 2.0 wants to press on this Pavlovian reaction tendency of us, and use its power for good. It wants you to achieve things, and it wants to help you.
We are unabashed fans of the Omni Group, and in particular of two of its four apps: OmniFocus and OmniOutliner. These are the company's To Do and outlining apps, and we use them across OS X and iOS. Not everyone on MacNN uses them, but those who do seem to either be actually using them constantly, or just talking about them all the time. They are very strong apps in their fields, and now we've got that out of the way, we want to point out a problem with them. This being Pointers, we'd also like to fix the problem.
We've argued before that the To Do app Things has the best name for this kind of app, but we had forgotten Remember the Milk, which is unquestionably the cleverest title in the genre. The reason we'd forgotten it, though, is that RTM is a very long-standing service that hasn't particularly kept up with the times -- until now. Now, with a revamped online service and a new Remember the Milk 4.0.41 universal iOS app, it's back.
Due 2.2 is not the reminders app to beat all reminders apps: it's the one to join them. Whatever To Do app you're currently using, Due can work alongside it in your life -- and we're still surprised at that. Uncomfortably surprised: it cannot be a good idea to have some of your tasks in one app and the rest in another, it just cannot. Yet it is. We've been using Due alongside Wunderlist and OmniFocus, and in both cases it's proved just too handy to leave.
The Wunderkinder company, makers of Wunderlist 3.4.0, was bought by Microsoft back in June 2015 and if you thought that meant the app would get subsumed into Outlook, well, you weren't alone there. However, it's had four updates since then and if it all stopped tomorrow, it'd still be a superb To Do app.
The MacNN staff who don't happen to use this To Do manager are secretly convinced that the rest of us would do a new Hands On if the Omni Group even so much as changed the color of the app. We resent that accusation, and wish to point out that it is patently not true -- for they changed that back in 2.6, and we didn't say a single word. Now the various incremental updates since our last review have brought us to OmniFocus 2.8 for iOS. It's got more than a color change, it's got a native Apple Watch app, and now the iOS version has certain features that are better than the OS X release.
Not everyone has OmniFocus, but maybe everyone should. True, it's a bit of a bionic To Do manager, and overkill for many people; plus, more than perhaps most software, this kind of thing is very individual. You can hate OmniFocus and adore Todoist, and we wouldn't think you're a bad person. Only, if you are an OmniFocus fan, or you're just starting out with it, you are the sort of person who needs its powerful features, yet may not be getting to grips with them. You will. Let's just take a jump forward now, and get you using what we'd call its five best but least-known excellent features.
It's a big job, Getting Things Done. David Allen's clever system takes effort but it actually works and despite all the work you have to put into it, you do tend find yourself feeling lighter than you used to. Fewer things are pressing on your mind because you're handling them all. If the hardest part of GTD is keeping at it then we'd say the second hardest part is understanding Allen's corporate language. Hopefully we've dealt with translating that all week – including yesterday's coverage of the single most vital part of GTD – but now we want you to go do things. We want you to do them with our recommendations of specific Apple technologies and software.