OmniFocus is an incredible task management platform for Mac®, iPad®, and iPhone®.
Last updated December 4, 2015. Please visit the official site for the most up-to-date information.
Productivity isn't just getting stuff done. It's getting the right things done at the right time—accomplishing the stuff that actually needs to be done right now. As such, you likely don't need a to-do list, with yet another list of things you need to do and groceries you need to buy.
Instead, you need a tool that organizes your tasks and shows what you need to be doing most right now. OmniFocus, with its GTD-inspired workflow and calendar integration, is an app that can do just that. Add in your tasks and organize them, and you'll always know what needs to be done next.
It starts with your tasks (called Actions in OmniFocus), as you could use OmniFocus as just a traditional task manager and get by just fine. Each task can include just a task name, or you can also add notes (including links to files or websites) along with start and due dates. The start date is when you should start working on a task, while the due date is when the task should be finished. Now, open the Forecast tab in OmniFocus, and you'll see the tasks you should be starting and finishing, along with events from your calendar that are coming up.
That—along with options to import tasks from Siri and send tasks to your inbox via email or Zapier—are enough to get started. Then, when you're ready to get things more organized, it's time to explore contexts and projects. Contexts are simple: they're essentially a tag you'll add to tasks to say where or when they need completed. You could make a store context that you'll add to anything you need to purchase, in any project, or a writing context for any text-related tasks. Feel free to be creative here—contexts are your chance to categorize tasks beyond their projects, to link similar tasks.
Projects, then, are your typical task lists of things that need completed to finish a larger goal. You could have a house renovation project, say, or a website redesign project. Or, you could have an ongoing project such as "Work" where all of your random tasks from work go. Unlike a normal list, though, OmniFocus lets you make projects where tasks are sequential (where one task must be completed before the next can be done) or parallel (where tasks can be completed in any order). Or you could list a project as "Single Action" where tasks are only loosely related, such as in the example Work project. Then, you can mark projects as active, on hold, or completed, and can group tasks into Action Groups for simple sub-projects.
OmniFocus' projects are powerful—they can have their own notes and due dates, and can even be set to repeat on a schedule. They're essentially super tasks—a task with multiple tasks under them—and give you the tools you need to get everything done. Then, you can rely on the Forecast view to show exactly what needs done next, based on the settings you've added to each project. Or, you can make your own perspectives to view tasks in any order you want.
There's one final place OmniFocus will help you keep from losing tasks: the Review perspective. There, once every so often, you'll be reminded to look through each project and make sure nothing fell through the cracks. It's the perfect place to notice tasks you forgot to add a due date to—or the things you keep putting off with OmniFocus' handy +1 day button on due dates to push tasks off till later. There's even AppleScript integration the Pro Mac version to automatically organize tasks, keyboard shortcuts to help you quickly add and organize tasks, and interface tweaks to hide all distractions and help you focus just on the tasks at hand.
OmniFocus is an advanced, powerful task manager that'll help you keep your life organized. More than just a simple todo list app, OmniFocus will help you know what you need to do, right when it most needs done.
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