Turning Your Idea Into a Reality →

Who is this for? Those looking for practical and first-hand advice on turning a big idea into a reality.

Jean MacDonald revisits the Mikes on Mics podcast to talk about App Camp for Girls.

A year ago Jean joined us to discuss the community she built for Smile; the makers of PDF Pen and TextExpander. At the end of that episode, Jean shared her plans to develop a program that would help young girls consider and try app development.

A year later, Jean has raised over $75,000 and has already held her first class. We examine how she brought her vision to life.

Be sure to stay tuned at the end of the episode for special bonus interviews where David Sparks, Brooks Duncan, Mike Rohde and Marc & Angel share tactics for ensuring that their own ideas become a reality.

Essential OmniFocus Scripts and Workflows

Who is this for? New or beginner OmniFocus users looking for best practices and basic tricks.

Note: This post is a running list and will continue to be updated with new options. There will also be another list for geeky workflows coming soon.

OmniFocus Walkthrough Videos — MacSparky

This video series from David Sparks is the single best place to get started with OmniFocus, even though it clocks in at four hours (spread across three videos) it is well worth the time and gets you started on the right the right foot. If you don’t think it’s worth the time to watch these videos, you probably don’t need OmniFocus.

OopsieFocus Script — Shawn Blanc

A task manager is only as good as it is reliable. If you close OmniFocus, it won’t react when you use the quick entry or clipper. Thankfully Shawn Blanc solved this problem with a single script. Once installed, OmniFocus will respond every single time you call it.

Templates.scpt — pxldot

There have been a few ways to create templates for frequently created projects in OmniFocus, but this is by far the best and most robust option.

How to get all of your crap into OmniFocus

This post and screencast from yours truly will give you an overview of just how easy it is to create tasks from text, websites, files, emails and Evernote notes.

My OmniFocus Setup

An in-depth look at how I use OmniFocus to get things done. There are several ways to make the most out of this application, this is mine.

OmniFocus Premium Posts by Asian Efficiency

This premium product is a great option for those looking for hand holding while getting started with OmniFocus. It’s ideal for those who want a better way to manage their tasks and projects, but perhaps aren’t entirely married to David Allen’s GTD.

Using OmniFocus by Kourosh Dini

Those who prefer the GTD framework would be better served by Kourosh Dini’s Creating Flow with OmniFocus. It’s well written, very in-depth and there’s also an audiobook option.

The OmniFocus Setup

There are several great videos from The OmniFocus setup that took place during Macworld. If you only plan to watch a few, start with Sven Fechner’s “A Fresh Take on Contexts” and David Sparks’ “Do Stuff!”.

Download OmniFocus for Mac, iPhone or iPad.

Great Resources

One-Press Task Creation in OmniFocus

Who is this for? Those looking to automate the creation of frequently created tasks in OmniFocus (or any task manager with a URL scheme) on iOS.

From David Sparks:

I recently received an email from reader Jonas Bergenudd with a really clever workflow. Jonas has things in his life that occasionally require replenishment, like batteries. So Jonas created stickers with QR codes on them using OmniFocus’s URL scheme to add a new task to his OmniFocus list.

For example, scanning this QR code takes your phone to the following URL – omnifocus:///add?name=buy%20aa-batteries.

David is right that this is clever, but I’m not sure that many are going to adapt this approach. The steps of creating a URL scheme, getting a QR code creator/scanner app, creating a QR code, printing the code and then using it at a later date seems cumbersome. However the seed of the idea is really interesting and potentially useful. Especially when you consider that, rather than going the QR code route, this would also work as a group (or groups) of actions in Launch Center Pro.

A while back, I shared how I use URL Schemes in Launch Center Pro to speed up the creation of common tasks in OmniFocus on the iPhone. These templates always had one or more variables (a person’s name or specifics on the action I’d need to take). I never thought to simplify things and use it to create an entire task.

Rather than creating QR codes, try taking the URL scheme above for batteries and adapt it to your own common tasks (just use %20 to put spaces between words). You can get up to 11 of these in a single group in Launch Center Pro. Much like Jonas’ intent with his QR codes, this would reduce the tiny bit of friction that often keeps us from getting common, yet easily overlooked tasks into OmniFocus.

At the moment, you can only include a task name and note into a task using the OmniFocus URL scheme, so you will still have to manually add a context, project and any Start or Due Dates. Here’s hoping the OmniGroup eventually expands this to include things like Contexts. How nice would it be to hit a single button in Launch Center Pro and get notified to buy batteries the next time you walk past your local store?

For more on Jonas’ QR Code based approach, be sure to check out David Spark’s original post.