Projects behavior

(Originally posted on uservoice by Proximo - moved to new forum on 5/6)

I understand this is early beta, but just wanted to make sure I understood the direction of projects. Currently there is no single next actions that I can find. When I enter something into the system, it jumps directly into a project and from there I can mark a task as a Next Action.

I assume in the future you will have a standard inbox that collects tasks, but also support single next actions that are not part of a project. Just wanted to verify.


This is a valid and important point.

Currently, inbox items and single next actions all land at the “top level”, so to speak, and are visible individually in the left menu as “top level” items. This is probably not desirable for any user in the final version.

The big strength and flexibility of GTDNext’s hierarchical tree approach is that any item is a potential parent or child - a “general potential container” if you will. This is great - I love it - but it also entails certain difficulties and needs, which need to be addressed, two of which have been described in the thread

Single actions and inbox actions that “live” entirely outside the tree structure are a third case that needs to be addressed.

Perhaps a simple solution is to consistently hide from the left menu any and all items that have neither a parent nor any children? This is what a single next action is, right? And it is also what an inbox item is, right?

But then what should be the default for a single action with subtasks, i.e technically an item with children? Maybe this should be hidden, too, if and only of it has been marked as an “action” (see the other thread), and otherwise should be displayed in the left menu (based on the default assumption that it is a “project” since it has children)?

on May 6, 2014 9:33 AM

Come to think of it, maybe there is a
simpler and better solution than the one I just mentioned for the
“uncategorized” single actions and inbox items:

There could be two compulsory system containers for these - Inbox and
Uncategorized - where new tasks automatically land unless a particular
parent is explicitly selected. (“New top level item” would then need to
be one of the “parent” options when you select a parent).

These two containers could be fully visible in the All Projects main
pane. But in the left menu at least the Inbox container should be
suppressed as there is already a special Inbox link higher up. The
“Uncategorized” container should perhaps be visible there, though, if
not empty, for quick direct access from the left menu.

I like the idea of just removing single actions from the left pane - as really if they only have a single action, they are not a project. We don’t really allow for creating a project until you put an action into the project. It’s either a single action, or it becomes a project once you hit that tab key!

If the single action didn’t show up in the left nave, but did show up as single action in the center pane (as is does today) - would that be an issue? Why? I think some people automatically believe that a top level item needs to be a project, but does it really? Why can’t it just be an single action?

Exactly. A container without children (and without a parent) “is” a single action, right? That was my initial idea, too - above, before I came up with the alternative “container solution”.

No problem at all as far as I am concerned. As long as they do not “pollute” the left menu it is OK. And as long as they do not get mixed up with Inbox items. I think we are on the same page. Having containers for them has the advantage that you could collapse/expand it in the main pane and could also link to it from the left menu. But I am fine with either.

Okay, great, yes sounds like we are on same page. Also I just noticed up above I said left pane - see below - when I meant center pane. I’m going to correct that for future readers. [quote=“James, post:3, topic:14”]
action in the left pane (as is does today)

In our build last night we now prevent single actions from showing up in the left pane’s “All Projects” window. They still still who up as single actions in the main project page. That page may be titled incorrectly, as it is really the place where you can see all of your actions and projects. The complete tree. @Proximo let me know if that makes sense.

I must say WOW. I know I am OT but development here seems to be goiung like crazy and customer feedback is actually listened to seriously. I am already sold :frowning: