Suggestion: a single master sort order for all lists of tasks (including both Active and Inactive tasks)


For me, sort order are absolutely crucial.

If I am correct, in GTDNext, there seems to be a completely separate sort order for each of the views under “Actions”:

  • Next Actions
  • Today
  • Focus
    …And this sort order is completely separate from the sort order used in the main “Projects & Actions” view.

Obviously the main “Projects & Actions” view is hierarchical. And if users are going to want to sort each of the above lists of Active Actions in a completely free manner, you can’t JUST sort branches of the hierarchical tree. (This is because thinking logically, tasks that are close to each other on the tree can’t be separated from each other without breaking the structure of the tree!)

But what I am questioning is whether we really need to have THREE completely independent sort orders. i.e. Could we not conflate the sort order of Next Actions, Today and Focus into a single sort order?

Surely the entire purpose of sort orders is to get your tasks into (at least roughly) the order in which your are going to execute them in. i.e. To show the “priority” of one’s tasks (in effect a fusion of urgency and importance). If so, this only needs to be entered once. I mean do any of you people need three separate sort orders?

Here I refer to each of the 4 “Lists”:

  • Inbox
  • Scheduled
  • Waiting
  • Someday

From what I can see these lists cannot be sorted AT ALL. i.e. Neither dragging & dropping nor Control/Shift/arrow have any effect. Surely that’s quite annoying! Again I would suggest that we have a single master sort order could be used. In fact surely it could be the same single sort order as I am suggesting for Active Task.

e.g. If I move specific task up to the top of the Waiting list, it would skip past as many other tasks in the “Master Sort Order” as are required. And if it skipped past any tasks on the Master Sort Order that were currently of Someday status that would be fine. And likewise if it skipped past any tasks on the Active list of tasks, that would be fine too.

To some extent these new positions would only become apparent when you change status of a task.

Does that make any sense?