OmniFocus 2: Quick defer + due date entry with TextExpander

In OmniFocus 2, there is not a good way to quickly enter a defer date and then a due date: it involves tabbing a bunch of times or using the mouse to move between fields.

TextExpander to the rescue!

I use the following snippets to set the same defer + due date for tasks:

  • Tomorrow at 9am: xx1 → tomorrow 9am%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%tomorrow 9am%key:enter%
  • +2 days at 9am: xx1 → 2 days 9am%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%2 days 9am%key:enter%
  • Next Monday at 9am: xxmon → Monday 9am%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%Monday 9am%key:enter%
  • Next Saturday 9am: xxsat → Saturday 9am%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%%key:tab%Saturday 9am%key:enter%

I also have "x1", "x2", "xmon", and "xsat" set up to work in the quick entry box, which requires a few less tabs.

You can grab all these snippets here.


Ken Case of The Omni Group explains that users will only have to press tab four times if they have the "All controls" checked in the Full Keyboard Access portion of System Preferences > Keyboard Preferences > Shortcuts. I always have this turned on, like many users, so I can tab between form controls.

So if you don't have this enabled, you'll need to adjust the number of tabs in the TextExpander snippets. I still think this idea is useful for quickly setting defer+due dates if you often use the same sets of dates, even if the fields are only one tab away.

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5 responses
This is some really smart stuff! I can see myself using it tweaked a bit. What I don't understand is if you're going to set the due date to be the same as the defer date, why set a defer date at all?
@Cailean: Setting an item to have the same due + defer date means that it will disappear until it is due. I use this for things that need to be done immediately at a certain time, like remembering to do something immediately when I arrive at work.
Tomorrow 9am
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