Link to OmniFocus Perspective?

How about a way to link to OmniFocus perspectives? There’s already a way to link to a task, project, or tag. I think linking a perspective, custom or otherwise, would really open up some possibilities.

I’m really excited by Hook, having it only discovered it recently through Joel’s OmniFocus, HoudahSpot integration.


We’ll be getting in touch with OmniGroup to ask them for a feature that would make their existing linking more useful, and provide benefit to Hook users. Currently, when you active an OmniFocus:// link, OmniFocus modifies the frontmost window.

What OmniFocus really should do is a quick look up to find a window that currently exposes the target task or project. If OmniFocus can find the target, it should bring it to the foreground.

That would be particularly helpful for power users (like myself) who often have many windows open, each on its own perspective. (I often have over 20 OmniFocus window open.) I’ve been using Hook internally at CogSci Apps for over two years and been wanting this from OmniGroup from the beginning, but had not asked them. Will do.

Anyone who agrees with my proposal could start a thread with OmniGroup or request the same of them.

NB: the above is not exactly what you asked for. But I think it achieves something similar. There may be a way to achieve what I describe with OmniFocus’s scripting API, but it would be slower than if OmniGroup implemented it in in OmniFocus in Objective-C, which is what I think they should do.

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Great to hear that you’re in contact with Omni about it.

20 windows! I’m curious how you go about using it.

I should write a blog post about this. It’s partly because I am leading team projects at 3 different organizations (CogSci Apps, Simon Fraser University, and CogZest), and collaborating on other projects at them. (e.g,, I organize things quite hierarchically. In OmniFocus, I have > 3,000 projects and > 15,500 actions (and I use other apps, per below).

I name my OmniFocus perspectives such that I can very quickly navigate to a window. (But I’ve found OmniFocus 3 to be sluggish compared to OF2. Other users don’t seem to have the same problem. I’m an outlier). Having lots of windows open allows me to implement the “2-second rule” I discuss in both my Cognitive Productivity books. (Hook is also meant to enable that rule, along with other apps, like launchers.)

I don’t put non-tasks in OmniFocus. And I don’t use it for reading lists. My use of OmniFocus, OmniOutliner and nvALT for TODO’s is described in Cognitive Productivity with macOS®: 7 Principles for Getting Smarter with Knowledge. )

I use some GTD principles but not all of them (and I am quite OK with that --GTD does not suite my needs. There’s a footnote about that in my first book, Cognitive Productivity: Using Knowledge to Become Profoundly Effective.) One of the GTD principles I do use is to get tasks out of my head and documented asap.

I’ve written an action to write a blog post on this topic. The action is in one of my OmniOutliner blogging “plan” files. I use OmniOutliner for keeping track of blog posts to write because I sometimes immediately flesh out the topics a bit; and OmniFocus isn’t as good for that as OmniOutliner is.

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