Compact layout: displays info on one line w/status circles on the left [Edit: Now available in 2.3! OmniFocus Preferences ▸ Layout ▸ Custom Columns]

Continuing the discussion from How can the data density be improved?:

[quote=“kcase, post:39, topic:86”]
We’re very definitely listening, and the designs we’re trying to implement for 2.0 call for more data density and more contrast even in its current two-row-per-task layout.

We’re also looking at providing a compact one-row-per-task layout option for those who want it.…[/quote]

Now that our default layout has settled down into the state we want it to be in for the initial 2.0 release (more compact layout, more contrast, less noise from fields that aren’t relevant, and much easier to navigate with the keyboard), I think we’re finally ready to start thinking about how other layouts might look.

If you’d prefer to see all of your task information laid out in one line (so it’s more vertically compact) and would prefer your status circles on the left, you can start experimenting with this now by opening this URL:


After you launch the app, you should see something more like this:

To return to the default layout:


Some known issues off the top of my head with this prototype layout:

  • When the window is narrow enough that text starts to wrap, the status circle and note icon should stay aligned with the top row of text in the task title. (Right now, the status circle floats to the center of the entire task, while the note icon floats to the bottom.)
  • The flag icon which hangs off the corner of the status circle is pretty ridiculously small.

I’m sure there are more issues, but I’d love to hear from you all whether the fundamental layout changes are the sort of thing you’re looking for!


Awesome! I had gotten used to 2.0’s default style, but seeing this really shows how much I missed the tabular style from version 1.

I would say the flag button should probably be rethought in both views. The first time I saw the orange box cut off by the checkbox, I thought it was a rendering bug. Visually it doesn’t really suggest “flag this” until you click on it. I think having a separate button with an obvious “flag” icon would be a usability improvement.

Also, I could see dumping the “4 available, 1 due soon” line entirely in this view, which would allow you to condense the Title row to one line as well.

Definitely a step in the right direction. Thanks!


Thank you!

I was actually going back to OF 1 to process my inbox and review my tasks because of the data density issue. On a 27" iMac I like to see a lot of data, not white space.

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I’m really liking this prototype layout. It’s re-ignited my enthusiasm for 2.0.

Wow, what a difference. The compact layout tremendously improves data density and therefore readability. Thank you!

Alas, when I print, it prints out in the earlier, less-dense layout. Is there any way to get this compact layout to print the way it shows up on screen?

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Two minor hiccups:

  1. The only way I was able to set the flag was to go into the sidebar - I couldn’t set the flag by clicking on it.

  2. Similarly, clicking on the circle did not mark it as complete. I had to go into the sidebar and enter a date in Completed. Then the circle got its checkmark, and the text got its strikethrough.

I do notice, however, that I can set a flag or mark a task complete by right-clicking and getting the context menu. (But would prefer to click on the flag or the circle to accomplish the same.)

Hooray, great improvement. I suggest showing the flag as a separate field as it doesn’t work with the small circle the way it is.

(As an aside, I question why you ALWAYS show project, even in the two-line view, when grouping by project…it seems it would make more sense to show context in that instance).

I really like this new layout !!!

[pain in the neck mode] Still i’m just wondering if it could be possible to increase a little bit the circle size ? [/pain in the neck mode]

I like!! I like!! Thanks!!!

This compact view is way better, esp in project view. I’ve been avoiding Project Tab due to an overwhelming feeling ( a perceived feel I’ve a lot more to do ). I’ve been living in Forecast View selecting specific days.

Think I’d prefer notes icon justified left and circle checkbox on right (difficult to be sure without trying). I know some have shouted loudly to reverse to checkbox on left but the note icon left & checkbox on right just feels right to me.

This is definitely a step in the right direction, in my opinion at least.

However, I’d prefer some visual distinction between projects & contexts. Right now, they appear right next to each other with only a dot separating them, making it hard to scan down the list reviewing contexts (which I sometimes prefer to do in lists that aren’t grouped by context–such as when they’re grouped by start date). Separating them into columns would be great.

Further, I’m still not sure why some perspectives display contexts and others don’t. For example, in my “flagged and due perspective” I don’t see how to make contexts visible.

This is wonderful and resolved nearly all my hesitations with switching from OF1 to OF2.

My only gripe is that clicking the checkbox didn’t mark the item as complete. Spacebar did though. This might be due the the REALLY small circle size though. As much as I love the uber compact layout, I’d appreciate a slightly larger circle that I could click.

Also I don’t use flags, but given the white space to the left of the task, I could see maybe a orange or red rounded square or some other shape to the left of the circle as a better indication of flagged tasks than the teeny flag.

Thanks for helping us users who despised the right hand circles and density with one setting though. You guys just made my day!

Goodness, from the moment I opened a new window, I already knew this was going to be better. I can’t wait until this is in the Review section too.

To reiterate the other requests: Yes, a bigger checkbox^h^h^h circle, please!

I’d like the notes button to be moved left, between the check circle and the action name, aligned with the notes button for the project title (which in turn means shifting the check circle more to the left; plenty of space there.

Thanks for the hidden option.

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I prefer the default view. The compact view looks good in the project list but in contexts it just doesn’t look right.

Where is the defer date in the compact context view? It shows a date if there is already one present but doesn’t tab into the field.

Continuing the discussion from Alternate layout which displays everything on one line with status circles on the left:

It looks incredible.

Thank you for listening to the community.

Don’t have time at the moment to test out OmniFocus 2 for the next week and a half, but afterwards (when I am more free) I’ll have a look again (and download the latest build, as my current one is expired and cannot update).

I did mention how (in another thread, somewhere) how the checkboxes were better visually, as they gave an impression of an ease of clicking (whereas on mobile, a circle makes sense, on desktop, a checkbox is a lot better).

An OmniGroup staffer did mention how there was the ‘overflow’ (meaning that the area around the circle (essentially forming a square, like the old checkbox) can be clicked.

Visually though, a checkbox would be better.

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Very, very nice. Especially useful and clean when the sidebar is hidden and when the window is narrowed. Developers probably spend a lot of time on huge-screens and may underestimate how crucial it is on an 11- or 13-inch screen to use the screen real estate efficiently. This is terrific!

The outline indentation seems just right too; gives a clear sense of the hierarchy without taking up too much space.

One point to improve, and this should be easy: the Notes field on projects is not yet in line with the title (the way it is for tasks within a project. Especially because I don’t happen to have much in the Notes field at the level of projects, these generates a lot of white space (see the second line of the screenshot below.)

Also noticed than tabbing through the fields in the new compact view skips defer date, though it seems to be a field that is displayed.

I use the Quick Entry window quite a lot but after converting to the alternative compact one-row layout, the defer and due date fields do not work! I have tried tabbing to the fields and clicking directly but nothing would allow me to input a date or even bring up a calendar. Love this layout otherwise.


Well done! This view changes everything for me. I can finally stop using OF1


This is excellent. Much more efficient. Much less time to get an brief overview of tasks, especially when there are many tasks on the list. A really HUGE improvement.

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