Filter by status: Deferred Date

Hi there. Given the new Forecast perspective I’m finding myself using ‘Deferred’ dates more and more to flag work that is on the horizon. For me ‘deferred’ is used to plan tasks that I want to do today, tomorrow, this week etc, but that aren’t strictly ‘due’ on those days. In custom perspectives you can filter by ‘due soon’ or ‘due and flagged’ or ‘due and unflagged’, but can’t sort by deferred date. It would be great to be able to create perspectives to see what is deferred until today, this week, etc. Additionally, it would be great to filter to see what tasks were deferred to dates in the past (meaning, these were on my radar but are not any longer).

I realize that this functionality is not currently offered on the OF2 for iOS app, but would it still be possible to implement in the OSX version?

In the view options for an actions-organized perspective, I see options to group by defer date and to sort by defer date. Do those options not work for this?

Thanks Lucas - these get you most of the way there - they allow you to ‘group’ and ‘sort’ by deferred date, but they don’t filter tasks to show just those that have deferred dates. The result is that you get a mix of deferred tasks and tasks without deferred dates. I would like to create a perspective that is like a ‘due today’ perspective (which would show JUST the due items), but would show just the deferred items.

Just FYI, unless I am not understanding you correctly, that it really different from how defer dates are intended to be used. The idea of a defer date (known as a “start date” in OmniFocus 1) is to tell the system that you do not want to work on that action until that date. A task with a defer date in the future will be “Unavailable” until that date. Once you hit that date, the task will become “Available” (and will then show up in any perspectives that you have filtered to show only available, as opposed to remaining, actions).

I can understand why you would be tempted to use defer dates as “soft” due dates, but I think you might run into a lot of problems with this approach. To see those dates in any custom perspectives, you’ll need to show all “Remaining” tasks, instead of just the “Available” tasks. But that means you will also see other “Unavailable” tasks, like tasks in a sequential project that depend on some other task. Things could get confusing really fast.

You might want to check out this discussion on using defer dates:

Thanks, I will take a closer look at the other post. You are right, this does seem to make things confusing. I do use the defer date to hide actions until a date arrives. However, I do use defer dates as ‘soft due’ dates in order to put things on a calendar for planning purposes. This is definitely a work-around at best - one of my gripes with OF is that it doesn’t do a great job of helping with planning ‘when’ you will do work. Each week when I review my projects I want to be able to say these things can be done on Monday, these things on Tuesday, etc… and so I have used defer dates so I can get these tasks planned on a calendar. With the new Forecast perspective it is almost possible to work directly from that view when grinding through tasks - using deferred dates enables me to get these tasks on the calendar. But then a problem arises when I want to be able to see these tasks in different perspectives - either they are ‘hidden’ if I look at available tasks, or if I look at remaining tasks I get both the deferred tasks and everything else. Would be great to be able to filter to see just those marked with deferred dates.

Ideally, OF2 would have a planning mode in which you could drag tasks to days of the week to create a weekly worksheet - you wouldn’t need to use deferred dates as a work around.

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