Productivity with OmniFocus and DEVONthink Pro 2 October 4, 2009Posted by judismith in Automator, DEVONthink, Email, Interoperability, Macintosh OS X, OmniFocus, Productivity Tools.
I’ve just spent the weekend tweaking my workflow to deal with the over abundance of information that my job generates. OmniFocus is my key app since that’s where I keep all my tasks.
To complete the picture, I started comparing all of my information managers – Yojimbo, Evernote, DevonThink Pro and even the good old OS X Finder. Then I ran across a brilliant workflow by Rob Trew on the Devon Technologies Forums. As Rob puts it, verbs are maintained in OmniFocus and nouns are kept in DEVONthink Pro. He’s written some very nice AppleScripts to facilitate the workflow between these two apps. One script will create a matching project in DEVONthink for the project in OmniFocus. Another creates an OmniOutliner file in the DEVONthink project as a notes document. There’s another script to archive the project out of OmniFocus and into DEVONthink when its done. I encourage you to read Rob’s post and visit his website.
In working through that process, I discovered that in addition to Rob’s scripts I needed a few other things. My workflow involves scanning documents into DEVONthink since it does optical character recognition, making the resulting PDF searchable. After I scan the document, I need to create a task in OmniFocus to ensure that I don’t forget what I was supposed to do with that document. So I wrote this script that will create an OmniFocus task in the Inbox from a document record.
One other thing I needed to adjust is that I get a lot of information via email. If it is a task, no problem. I can use the OmniFocus clipping service and a new task is created with an attachments and the email text. The problem is when I have a document that I need to store as part of a project in DEVONthink. So I created this Automater Service (works on Snow Leopard, not sure about anything earlier) to grab the attachments from an email and create new records in the DEVONthink Inbox. It will also snag the email text and include that as a comment on the document record in DEVONthink. The Automator Service uses a Run AppleScript Action for the bulk of the work. So you should be able to edit it to your needs.
That pretty much settled it for me – at least for this month. I’m still holding out for the super automated task manager. Check back. I’ll let you know when I find it. Until then, OmniFocus and DEVONthink Pro with AppleScript come pretty close.
UPDATE: I’ve updated the Automator Service to add the URL for the Mail message to the DEVONthink Pro record so you can get back to the email message that had the attachment. The updated service is found here.