"Sections" in projects?

Several of my projects last for many months, sometimes years. It often happens that a given part of a specific project is done, and I then proceed to the next part. It would be useful if I could somehow “draw a line” within a project to separate older notes (below the “line”) that are done with, and more recent notes (above the “line”) that are relevant to present work. Bonus points if I can show/hide what is below the line.

The ability to draw several of these lines would let one divide a project in several chronological parts. I would use such an ability a lot :smile: currently I use empty, closed-up notes with titles like “==========” to reach the same result

The way I see it, the functionality could be similar to the “project sections” that were introduced in Things and that can be found in Todoist today. Those are not really containers at heart but rather “simple” delimiters.

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For more complex and longer “projects” I simply make it a category or subcategory which means I can use the “agenda projects” to organise notes. The only problem comes when the project ends as you can’t (currently) archive categories, only projects.

I’m not sure it is really worth the added complexity. There are already quite a few ways to deal with this. Eg.

  1. Split into multiple projects in a category
  2. Mark older notes as “Done”
  3. Collapse older notes
  4. Turn older notes into Footnotes pinned to the bottom

In future we hope to add more power to the “Done” feature too, so you could hide them, for example.

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I’m already collapsing older notes and marking them as done. Being able to hide “Done” notes would be a step in the right direction indeed :slight_smile:

I’m not a big fan of turning one project into a category, that would mess with the overall structure (why should a project be promoted up in the hierarchy, next to other non-project categories?). Being able to nest projects inside other projects would be good too, but I’m thinking it would be even more complex than the sections I’m proposing above…

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Two cents
Overviews of searches for notes that are both “open” and have specific tags work quite well.

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I agree with you. I also encountered the same problem as you. Sometimes a project will be completed in several stages, and a “dividing line” is needed to divide them, so that when browsing the notes, you can quickly distinguish the stage of the notes.

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Just to give a feel of how it would work visually

To me, this feels a bit like archiving notes. Is that basically what you want?

Then again, marking as done would be almost the same as archiving, assuming you were able to hide the done notes. So I think we will get to something like this in time.

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Well, ideally I would like to be able to retain a visual representation of the history of the project… I don’t really want to hide away the oldest notes, I want to get an idea of “those notes were made during that part of the project, and those other notes were made during another part”.

But I see your point, maybe hiding the done notes would get me close to what I want. Maybe it’s worth revisiting that idea later :slight_smile:

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I think trying to put a partition in a list like that is a problem. What happens when you change the date on a note, or move it? I would say, if this is important to you, you could simply create an empty note called ========================= STAGE 2 ==================

I would say, if this is important to you, you could simply create an empty note called ========================= STAGE 2 ==================

Well, that’s what I’ve done in the shots above :slight_smile:

Thinking a bit more about what I’m trying to achieve, I’d say that often during a project I need to dive quite deep into a specific problem, that is too large to fit into a single note. It becomes something like a sub-project of the current project. After a few notes, the subproject is over, and I resume the higher plan. When I look at the overall timeline, it’s not ideal to have notes for the project and notes for the sub-projects lined up, all looking the same. The sections I proposed would help distinguish parts of the projects (such as sub-projects) that belong together.

I’m going to experiment with starting subproject note names with symbols so they visually separate from the rest of the timeline.

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I’d encourage you to think about using categories and subcategories.

I know it means you use a slightly different structure in different areas of Agenda, but I find it’s not actually a problem once you accept that!

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I understand the objection to sub-categories here – as soon as you put a project in a sub-category, it moves to the bottom of the project list.

My approach has been to make a separate project, and just have them one after the other in the projects list. Occasionally I have a plan project ordered earliest date first, and a journal project ordered latest date first).

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Not if you have more than one subcategory, and always put projects into a subcategory.

Sure, and now you’re in the spot where you have subcategories that may only have a single project in them, because you wanted to put multiple projects in a subcategory but position them above a single project.

- project1
- subcat 1
  - subproj 1
  - subproj 2

The only ways I know of to position subcat 1 above project 1 are to:

  1. Create another subcategory that only contains project 1
  2. Move project 1 into a different category altogether

Neither of those suit my tastes, which is why I just keep a flat list and position related projects right next to each other.

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Yeah, for me too flat lists are currently the only way to go. A way to do things is to use prefixes in the actual project names, eg

  • project 1
  • project 1 sub 1
  • project 1 sub 2
  • project 2
  • project 3
  • project 3 sub 1
    Etc

That keeps things neatly ordered and you don’t add an artificial layer for projects that don’t need it.

Of course the ideal solution would be to be able to add subprojects that can live inside a project (and fold), but that’s a lot of complexity to add code-wise.

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Is it somehow possible for notes to have different background colors? This is what I thought about the other day to make a visible distinction between certain types of information in a project.

This isn’t possible at the moment, something we might add in the future.

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Update: Changing note background color is now possible in Agenda 15, see it in action here

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