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Outlook, Creating Tasks and setting Categories

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  • Outlook, Creating Tasks and setting Categories

    I just checked teh online help but couldnt find what i was looking for, maybe someone here could help.

    Perhaps im dumb but for the past 4 weeks i have been trying to figure a way of quickly assigning a category to a new task. At present i type in the new task in the bar above the category view and then i have to drag and drop from none to my desired category. Ive tried right clicking in the category tree below the entry bar but only to not find an "Add to" in the context menu... is there a quick way to add automatically assign a category without drag and dropping.


  • #2
    Do you have the categories you are not working with collapsed? If not, I think that wold save you time in not having to drag an item a long way. To me, the drag and drop seems pretty quick. I like to add things to the "None" category and then later in the day drag each one to its appropriate category jsy one right after another.

    The only other shortcuts I can tell you are:
    <Shift><Ctrl><K> opens a new task from anywhere in the Outlook environment
    <Alt><G> opens your category list (instead of clicking the category button) after you have opened a task
    You can select a category by typing the first letter of the category name and hitting space rather than checking the box (but only if the category starts with a word and not the @ symbol)
    <Alt><D> takes you right to the due date without having to click there with the mouse.
    Typing a number in the due date and hitting <Tab> assigns it to that day of the current month. (If I enter 14 and hit <Tab>, I get "Tue 6/14/2005"
    <Alt><S> will save and close a task.

    I don't know if this is helpful at all, but other readers may see a shortcut they did not already know about.



    • #3
      Configure your view so that it shows the Category column. When you're entering the task, tab over to that column.



      • #4
        I use ActiveWords, and after I tab over to categories, I type 1atc to expand to @Computer.


        • #5
          I hope I'm understanding your question correctly...

          Right-click on the gray part that says "Categories: None"; select "Categories". Type in the first couple of letters for the category that you want in order to quickly scroll down the list. Use the up/down arrow keys, if necessary, to select the correct category. Press the space bar to select the category. Press "Enter" on your keyboard.

          Your new task should now be in the correct category. This method only works for one new task at a time, or if all of the NAs that you've just entered belong in the same category.

          Alternatively, if you take kewm's advice and show the Categories field in your view, you can simply right-click in that column and select Categories to get to the categories selection box.

          I always enter my items using the full form. I use the shortcut keys (Ctrl+Shift+K) to open a new task form. Then, you can use Alt+G to quickly go to the Categories section.

          Hope that helps!

          ETA: It took longer to type these methods out than it actually takes to do them. In general, I find keyboard shortcuts a lot faster than using a mouse, even to drag an item from one place to another.
          Last edited by Dawn; 06-15-2005, 01:03 PM.


          • #6
            Thanks for the advice

            Thanks for that advice. Actually i have been using Pocket Informant for my ppc and in that you simply right click (or the equivalent for ppc) on a category header and select new task and voila the form is automatically assigned to that task. No need to drag and drop, no need for active words and no need to open a new sheet and then select/type the category. I cant believe that there isnt such an option. Actually Outlook feels a little backwards for me... i dont know why but it just seems overly complicated and doesnt do anything to make life easier for the user... that or im just bitter about this category thing.. haha

            Now if i do have to settle for what you have proposed i have another problem. When i open the category menu it only displays the default categories that came with Outlook such as Business, Home etc and none of my GTD context ones i have set up EVEN THOUGH they are displayed in Outlook when i look at my tasks.

            Can anyone explain whats going on.