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Shopping with Org Mode

I'm a pretty heavy user of Org Mode to organize everything from my work projects to my personal calendar; it's a great piece of kit to generate project trees, do timetracking, simple spreadsheet operations, and so much more things.

I use the custom agenda feature of org-mode to create a bunch of different agendas; one for work, one for my projects, one of general chores and todos (which I can then filter to "home chores", or "computer chores") all the way to a pocket-style read it later bookmark list.

One of the most useful thinks recently has been creating shopping lists.

Apartment Things to Research
  lists:      TODO Couch                                     :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Coffee table                              :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Dining Table set                          :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO New bed frame + box spring                :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Lighting for desk area                    :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Desk chair                                :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Some X10 hardware                         :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Subwoofer                       :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:

=================================================================================================
Aparment Things to Purchase
  lists:      NEXT Salt and Pepper set             :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Spice rack and spices           :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Cookbooks                       :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Casserole dish, baking pans and tools :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Earthquake kit                  :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT [[http://www.amazon.com/Organize-It-All-Mahogany-Stackable/dp/B001G7TXTU/ref=pd_sbs_hg_10?ie=UTF8&refRID=1G7FS49DVWQW6R33BKZB][Shoe rack]]                                 :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::

=================================================================================================
Things to Research
  lists:      TODO [[http://amosgoldbaum.com/Shirts.html][Amos goldbaum muni shirt]]                           :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO [[http://www.reddit.com/r/BuyItForLife/comments/292cti/discussion_bifl_items_to_give_to_a_child_for/][BIFL items to give to a child for every birthday until 18]]    :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO [[http://www.slickwraps.com/Nexus-5-Teak-Wood-Skin-p/sw-nexus5-wsteak.htm][Nexus 5 Teak Wood Skins]]                                      :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO [[http://www.trakke.co.uk/shop/mule-waxed_cotton][Mule - Waxed Cotton - Trakke]]                                 :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Buy a TokyoFlash watch                                       :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO [#C] Buy some nice board games                     :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://alphabasic.myshopify.com/][Alphamart - Welcome]]                                   :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Kits from [[http://flitetest.com/scratch-builds/#/listSort%3Drating_high_to_low&dateFilter%3Dpublished%2B30%2BDays][Flite Test]]                               :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://keycapsdirect.com/key-caps.php][Whats New - Custom keycaps direct from the manufacturer]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008CXFM64][Amazon.com: StarTech.com USB 3.0 to DisplayPort  2560 x 1600 External Video Card Multi Monitor Adapter  (USB32DPPRO): Computers & Accessories]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JTCDAWA?tag%3Dcodihorr-20][Amazon.com: Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography eBook: Neil Patrick Harris: Kindle Store]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005MKERVQ/ref%3Doh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie%3DUTF8&psc%3D1][Amazon.com: T-Mobile 4G Hotspot (T-Mobile): Cell Phones & Accessories]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.amazon.com/Minisuit-Bluetooth-Nexus-FHD-Rubberized/dp/B00EDTTIXE][Amazon.com: Minisuit Bluetooth Keyboard Stand Case for Google Nexus 7 FHD 2013 (Rubberized Non-Slip Grip): Computers & Accessories]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.corporatearmor.com/Fortinet-Advanced-Technologies-FTK-300-5-products_id-5435.html?gclid%3DCjkKEQjwlIqdBRDy6JSK4Lmn1akBEiQAVa9dPZCOJ-At_-Ki0xB3AmVMQJNxtypcP7xASZFzIkLeEg7w_wcB][Fortinet FortiToken 300 5-Pack USB Tokens for PKI Certificate and Client Software, Perpetual license]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.gog.com/game/anachronox][Anachronox for download $2.99 - GOG.com]]               :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[http://www.screentekinc.com/Lenovo_ThinkPad_X230_Series_23202EJ--12.5-inch--1920x1080-full-hd-laptop-lcd-screen.shtml][Lenovo ThinkPad X230 Series 23202EJ 12.5" Full-HD (LED backlight) LCD Screens]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review [[https://archive.org/details/JakeHughesAnachronoxTheMovie][Anachronox: The Movie : Jake Hughes : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO [[https://supporters.eff.org/shop/wget-not-crime-sticker][EFF Supporter stickers]]                             :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO Review [[https://www.massdrop.com/buy/tex-yoda?mode%3Dguest_open][TEX Yoda TrackPoint Keyboard - Massdrop]]               :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review http://shopdh.spreadshirt.com/i-know-david-man-sized-A8565684/customize/color/228 :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review http://www.rotring.com/en/                            :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review http://www.transocean-game.com/                       :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review https://www.massdrop.com/buy/clear-ergodox-keycaps    :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Review https://www.massdrop.com/buy/grifiti-ergodox-wrist-rest :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO [[http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00F9SWK9M/ref%3Dwl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_ttl?_encoding%3DUTF8&colid%3D1PAXCBPF5NDQW&coliid%3DI1SRC3Y6IRJ7ZH][Amazon.com: Novation Launchpad Mini USB Midi Controller for Performing and Producing Music with iPad, Mac and PC: Musical Instruments]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO [[http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0043M56SW/ref%3Dwl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_ttl?_encoding%3DUTF8&colid%3D1PAXCBPF5NDQW&coliid%3DIE6K3ZXYEI1IG][Amazon.com: Writing GNU Emacs Extensions: Editor Customizations and Creations with Lisp (Nutshell Handbooks) eBook: Bob Glickstein: Kindle Store]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO [[http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00DHEJ28C/ref%3Dwl_it_dp_o_pd_nS_ttl?_encoding%3DUTF8&colid%3D1W3C2HSLRY9UZ&coliid%3DI3R67RU6CAME33&psc%3D1][Amazon.com: Corsair Flash Survivor Stealth USB 3.0 128GB USB Drive (CMFSS3-128GB): Computers & Accessories]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      TODO Couch                                     :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Coffee table                              :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Dining Table set                          :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO New bed frame + box spring                :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Lighting for desk area                    :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Desk chair                                :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Some X10 hardware                         :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      TODO Subwoofer                       :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:

=================================================================================================
Things to Purchase
  lists:      NEXT [[http://m.containerstore.com/mt/www.containerstore.com/shop/laundry/dryingRacksAccessories?utm_medium=Affiliate&productId=10009850&utm_source=Linkshare&sku=10022900&utm_campaign=Linkshare_Affiliate&un_jtt_redirect][The Container Store > FlipFOLD® Laundry Folder]]               :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      NEXT [[http://store.iam8bit.com/monument-valley][Monument Valley : iam8bit]]                          :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT [[http://www.thesafetysupplycompany.co.uk/p/4993831/AA-Emergency-Car-Hammer-and-Safety-Knife---No-Vehicle-Should-be-Without-One---AA--.html?gclid=Cj0KEQjw0POdBRCq3arGgYD05pMBEiQAmiUeTurF11IjxIbf4lnh80FmKXH8hIW3o8RvE4wHoDjkbA0aAryZ8P8HAQ#.U70tWvldV8E][Emergency Car Hammer and Safety Knife - No Vehicle Should be Without One - ]] :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::
  lists:      NEXT [[https://anamanaguchi.gomerch.com/products/all-over-everything-tee][All-Over Everything Tee - Anamanaguchi]]             :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Salt and Pepper set             :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Spice rack and spices           :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Cookbooks                       :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Casserole dish, baking pans and tools :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT Earthquake kit                  :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::CHRISTMAS:
  lists:      NEXT [[http://www.amazon.com/Organize-It-All-Mahogany-Stackable/dp/B001G7TXTU/ref=pd_sbs_hg_10?ie=UTF8&refRID=1G7FS49DVWQW6R33BKZB][Shoe rack]]                                 :NONPROJECT:PURCHASE:APARTMENT:PURCHASE::

Yikes, that's a lot going on and needs to be cleaned up, but it's pretty easy to manage. We've got four sections here, and it's easily expandable to more as necessary.

If I need something, I quickly capture it with a few rules applied:

  • Things that are definite needs, I tag as NEXT
  • Things that are things that I want, or need but am not sure exactly what I should get I tag as TODO. For example, I want a bunch of furniture, but I don't know what that looks like yet, so I have them marked as TODO; when I have downtime I can consult this list and do some window shopping.
  • Things tagged APARTMENT show up under a dedicated list since that's a long-term project of mine, to improve the quality of my living environment. I have a similar (unshown) tag for GROCERIES, and am planning to split out an ONLINE one for amazon, etc.

This agenda gets synced to my phone using MobileOrg, which I can then consult when I'm at the grocery store, or out shopping. I'm planning to expand this with things I want to buy for Christmas gifts, as well, to get in to the holiday season; Things that I want are already tagged as CHRISTMAS, which I can export a filtered agenda of for family.

At any rate, the code for this is all tied up in the org-agenda-custom-commands list, which carries all of the custom agenda command, shocking I know.

(add-to-list 'org-agenda-custom-commands
             '("P" "Shopping List"
               ((tags-todo "+APARTMENT+PURCHASE/!TODO"
                           ((org-agenda-overriding-header "Apartment Things to Research")
                            (org-tags-match-list-sublevels t)
                            (org-agenda-sorting-strategy
                             '(todo-state-down effort-up))
                           ))
                (tags-todo "+APARTMENT+PURCHASE/!NEXT"
                           ((org-agenda-overriding-header "Aparment Things to Purchase")
                            (org-agenda-sorting-strategy
                             '(todo-state-down effort-up))
                           ))
                (tags-todo "PURCHASE/!TODO"
                           ((org-agenda-overriding-header "Things to Research")
                            (org-tags-match-list-sublevels t)
                            (org-agenda-sorting-strategy
                             '(todo-state-down effort-up))
                           ))
                (tags-todo "PURCHASE/!NEXT"
                           ((org-agenda-overriding-header "Things to Purchase")
                            (org-agenda-skip-function 'bh/skip-project-tasks)
                            (org-agenda-sorting-strategy
                             '(todo-state-down effort-up))
                           ))))
)

This uses a custom filtering function from Bernt Hansen's wonderful literate org-mode config. You can find that there, or in my dotfiles repository. Basically, Bernt defines this idea of Projects, aka tasks with subtasks, which I use fairly heavily in my Org workflow; If I were to create a scheduled entry TODO Go to Safeway with NEXT sub-headings for each item I needed to buy, I wouldn't want "Go to Safeway" to appear in my "Things to Research" shopping list, would I? If that's not a sane workflow for you, just kill the org-agenda-skip-function line.

I've got a bunch more neat things in my .emacs that I'd like to explore, both to share the knowledge and to help refine them myself.