Visualisation of activities and “computing” a project plan/schedule/cost estimate–like OmniPlan, Microsoft Project, Primavera–are different. I have long experience these project management tools, especially Project (for small and huge projects). For their intended purpose they are fantastic and a great tool for computing schedules (including Critical Path to allow milestones to be targeted), costs (to allow budgets), resource planning, progress tracking and measurement, Earned Value Analysis, … (the list is long). What professional Cost and Schedule Engineers do for “projects”, i.e. investments with a beginning, middle, and end. I’m not at all sure you are talking about your “stuff” being real projects.
David, from what you indicate, you are not going to be happy with using a professional Cost and Schedule tool to “keep track” of stuff. I don’t have full visibility of the plethora of tools (web-based and PC-based) that might visualise how you want to visualise, so I can’t offer a list of ideas. Sorry.
There are a number of project visualisation tools out there… probably more on the Windows platform than on Mac. But with VMWare and Parallels who cares? (Some are extremely beautiful and often senior management “loves and expects” them without realising the cost/time to produce). The big problem then is feeding these apps and keeping them up to date.
I notice that with OmniFocus (which I use extensively for my personal “keep track of stuff” tool) you can export to a CSV. You can get out of OmniFocus task name, status, start date, due date, duration, etc. I don’t see how to get the project logic (successors and predecessors), but maybe that doesn’t matter for visualization. Surely that data can be munged to import into any of the project schedules (but I would not recommend it even if easy for visualization) or one of those visualization tools which may work.
Bottom line: if you are looking for a tool, start with taking a look at Milestones Professional from Kidasa. Yes, it needs Windows, but who cares? You have a business to run. That can take the output from your Omni Focus to create a “visualization”.
But take care and think through how you will keep it alive. The real project tools, e.g. Project, have ways to productively keep track of actuals and the knock-on changes in dates/costs/deadlines. For you, maybe your planing just lives in Milestones Pro. Or your planning can live in Omni Plan. I stress this because I see over and over that the biggest time waster by many people in thse sorts of things, especially in small to medium size-ed companies running project investments is munging the data from here to there to make “pretty” presentations at the expense of having a viable project plan/schedule.
Tread carefully else you’ll get overwhelmed with tools and lose site of what you are doing.
Update: from comments above by “Anthonylhrig”, I took a quick look at Aeon Timeline demo copy. Can import CSV from Omnifocus and does what appears to be great visualisations. At first glance, seems to be one-way. After seeing this, Milestones Pro probably not what you want (but what it does is what you want), and maybe Aeon Timline is a good first stab.
Same warning, though. Getting stuck in the tool trap can sometimes lead to a time sync. But if the time spent results in something useful for the business (and your “head”), go for it!