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[O] Preparing a cost estimate with Org

From: Lele Gaifax
Subject: [O] Preparing a cost estimate with Org
Date: Thu, 24 Jan 2019 16:59:55 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/27.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Hi all,

I use Org to produce "cost estimate" documents: the goal is to keep in a
single document a detailed log of what I'm asked to work on, the estimated
effort, the estimated cost and the time I actually spend on each item.

I'm already quite satisfied with the overall process and final result: I can
quickly export it as an elegant PDF document and give it to my customer, who
in turn accepts or rejects any single task, decisions that I bring back to the
document as tags (or todo labels) on the headlines.

For my current engagement, for several reasons I do not want to expose the
actual timings to the customer. Given that I could not find a way to omit a
particular column of a table, I opted to have two separated tables, one with
the summary for my own pleasure inside a COMMENT section, and another with
just the costs.

This is a sample of what I came up:

    * COMMENT Efforts summary

      #+NAME: efforts
      #+BEGIN: columnview :id global :indent t :skip-empty-rows t :format 
"%40ITEM(Item) %13Effort(Effort){:} %CLOCKSUM(Work)"
      | Item       | Effort | Work |
      | Tasks      |   3:00 | 0:47 |
      | \_  Task A |   1:00 | 0:19 |
      | \_  Task C |   2:00 | 0:28 |

    #+CONSTANTS: one_minute_cost=0.5

    * Cost estimate

      | Item       | Cost |
      | Tasks      |   90 |
      | \_  Task A |   30 |
      | \_  Task C |   60 |
      #+TBLFM: $1='(identity remote(efforts, @@#$1))::$2='(round (* 
(org-duration-to-minutes (identity remote(efforts, @@#$2))) $one_minute_cost))

    * Tasks

    ** Task A
       :Effort:   1:00
       CLOCK: [2019-01-24 gio 15:51]--[2019-01-24 gio 16:10] =>  0:19

    ** Task B                                                               
       :Rejected-Effort:   2:00

    ** Task C
       :Effort:   2:00
       CLOCK: [2019-01-24 gio 15:11]--[2019-01-24 gio 15:39] =>  0:28

The only problem with this approach is that it requires a manual intervention
to build the "cost estimate" table: first I recompute the "efforts" one with
C-c C-c, then I copy its body to the other table, delete the third column and
eventually do a C-c C-c on its TBLFM to recompute the costs.

As you can see, "Task B" has been rejected by the customer, so I had to rename
the associated effort property to remove it from the table.

Is there a more efficient/automatic way to achieve a similar result? I mean, is
there a way to

a) keep a single table, but omit a particular column at export time
   have the second table properly populated from the actual tasks tree as it
   happens for the first one

b) filter out entries with a particular tag/property, so that I can keep the
   original estimate

Thanks in advance for any hints,
ciao, lele.
nickname: Lele Gaifax | Quando vivrò di quello che ho pensato ieri
real: Emanuele Gaifas | comincerò ad aver paura di chi mi copia.
address@hidden  |                 -- Fortunato Depero, 1929.

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