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Org mode for Emacs – Features

Org mode is for keeping notes, maintaining TODO lists, planning projects, and authoring documents with a fast and effective plain-text system.



Org is built on top of outline.el.

You can easily navigate through headlines and (un)fold (sub)sections of your Org documents.

Org enhances outline.el with faster keybindings and more editing facilities.


More on document structure (manual)



Org can be used as a TODO lists manager and as a planner.

Each headline can be turned into a task.

Switching from one TODO keyword to another is C-c C-t or S-<left/right>.

Each item can also receive planning meta-data: scheduled and/or deadline cookies, tags, properties, etc.


More on TODO items (manual)

Handling dates and times (manual)



Clocking in a task is C-c C-x C-i.

Clocking out a task is C-c C-x C-o.

You can use I and O from an agenda buffer.

Clocking logs are stored in a drawer.

Org makes it easy to clock in and out and to produce nice reports, which you can customize to suit the needs of your hairy boss.


More on clocking tasks (manual)



Even with large .org files and thousands of tasks, it is easy to focus on what you need to do for each context.

The built-in agenda views display the scheduled and deadline task for the week, TODO lists and stuck projects.

The notion of agenda view can be customized to display what you need: a view for the day/month, restricted to a set of TODO keywords, using specific tag, etc.

This is one of the key aspect of Org: you can adapt Org to your workflow while stabilizing it.


More on agendas views (manual)

Tutorial on agenda commands (Worg)



Adding TODO items to your .org files is called capturing.

You can capture from everywhere, both within Emacs and from other applications like your web browser, pdf viewer, etc.

Capture templates allow you to tell what information you want to capture from various contexts (the file name, the current date, the region, etc.)


More on capturing (manual)



Org is a great plain-text table editor.

You can import tables from .csv and .tsv files, or directly from the current buffer; you can then export them in all the formats supported by Org (see below).

Org can also be used as a spreadsheet system.

You can add formulas using the Calc Emacs package or Emacs lisp code.


The built-in table editor (manual)

Org as a spreadsheet system (manual)

Introduction to editing tables (Worg)

Using Org as a spreadsheet (Worg)



Org is an authoring and publication tool.

You can use intuitive markup then have it converted to HTML, \(\LaTeX{}\), ODT – and much more.

Developers can easily create new backends for their favorite format (see the reference documentation).

You can also define publishing projects with one or more .org file(s), and one or more publication backends.


More on markup (manual)

More on exporting (manual)

More on publishing (manual)

Tutorial on publishing to HTML (Worg)

Tutorial on publishing to \(\LaTeX{}\) (Worg)


Working with source code


Org makes literate programming a handy and natural way to deal with code.

You can insert code snippets, have them fontified in the Org buffer, compute the results in-file and tangle your Org file to get a code source file.


With your mobile phone


Richard Moreland has developed MobileOrg, a free software for iPhone and iPod Touch for storing, searching, viewing and editing your Org files.

Matt Jones has developed an equivalent MobileOrg for the Android platform (check the source code on github).