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When I look back at the blog items I post linking to interesting developer essays and articles, many of them are originally from osnews.com. OSNews is a frequently updated blog that posts lots of small items every day. While nominally about operating systems, they really cover a much broader domain including websites and technology companies. They do an outstanding job of bringing early attention to interesting technology essays that I don't see mentioned elsewhere.
The 2007 Getting Organized Experiment (GOE) Freeware Programming Challenge
This page lists the freeware programs created during our 2007 Getting Organized Experiment Programming Challenge. The programs are inspired by our Getting Organized Experiment series where we explore systems and tools for becoming more organized and maximizing our productivity. Coders are instructed simply to creae a small free utility that, loosely defined, relates in some way to heling people work more efficiently.
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In the attention economy, what matters is your attention. Modern life is plagued with interruptions, some self-imposed (do you have a popup that lets you know when new mail arrives?), some not (phone ringing, people knocking on your door). The axiom is simple: your productivity is inversely proportional to the number of interruptions per hour. There exist psychological research that proves that doing two tasks -A,B- in an alternating sequence -ABABAB- is a lot harder than doing them on batches -AAABBB-. This is called task switch cost. Some research on economics proves that the same concept –switching tasks often is bad for productivity- is true organizations.
This is so simple it’s staggering. We thought: well, we don’t know how often we are interrupted, but we should! That’s how the interruptron was born.
The modern knowledge worker has a very short average time between interruptions. Some estimates are as low as 10 minutes. We need to be aware of when we have been interrupted and try to stretch time between interruptions as much as possible. Also, it’s important to be aware of when we are floating into ‘unproductive time’ and have some method to nag us back to work. This is the goal of the interruptron. Run it always, and you’ll have a good gasp of where your time goes.
Visit the Interruptron Webpage on WorkingCogs.com to learn more and download.
posted by urlwolf
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