Sometimes it is difficult for one to live in the modern world with the myriad distractions and the constant barrage of information from every electronic device and online service. While some of this information is clearly superfluous to our occupations and the well-greased machine of our life, other nuggets of thought-provoking brain candy can enrich even the most mundane knowledge worker’s daily routine.
I do not mean to sound like a technological apologist, but the fact remains that in order to get through my daily work, I need to rely not only on my own bag of tricks, but also the Pandora’s box of the World Wide Web.
So, how am I dealing with this constant flood of nigh-impossible-to-organize knowledge distractions? Not very well up to this point, but the tide has been changing for the better in the recent weeks.
I’ve done quite a few Software Spotlight articles covering various applications that I use on a constant basis. And while each of these applications deserve the spotlight in their own respect, I have come to rely on a service more than others: Remember The Milk.
Remember The Milk is a simple cloud-based task management system that provides all the functionality needed to run a reliable GTD system without much extra overhead. What RTM lacks in fancy features, it makes up for with integration with many other services out there, like Google Calendar and Twitter.
So, why has RTM become such an integral part of my lifestyle?
Every creative person before me has identified and dealt with a little issue that I’m going to call Writer’s Guilt. Writers Guilt occurs in two distinct–yet definitely intertwined–forms.
It occurs to me that everyone with a creative pursuit must go through this ordeal and come away making a choice in either direction. I have yet to make that choice, and end up doing 50% on both sides of the coin, rather than picking one and going full force.
What can I do about this? Let’s first identify the two sides of the story, then we’ll do a little research to find out what ways other writers suggest to get past this social and personal road block.
About a year ago, I posted an article about how I was going to clean up my office surroundings. This went completely into hibernation, and nothing was ever done to complete this monumental task.
That is, until yesterday. Check out the before and after photos below.
I was sitting and typing up another blog post earlier today, and I was interrupted rudely by a fellow student who decided it was completely up to me to fix her (or his) specific problem in their code. Being the pushover that I am, I lent a hand, only to find that this person was way over her (or his) head.
I don’t want to call names, or cite specific examples, so I’ll talk in really broad terms about why some people may need to rethink their career path when they make it to college, and find the work to be way over their heads.
I’ve talked before about how the higher education system is becoming a joke, and how the value of a Computer Science degree is ever decreasing. In fact, the other post that I was writing was about a similar subject. My opinions are certainly just that–opinions. Please take them as such, and don’t think that I am bashing any specific person or group of people with this post.
The fact is that some people aren’t cut out to be programmers.
Evernote is a service that promises to help you “Remember Everything”, promising to:
allow you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at any time, from anywhere.
Evernote is basically a self-described “external brain” that allows you to store any idea, reminder, memory that you need to remember in a trusted system.
I have been using Evernote for a few months now, and I wanted to weigh in on the system, and share my setup and how it helps me remember things.
With all the focus today on creating modern and more interactive interfaces with the computing platforms we use on a daily basis, it seems to me that we are focusing mostly on the senses of touch and sight, and neglecting the roll that sound could play in the way we use our computing devices.
I realize that most devices are targeted to work with a large variety of consumers, thus allowing someone to use a PC without needing to be able to experience audio-specific cues, but I have to wonder what sort of new ideas could come out of modern interface design if developers were allowed to use audio in a more functional manner.
There has been a lot in the news lately about the trial going on regarding popular BitTorrent tracking site, The Pirate Bay. Currently, the Swedish court system is determining whether it is illegal to provide a service that merely allows users to point other users to [possibly] copyrighted material without the rights-holder’s consent.
Much is to be said about this broad topic, and whether or not The Pirate Bay is simply providing a service, and not discriminating against nefarious use by its users; or whether they are running a business that continues to profit from the undermining of the MPAA and RIAA profits.
If one thing is clear from this trial, it’s that the industries are wasting their money. Not only has the prosecution had their collective heads up their asses during this whole debacle, they have proven time and again that they not only do not have evidence one way or the other, but also that they refuse to hire legitimate, well-rounded “expert” witnesses who have done their homework. Way to further dwindle your profit margin there, big industry!
This whole trial is diverting the public from the key point in the “illegal” file sharing mindset: If it is easier to pirate your product than to legitimately purchase, you are doing something wrong.