Monday, December 31, 2007

How I sped myself up in 07

I love reading life hacker and other tips to improve myself. I am always looking for another tip that I can add to my arsenal to make something that I do faster, easier, or not necessary. In 2007 I have fully migrated myself to GMail. There are some good pluses, and some things that I don't like. I have read a lot about the different plug-ins for GMail and GTD but I have found them all to be slow, so I have kind of build my own GMail GTD folder system, without the plugins. As long as I'm consistent it's fine. I also use Google Calendar and share some calendars with others to prevent duplicate entries. I have fully implemented GTD into my life, and do pretty well with it. I still have more trouble at home than at work, because I have a harder time controlling the inbox items from my wife, but for the most part I am doing well with keeping myself organized and actually getting things done, which is the purpose.

One of the biggest things I have done though is to migrate almost completely away from windows desktop icons, or even quick launch icons, into slickrun. With a quick CTRL+M and a single work I can launch any of the applications that I use. I also have several folder shortcuts setup here. This makes it very fast for me to open new programs. Windows is nice for some things, but it really sucks at launching new applications. Just clicking on the start menu can cause my computer to freeze for 10-15 seconds, which when I'm trying to work seems like even longer. I like the command line because it's fast and I have a good memory so I don't have any problem remembering the launch keywords, especially since I chose them. More importantly though MagicWords are auto-complete so as soon as the word is unique I can hit enter and get moving on what I want to. Windows does excel in things like multi-selecting items in a folder view, and selecting an odd set of files such as those that CTRL+mouse clicking selects. Another thing that windows is awesome at is the drag and drop of data from one application to another and having them both understand how to interpret that data.

Looking ahead to 2008, I'm thinking of adding scripting languages like Ruby. There are so many new possibilities out there and I am excited to jump in and learn something new that can help me.

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