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Tech Productivity

Issue #241  (Managing Interruptions At Work) 09/25/23

Bytes: Your Favourite JavaScript Newsletter
I subscribe to a lot of newsletters, but this is definitely one I look forward to. Entertaining with lots of cool and useful coding tidbits and tools.

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In this discussion on Hacker News about how to develop focus, a commenter makes a good observation:
"We tend to have a habit of projecting what works for us, onto others." 

Specifically the user was talking about the advice to get up early and accomplish something before 8am. He pointed out his experience with a very productive developer who rarely came into the office before noon.

I completely agree with that sentiment. I am and always will be a night person. As I've gotten older I've found it a little harder to stay up late but I still find I'm most productive in late afternoon or early to late evening. That is, anything from 4PM to 2AM is pretty much my sweet spot.
Night worker on the computer

I'm also fine doing stuff around 10-11am or so, but if I do happen to wake up early and get things done, that just means I'll have to take a long nap in the middle of the afternoon if I want to be productive after 1pm. So it really doesn't matter if I wake up early or not — either way, I'm probably going to end up doing a bulk of the work in the evening or late afternoon.

But like the commenter said, this isn't going to be true for everyone. That's just me. I mean, I'm literally writing this newsletter at 1:44am the day it's getting scheduled to be sent out! I wouldn't recommend that for most, but it works for some.

Likewise with the advice to get stuff done before 8am. It probably does work for most people, but many (like me) will have trouble with it in the long haul.

Now on to this week's hand-picked productivity links!


Tools & Apps

Invoice — A CLI tool built in Go that lets you generate invoices in PDF format from the command line.

Notion Backups — A service to automate backups of your Notion workspaces, with support for Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon S3, and Backblaze B2.

Proton Pass — An open-source and encrypted password and identity manager that lets you generate and secure your passwords with end-to-end encryption.

Anytime Mailbox — Home-based business owners, it's time to upgrade to a private, professional address through Anytime Mailbox. Take charge of your mail on your terms, from any location and at any time. Get started with Anytime Mailbox today!     sponsor  

Stacks — Chrome extension that gives you smart recommendations for your searches by turning bookmarks into a personal and shared knowledge base, so your links are easy to find.

PDFTool — A client-side only, privacy-friendly PDF editor, installable as a PWA, that includes features to merge, encrypt, optimize, rotate, remove pages, split, sign, and more.

Keka — An open-source Mac file archiver that lets you compress files in various formats and encrypt them to store and share securely and with privacy.

Articles & Resources

Managing Interruptions At Work: What We Learned Surveying Hundreds of Rescuetime Users About Their Worst Distractions — A study of people using the popular Rescuetime software, with some numbers that consider the cost of interruptions along with some suggestions for improvements.

Yes, You Can Measure Software Developer Productivity — With access to richer productivity data and insights, leaders can begin to answer pressing questions about the software engineering talent they fought so hard to attract and retain.

Bytes: Your Favourite JavaScript Newsletter — I subscribe to a lot of newsletters, but this is definitely one I look forward to. Entertaining with lots of cool and useful coding tidbits and tools.    sponsor  

Don't Be Afraid To Be Wrong — The author believes being afraid is normal but it shouldn’t get in the way of getting things done, or getting you outside of your “comfort zone”, so that you can grow effectively.

Many People Feel They Work in Pointless, Meaningless Jobs, Research Confirms — Based on a study from a professor in Zurich University, Switzerland to see if it is true that people feel their jobs are socially useless and meaningless.

Ranked: The Cities with the Best Work-Life Balance in the World — In case you're considering a move. The top three are Copenhagen, Helsinki, and Denmark and there's not a single North American city in the top 25.

Goals, Values, and Productivity — Some have conflated goals and values (they're not the same thing). This article looks at their differences and how knowing this can help address our productivity problems.


Have a suggestion for a productivity-related tool, article, or other resource? Send me a direct message via X (@LouisLazaris) and I’ll consider including it in a future issue.

Stay productive!


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