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Tech Productivity

Issue #69  (Information Overload (1989)) 06/08/20

I recently stumbled across an old Los Angeles Times article called Information Overload : What To Do When Anxiety Cripples You, that's fortunately been archived online. How old is the article? January 22, 1989!

Information Overload
Information overload, a problem in 1989, is even more true today.
Despite the poor formatting due to it being transferred from print, the whole thing is worth a read. Here are some interesting quotes:
  • "Information anxiety is produced by the ever-widening gap between what we understand and what we think we should understand."
  • "We are ... made anxious by the fact that our access to information is often controlled by other people. We are dependent on those who design information, on the news editors and producers who decide what news we will receive."
  • "Accept that there is much you won’t understand. Let what you don’t know spark your curiosity."
  • "Rather than admit we don’t understand quantum mechanics, we nod our heads as if we were intimately familiar with the subject... This only prevents us from learning and exacerbates our suspicion that everyone else knows more than we do."
While some of the technical discussions in the article are out of date (e.g. VCRs that are returned because people were having trouble learning how to use them), the overall message and the suggestions are pretty relevant even today.

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

Tools & Apps

Timefibers - Tracks exactly how you spend your time on your digital devices. Everything you do is automatically categorized so you can quickly see the time you spend on specific apps, websites, and projects and gauge your daily productivity.

Readwise - Makes it easy to revisit and learn from your ebook and article highlights. Sync your highlights from Kindle, Instapaper, or iBooks and review the best parts easily through a daily email and app.

Supermind - Learn better with spaced repetition on the web using a browser extension and cards that you create, integrated into your new tab page.

ChronoBook - A minimalist daily planner for iPad and Apple Pencil where each day is represented in AM and PM and you plan your activities around the clock, make notes, sketches and scribbles.

Remotion - A Quick video chat and screen sharing app for Mac for remote teams.

Articles & Resources

5 Rituals for More Productive, Creative, and Resilient Teams - Describes some exercises for getting people to perform at their best in creative environments where change is constant.

Self-Competition: Only Compete With Your Past Self - Competition can breed success, but this article puts forth the argument that competing with yourself is more productive than competing with others.

How To Prepare For Losing Your Programming Job - Some advice, in the form of a plan, for those whose jobs might be at risk during the current recession or in the future.

Want to Be More Productive? Try Doing Less. - Not exactly the advice you normally hear but, in my opinion, this is fairly obvious once it's broken down.

Tips for Time Management and Working from Home - If you're suddenly working remotely, it can be a big disruption. Here are some tips that can help you stay both effective and healthy while working from home.


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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