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Tech Productivity

Issue #94  (Memorize Faster With Spaced Repetition) 11/30/20

An organization called IZA recently published a study called Time of Day, Cognitive Tasks and Efficiency Gains, which you can read in PDF form at that link. It's pretty lengthy, but below are a few quotes from the intro/summary.

IZA - Time of Day, Cognitive Tasks and Efficiency Gains

"We study the performance of University students taking at most one exam per day in the final two weeks of the semester ... We find that peak performance occurs around lunchtime (1.30pm), as compared to morning (9am) or late afternoon (4.30pm)."

"... efficiency gains of up to 0.14 standard deviations can be achieved through simple re-arrangements of the time of exams."

"A simple back of the envelope calculation applied to an external context
that is likely to benefit from our results, elective surgeries, suggests that a different sorting of the cognitive tasks performed by surgeons may lead to an increase in the number of patients saved."

That last quote is pretty heavy, but I would also take this whole study with a grain of salt simply because students doing exams isn't exactly the same as surgeons doing surgery. So I'm a little skeptical – but it's an interesting study nonetheless.

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


Tools & Apps

Yummy - Mac app to download videos, music, or both from any website and instantly export to the format you want.

Apache OpenMeetings - Video conferencing, instant messaging, white board, collaborative document editing, and other groupware tools, from Apache Software.

InstaNote - iOS or Android app. Send notes to your future self. Add notes in a simple, chat-like interface. Save audio, images, documents, or simply journal your thoughts.

BlobBackup - Simple backups to any storage. Securely and efficiently backup your computer, external drive, or NAS to storage you own. Supports Windows, Mac, Linux and all major storage options.

Logseq - A privacy-first, open-source platform for knowledge sharing and management.

Cubbit Personal Cloud - Sync, store, and share your files with Cubbit Cloud. Enjoy the highest security standards of zero-knowledge encryption and forget about monthly fees for the cloud storage space! Spoiler: there’s a big discount dedicated to this newsletter's readers!   promoted  

Articles & Resources

Attention Is My Most Valuable Asset for Productivity as a Software Developer - Zachary Betz's advice on how to improve our distraction-heavy work days.

On Taking Criticism - There's nothing more discouraging in work than being criticized. David Kopec has some advice on how to handle it.

How to Memorize Faster With The Spaced Repetition Learning Technique - The alternative to last-minute studying (often done by students) is using a method that has longevity.

Essential Meaningful Productivity - Leo Babauta believes our productivity should be more than just the end result, but the experience itself.

Strategies I Used to 5x My Income As a Software Developer - This is the outline of the author's upcoming book, but the outline itself is still pretty informative and might have some useful suggestions.


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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