Sunday, January 08, 2006

Three productivity boosters

A few of my current favorite productivity boosters:
  1. Subversion - With CVS, I wasted a lot of time fretting about file names and directory structures, because it was such a pain having to muck with the repository when I changed my mind. I ended up not being able to prototype nearly as rapidly because I spent time trying to plan the overall structure of my code. Sometimes I'd even give up and go off to work on something else. With Subversion I just blithely give things whatever name and directory structure suits me at the moment and keep working.
  2. Voo2do - This is the best task-list and project management software I've found online so far. It's got the right features and no more: I can give tasks a name, an associated project, and optionally a priority, a deadline, and notes; then I can create custom views over a particular set of projects. And that's about it. Now I'm keeping all of my to-do lists for everything in one place. Since I've been in grad school, I've found I do a lot of task-switching between my various jobs, so being able to keep all my tasks listed in one place should help me maintain my priorities not just in the context of one job but amongst all of them.
  3. Procmail - You've just gotta keep separate folders for emails from separate projects.
The name of the game appears to be unobtrusiveness of the technology (K.I.S.S.), a high payoff-to-learning-curve ratio, and the ability to reorganize continuously.

I'm still on the lookout for good calendar software. Ideally online and compatible with Apple iCal.


Jon Raphaelson said...

Add and wikipedia for looking this up and we share this list.

By the way, you should post more ;) I may be one of only a few readers, but you tend to point out interesting things.

Dave Herman said...

Thanks! I try to post but it always takes longer to write than I expect, and damned if life doesn't just keep getting busier. :)

BTW, I use CiteULike instead of for collecting references, but same idea. As for Wikipedia, the set of good reference sites is too huge to include in this list.