Category Archives: work

Don’t just consume, create!

It’s a believe I have had for a while now, which it seems is widely shared. I read this post today by Jim Mitchem called “Consumption vs Creation” which echoes my belief:

In the end, you are what you consume. And if you’re not doing your share of creating, you’re like a vegetable soaking up the sun in preparation of one day being harvested. By advertisers.

Continue reading

Twitter kills productivity

Note: I was sent a link to by Able Parris. The site displays the top 10 URLs dynamically from ad/design/tech tweeters every 15 minutes. This could be the answer to those wanting to keep usage to a minimum, yet not miss out on the good stuff!

Could somebody just make an app to summarise every day what everyone I follow is talking about on Twitter?
Twitter is a passive consumption activity. If someone could condense all the best bits, and remove cat/food pictures, I’d be interested!
As brilliant as it is. Twitter kills productivity. No question. I think I’m going to try a week cold turkey during business hours.
Saying that, we should rename smoke breaks ‘social breaks’. That way we could hop onto Twitter and Facebook every so often during the day.

A couple of recent tweets that got me thinking about how we use Twitter (and Facebook).

Now I am a massive Twitter fan. My account was created over 4 years ago, and I have tweeted nearly 4000 times. I love using, but I do realise that it kills productivity. The issue is that Twitter is so real-time that you end up missing out on the good conversations when you catch up with it later on in the day. The interaction you get and the accessibility with members of the web community is something you just can’t get with email or IM. Everyone is so open and approachable on Twitter. That’s why I love it.

Having said that, sometimes the signal to noise ratio can be pretty high. With Instagram pics of cats, food, old signs and everything you care to name of it can be hard to find the nuggets in the masses of tweets. In the evening I tend to skim read about 200-300 tweets and favourite a fair few to read in more depth in the morning.

I follow some pretty prolific tweeters and I really have no idea how they manage to get any work done! But I guess they say everything in moderation, so I might try a ‘social break’ and pop on it a couple of times a day for 5 minutes.

I’ve never really asked this before, but I’m interested to find out other peoples Twitter habits, and how they manage their usage.

Language Agnostic Programming

Having coded in many languages, and recently when using MooTools instead of jQuery, i’ve come to realise that most actual programming is pretty language agnostic. What I mean is that most languages do the same thing, just very differently, but it is how you contruct your code that makes you a good programmer

Chances are, if you are good at jQuery you will be pretty good at MooTools (after learning the new declarations etc). The same goes for in a larger extent SQL/MySQL/Oracle or ASP/PHP/Ruby etc.

Continue reading


For a while now, my Twitter description has read like this:

A web designer and developer from the UK. I occasionally blog, frequently tweet and often procrastinate.

The last part couldn’t be more true. With RSS feeds, Twitter and other social media, lots of time can be spent keeping up-to-date and researching – but it really boils down to procrastinating (postpone doing what one should be doing).

With the immediacy of these social media, links can come in at any time, easily distracting you away from the current task in hand. Staying ‘in the zone’ can be hard with tweets popping up and other distractions such as IM, text messages and phone calls; chances are you are reading this when something more important needs to be done.

The Solution

Taking a dedicated hour out of your day to deal with these can help alleviate this. You’d be surprised how non-urgent reading your tweets are when you don’t do it for a few hours.

So turn off your Twitter client, IM and sign out of anything which could ‘pop-up’ during your day and give it a go, perhaps taking time out in the morning and afternoon to check-up and see what’s gone on in the real world and see if your productivity increases.