Change (B)log

Week 4 Update - The Time Optimizations

February 01, 2019

I feel like another week has gone by and I haven’t done anything. But that’s a lie. My log shows me otherwise. (And at some point in the next month or two, I should be able to share specific numbers.)

Often, however, I’m surprised how busy I am “doing nothing.” I watch YouTube and Twitch videos before I go to bed and while I am eating at home. I also spend a lot of time mindlessly driving around grabbing food or going to work.

I don’t know where my time tracking totals stand yet but I do feel like I need to start making adjustments to my existing behaviors.

Regarding the Itch to Twitch

I enjoy vegging out watching people do awesome / entertaining things. Years ago, it was watching South Korean competitive StarCraft. Then it was basketball highlights. Now it’s mainly competitive Fortnite.

It is and was strangely awe-inspiring to watch the former StarCraft pro NesTea dominate a StarCraft match with some unique rush strategy, or watch Kyrie Irving dance around the floor with his mastery of ball-handling, or see Tfue against all odds survive to the end in a pro Fortnite skirmish only to defeat his last opponent with some effortless flick shot.

And while I can’t help but feel a little embarassed about admitting that these things are interesting to me, I don’t feel ashamed of it. But I do often regret the time I invest to witness these things. Mostly because by and large they do nothing to benefit me and my future. Or at least I haven’t figured out a way for them to benefit me yet.

So I’ll be spending my time while I eat or try to fall asleep watching interesting talks / demonstrations about technologies I’m using or interested in. Right now that’s mostly GraphQL and RPC frameworks. I’ll also be experimenting with the Freedom app to limit my distractions in addition to what I use already: DF Tube and News Feed Eradicator.

Regarding Driving

Driving consumes a lot of my time. But mainly what I don’t like about it is that my brain just idles during the drive. Some times I’ll listen to a comedian or musical artist, but mostly nothing.

What I’ve tried to do recently is use that time to think of questions that I’m going to be asking the people that I interview. The challenging aspect of that is getting my questions recorded / written down while in the car. The Android app I use to record me talking is easy to use but every time you want to use the microphone for something else (to send a text or log an entry in time tracking), you have to save and exit the program and create a new file when you want to talk again.

Ideally I’d have an app that’s easy to access and allows you to simply dump audio into logical bins that pertain to a subject. In other words, if I think of 3 questions for Person A then start a new audio segment of questions for Person B, I’d like the ability to later on that day dump random audio back to Person A’s bin. Then they would all be stored together. I could even hook them into my transcription pipeline and get all that data as text at a later point. I’ll have to investigate if that solution already exists or if it’s worth building if it does not exist.

Either way I’m going to try to use this car time to be more mentally active and productive.

Regarding Food

About 2 years ago, I started eating out for probably over 80% of my meals on average — simply because I didn’t enjoy cooking anymore and I could afford it.

And while Shakespeare’s Pizza, Chipoltle, and Seasoning 63’s authentic Chinese food aren’t exactly the healthiest foods, they’re better than many things that one could consume while eating out.

The health aspect doesn’t bother me as much as the time though. I spend a lot of time driving to go get food. (I can’t bring myself to have food delivered.)

In the past, I’ve experimented with Soylent (powdered food) and Eat Fit Go (bulk pre-cooked health foods) but Soylent wasn’t sustainable for me (after a few days, it get’s hard to choke down) and Eat Fit Go went out of business. Also, both options never left my stomach “satisfied and full”.

I haven’t decided what I’m going to do. I may try Factor 75 or another online solution or I may simply cook all of my food on Sunday in bulk. It would probably be healthier for me and save me time. I’ll think about it.

Wrapping Up

Jesus that was a lot of words! Hopefully that wasn’t a bore. That’s just a few things that have been on my mind recently.

In other news, I recently conducted two more interviews and posted those tonight: Jesse Pasley and Aaron Abernathy.

Until next week!


Joseph Weidinger

Written by Joseph Weidinger.