Tech Clean-Up Week, Here I Come!

Tech Clean-UpPost-Flu, I now face enough work to nearly make me unwell again! I am behind on email, blog posts, comments, responses, feedback, and rss feeds (again). So, time for another Clean-Up! This time, a bit more ambitious . . .

Here is my goal–by the end of this week (meaning by Friday at 5:00 pm!), I will achieve Inbox Zero in all my email accounts, reply to all posts, comments, and the like.

This will be a busy week, but starting with a tangible (and specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely) goal that will completely energize me by the end is a great way to begin a Monday.

First focus? My NYU email account.

Have to go, some responses that need my attention . . .

Multitasking, Meet the Flu

My multitasking met its match this week, when I finally left work a bit early on Friday with a case of the flu. I could not keep anything down, had a temperature of over 100, and with weakness so quick and intense that it took me nearly 20 minutes to struggle walking the 3 blocks from the train, it had all the symptoms of the flu. All the symptoms except it did not last the 3 to 5 days I remember.

I got the flu shot, and believe that is the reason why it was not as severe as it was in my early 20’s, when I lived alone and was unable to get out of bed for 5 days.

What is the lesson for multitasking? Well, quite frankly, it stops. All the plans I had for replying to my students’ blogs and forum posts? Stopped. Working with the class I am taking? Halted. Preparing to turn a peer-reviewed abstract into a full paper? No chance. Consulting? Forget it. Work, play, walking the dogs, reading? None of them. The flu, and anything unforeseen, ruins all of the overplanning we do. Multitasking stops completely. Even this posting itself is being done from my BlackBerry while recovering upstate by the fire with the snow gently falling outside.

The lesson? In finally being able to think a bit more clearly after being in a fog for days, I am wondering if multitasking and planning every last moment of available time leaves no time and energy for the unplanned.

Perhaps this is something I should, ironically, begin to plan for?

Focusing on Friends (vs. unfriending)

The New York Times (yes, I enjoy reading a paper newspaper in the morning over coffee) has an interesting article today, Friends, Until I Delete You. It was about protocols, or the lack thereof, regarding dropping / unfriending / blocking / unfollowing / defriending people on Facebook (and by default even on Twitter, my primary networking hub, as well as rss feeds and blogrolls). Getting a free Whopper from Burger King aside, this issue will only grow in discussion as the general trend toward Managing Multimembership increases.

I used to accept all invitations, though find it increasingly difficult to keep up and communicate with the people who I am really interested in following and engaging in ongoing discussions. Currently, I do not accept all invitations in Facebook or even return following in Twitter. Let’s face it, if I have not spoken to somebody since high school or college or for ten years, is there much evidence I really want to suddenly start now? There are often reasons why we lose touch (as well as some good reasons for begining again, I suppose).

I often do accept if the person appears interesting, but tastes and needs and wants do change and develop over time. 

Don’t get me wrong, this issue is not necessarily a personal one; it is more a recognition that I have limited time and resources. I am simply not able or interested in following or reading people who, ultimately, do not meet the WIIFM? (What’s In It For Me?) factor.  Very subjective, but then again what isn’t? (Ahh, I love qualitative research!)

I wish I have more time and energy, but there is a limit. Thus, instead of my own focusing on particulars about unfriending, I prefer to focus on following those who really make a difference in my life, work,  and research.

WordPress “Press This” via the BlackBerry

I have blogged several times about my desire and struggle to be able to create blog posts from my BlackBerry. I am not satisfied with Postie or the built-in emailable blog posting capability of WordPress. Too many delays and punctuation and formatting issues to make them reliable solutions.

However, I think I may have found a solution in the recently upgraded WordPress 2.7 “Press This” feature.

Press This is a shortcut bookmark feature to save on a browser for fast blog postings when on a web page of interest. Instead of saving it to my desktop browser, I saved the link to my BlackBerry browser. I opened the bookmark on my phone, was given the most basic posting options, and this post is the result. Press This allows me to post directly to my blog without opening my blog’s full admin screen (which does not open on my BlackBerry due to all the coding and features there).

This is my second post using Press This, and I wanted to share this success with anybody out there who is also struggling to post to a WordPress blog from a BlackBerry.

Doodle Gets a .com!

doodle Congratulations to Doodle, my favorite free meeting scheduling and online polling site; they just got their .com address!

While this may not seem like a major step, the company is a Swiss firm that is increasingly international in scope; so much so that it appears it realized it had to have a .com domain name. With this, Doodle will undoubtedly become more widespread and accepted by an American audience (especially as their previous website was the somewhat difficult to remember

I have yet to see a faster and easier meeting scheduling website, and already use it for collaborative international synchronous meetings, as well as finding times for my online class to meet when we needed to change a live meeting day. As I started to use and rely on Doodle for scheduling over the past few months that I have been using it, I wish all those involved with it the best for their success.