[ Content | Sidebar ]

Archives for GTD

taking stock of time

Every so often, I get somewhat dissatisfied with an aspect of how I’m spending my time; these days, it generally involves rethinking the way small actions fill time. I’m in the middle of one of those periods right now; it was kicked off by me running into a thought-provoking article about (temporarily) quitting Twitter right […]

inboxes at work

Merlin Mann’s Back to Work podcast recently did a five-part series on GTD (starting with episode 95); good to have an excuse to think about that again, to have my eyes opened to ways in which I can improve my GTD practice. One thing which particularly struck me while listening to the series was the […]

worries as inventory: bug trackers, lean, and gtd

At Agile Open Northern California 2012, I led a session titled “Worries as Inventory: Bug Trackers, Lean, and GTD”. I put up my notes on the conference wiki, but I’m reproducing them here for archival purposes as well. Many thanks to the people who participated in the session, they did a wonderful job of getting […]

bug trackers are anti-agile (though less anti-gtd)

Once again, I find myself at a job that uses bug-tracking software (JIRA this time, as in my previous job; the job before that used Bugzilla); once again, I’m finding that the bug-tracking software gets on my nerves. And, it turns out, gets on my nerves specifically because of ways in which that software seems […]

time to read

As is doubtless clear from this blog, for the last several years most of my time interacting with art has been spent with video games. And that’s been wonderful, no question. What is less clear from this blog, however, is the extent to which that wasn’t always the case: while I’ve played video games regularly […]

getting things done introductory talk

I gave an introductory talk on Getting Things Done at work this week; here are the slides, in case anybody else would like to see them. I also have a PDF version of the slides that includes a few speaker’s notes.

getting (lots of) things done

As I’ve said before, GTD isn’t actually about getting lots of things done: it’s about doing what you most want to do at any given moment. Having said that, ever since I stopped putting tasks on my Next Action list that are more than two weeks out, I have in fact been Getting Things Done. […]

on snark

Meandering on from the discussion on forms of responses from a couple of months ago: my tolerance for snark has gone down markedly over the last few years. And it’s not just snark: it’s responses that, in whatever fashion, have as their substance “you are wrong, I am right, and I am going to focus […]

task control gtd

For whatever reason, I’ve been playing a fair amount of Flight Control HD this week, and it’s reminded me of my current attempt to get my next action list under control. In both cases, there are a bunch of items (tasks, planes) that you’d like to take care of, with new ones appearing all the […]

getting my next action list under control

One checklist item when starting my new job was setting up a new Things installation. (I have separate work and home installations, with the home one synced to my iPhone.) And, most of a couple of months in, the differences between the two are pretty striking: my Next Action list at work is a lot […]


When I started doing GTD, I kept my next action list on a paper notebook in my pocket. (Or, at work, on a pad of paper on my desk.) I did this partly out of a certain technological conservatism and partly because, at the time, I didn’t have any suitable electronic devices that were always […]


So far, the talk I attended at Agile 2009 that has had the most impact on me was Renzo Borgatti’s talk on the pomodoro technique: I’d heard a bit about the technique before, enough to know that it tells you to break your work up into 25 minute chunks and to try to really focus […]

change of scene

One of the GDC sessions I attended this year was a charming panel discussion including, among other people, Steve Meretzky of Infocom fame. Which got me curious what he was up to these days—I don’t generally expect people from that era to still be active in the game industry—and was pleasantly surprised to find out […]

explaining my choices

I periodically encounter discussions of why people play games (most recently in A Life Well Wasted), and I’ve been getting more and more allergic to such talk. The main reason is that it almost always comes in the form of claims that “we play games to have fun” (with a strong implication that anybody who […]

change of focus

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been finding enough unusual projects imposing on my time that I think I’m going to have to shuffle my priorities, albeit temporarily. I’ve been wanting to do more programming at home than normal recently: aside from improving the memory project, I want to spend a bit of time getting […]

inbox zero and technical debt

About 10 minutes into a talk he gave at the Philadelphia library, David Allen says: A lot of it was based upon my experience getting a black belt in karate. … One of the things you need to learn is the strategic value of clear space. Trust me, when four people jump you in a […]

too organized?

There’s been a lot of discussion of clean code over the last few weeks in mailing lists and blogs that I read: see e.g. this post by Ron Jeffries. Which set up an interesting resonance with this paragraph that I ran across today in David Allen’s latest GTD book: Can you be too organized? Not […]

the j/p split

Today is a warmup tutorial for AYE; the morning session ended with a discussion of Meyers-Briggs personality types. What struck me the most this time was the discussion of the J/P split. This split is related to how you act: the J side (judging, scheduling) likes to have a plan and lists, while the P […]

weekly reviews

One aspect of GTD that has surprised me is the weekly review. The idea here is that, once a week, you go over all your projects (and their associated tasks) and all your someday/maybe items, to make sure that your current projects are all on track and that your current projects are what you think […]

gtd and standardized work

One thing which I was expecting to find in the GTD book, but didn’t, was some sort of version of Standardized Work. This is an idea that I’ve seen in lean: it says that, if there’s a task that you do repeatedly, you should write down the best way you know of to do that […]