It's even worse than it appears..
Back in the day, many of the early writing tools were called Word-something. WordStar, Microsoft Word, WordPerfect. #
I wrote four posts on just before midnight. Probably some of the ideas will appare on Scripting News before too long. #
  • On Bluesky, Andrew Hickey explains how hard it is for him to focus while construction is going on at his house. I recognize the problem. I had major work done on the roof of my house last summer, and lost focus for a good two months, even though I had rented office space and at times an AirBnb to get away from the chaos. It wasn't until the work was over that I was able to start to get back into my flow. #
  • In my work, I start pretty much at the same time every day, and I get a good five or six hours before it's time to do the next thing. The first hour is warming up. Then I go to the notes I left the night before about where I'm going next. By hour two, I'm not quite at my highest rate but getting there, by hours 3-5 I get monster stuff done, if I'm in a good groove. Hour six is iffy. All the while I'm taking short breaks to check email, tweets, whatever. All of it asynchronous. Waiting for my attention to be available, for a short period.#
  • After 5-6 hours of this, I'm wiped out.#
  • I can handle small interruptions, like a package delivery.#
  • But if it involves the front of my brain for any real amount of time, if I have to shift my attention elsewhere, boom, it all drops out of my head. It doesn't take much of a shift in attention to lose the whole thing, and basically have to start over the next day.#
  • Try to imagine a professional tennis player. Do they talk about anything other than tennis during the game. Not with any focus. I'm sure of it. Their attention is fully on the sport. Same deal with intellectual achievement. If you're doing something that few other people do well, you're not only doing the complex things, and require multiple steps and a lot of detail, and memory, but you're sometimes inventing things that no one has done before. All the levels interact and affect each other. And you're doing a shitload of learning the whole time. Until you're burned out for the day that is. Or your deck gets shuffled. ;-)#
  • PS: People sending you emails saying how great your last thing was, they don't interfere at all. ;-)#
  • PPS: I wrote this post during one of my breaks. I won't edit it until the evening, when I do lite work that doesn't require much focus for any duration.#
  • Somewhat-related notes about different kinds of networks, ActivityPub and RSS, various twitter-like systems, as the social web spreads out and tries out new ideas.#
    • With ActivityPub you know who's following you and in RSS you don't. This may sound like a negative until you think about it from the user's standpoint: no spam, spyware, etc. Which is probably why Google didn't like RSS btw. #
    • It has been pointed out that some level of spying happens based on IP address, and I can testify to that, I get podcasts with ads for a local supermarket, kind of spooky but I guess ok. I can't recall ever receiving spam as a result of subscribing to a feed, and I never get messages from them when I unsub begging me to come back. So it isn't a huge problem in a real way at least for me, yet.#
    • I block spammers. In twitter-like systems, like Mastodon, spam means you attached a post to my post that is in no way responsive to it. You're just trying to coast on the flow generated by other posts. I don't abide that. Have a nice day.#

© copyright 1994-2024 Dave Winer.

Last update: Monday April 8, 2024; 9:24 AM EDT.

You know those obnoxious sites that pop up dialogs when they think you're about to leave, asking you to subscribe to their email newsletter? Well that won't do for Scripting News readers who are a discerning lot, very loyal, but that wouldn't last long if I did rude stuff like that. So here I am at the bottom of the page quietly encouraging you to sign up for the nightly email. It's got everything from the previous day on Scripting, plus the contents of the linkblog and who knows what else we'll get in there. People really love it. I wish I had done it sooner. And every email has an unsub link so if you want to get out, you can, easily -- no questions asked, and no follow-ups. Go ahead and do it, you won't be sorry! :-)