Category Archives: review

Weekly review: Week ending December 12, 2014

This was a good week for programming and packaging. On my consulting gig, I got back into the swing of making small prototypes on the social business platform we use. I’ve been practising writing short Javascript functions, and they make my brain much happier. I also coached the other developer on our team over lots of instant messages and a few WebExes, and she’s picking up things nicely. I made progress on an annoying bug that has been plaguing us for a few months, too.

I’ve been working on getting more stuff out the door, too. I packaged the Emacs Chat transcripts as an EPUB/MOBI and sorted out a good workflow for publishing them. (Come to think of it, I should consider making a PDF version too.) While sketching a book, I noticed that “sketched book” is a fun way to refer to those visual book notes; since the domain was available, I registered sketchedbooks.com and set it up.

I want to get the hang of publishing things in chunks that are larger than a blog post. Collections are easy to start with. The next step would be to work on things with outlines and chapters and flows.

My energy’s slowly starting to return, yay! Slept more than normal – average of 9.3 hours a day – but that was because I was in bed for about 17 hours (!) last Sunday. I should be back to my regular ~8.3 hours of sleep a night soon.

Blog posts

Sketches

Link round-up

… good haul this week. =)

Focus areas and time review

  • Business (34.5h – 20%)
    • Earn (17.5h – 50% of Business)
      • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
      • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (13.1h – 38% of Business)
      • Drawing (7.7h)
        • Sketch JFS book
        • Make cover image
      • Paperwork (0.3h)
        • Actually submit tax return
      • Packaging
        • Format Emacs Chat transcripts as EPUB and sort out Org to EPUB workflow
        • Set up mailing list for sketchedbooks.com
        • Set up sketchedbooks.com – temporary site for now
        • Set up proper redirection so that I can do clever things with the URLs
        • Figure out EPUB workflow for publishing Emacs Chat transcripts
        • Set up EPUB workflow for Read Lisp, Tweak Emacs
      • Set up Authenticator
      • Set up app password so I can read Gmail from Gnus again
      • Fix OAuth login for Google – Quantified Awesome
      • Add Javascript for locating a blog post in my outline
      • Clean up disk space
      • Re-enter comments into Disqus
    • Connect (3.9h – 11% of Business)
  • Relationships (7.3h – 4%)
    • Chat with Sahil Sinha
  • Discretionary – Productive (18.3h – 10%)
    • Emacs (4.4h – 2% of all)
      • Finish transcript for Emacs chat
      • Revise transcript for Iannis Zannos
      • Revise transcript for Emacs Chat: Karl Voit
      • Patch https://github.com/jwiegley/use-package to mention :ensure t
    • Writing (10.1h)
      • Write about skewed notes
  • Discretionary – Play (6.6h – 3%)
  • Personal routines (29.9h – 17%)
  • Unpaid work (6.5h – 3%)
  • Sleep (64.9h – 38% – average of 9.3 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending December 5, 2014

A combination of being mostly asleep and feeling out of sorts meant that I ended up writing this review on Tuesday instead of Sunday, but I’m backdating it so that it falls into its rightful place in the endless march of posts.

It was a good week, though! I had a great Emacs chat with Karl Voit, picking up lots of ideas for Org Mode and knowledge management. I sketchnoted a book and experimented with colour schemes. I learned more about network analysis and visualization. I helped people on my consulting gig. I made Japanese curry from scratch (I think I’ve pretty much gotten the hang of that recipe). I finished reading the Minna no Nihongo I textbook out loud, and am now looking for a good source for the second set of books.

One of my personal projects fizzled out, but oh well. C’est la vie. Can’t learn unless you take risks. Anyway, the next few weeks should have better momentum!

Blog posts

Sketches

Link round-up

Focus areas and time review

  • Business (24.6h – 14%)
    • Earn (6.8h – 27% of Business)
      • Prepare invoice for E1
      • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (15.0h – 60% of Business)
      • Drawing (10.6h)
        • Collect and catalogue different colour techniques
        • Try different approaches for colouring sketchnotes
          • Accent text
          • Background
          • Flood
          • Decorations
          • Toned text
          • Form an opinion about colour techniques
        • Colour “Inner Game of Work” sketchnote
      • Delegation (0.0h)
      • Packaging (0.0h)
      • Paperwork (1.4h)
        • Actually submit tax return
        • Revisit accounting changes
        • Review CRA message
      • Quantified Awesome
        • Investigate library renewal error
        • Review pull request simplifying Quantified Awesome setup
        • Add deletes back
        • Doublecheck that I can add note fields to a record category
      • Blog
        • Add Javascript for locating a blog post in my outline
        • Modify WordPress theme so that TOC links use permalinks but still permit efficient scrolling
        • Draw Sketchnote Army Interview response
        • Figure out how to reimport comments into Disqus
        • Fix HTTP upload error on my blog
    • Connect (2.8h – 11% of Business)
  • Relationships (1.4h – 0%)
    • Make gift
  • Discretionary – Productive (22.3h – 13%)
    • Emacs (3.1h – 1% of all)
      • Emacs Chat: Karl Voit
      • Learn about edebugging macros
      • Revise transcript for Emacs Chat: Karl Voit
    • Japanese
      • Work through Minna no Nihongo I
      • Minna no Nihongo Chapter 21
      • Minna no Nihongo Chapter 22
      • Minna no Nihongo Chapter 23
      • Minna no Nihongo Chapter 24
      • Minna no Nihongo Chapter 25
    • Writing
      • Revise post about prioritization based on Alan’s feedback
      • Sketch idea for blog link graph
      • Thinking about how to make better use of Yasnippet in my Emacs workflow
      • Visualize the connected components in my blog
    • Writing (12.6h)
  • Discretionary – Play (15.1h – 8%)
  • Personal routines (28.1h – 16%)
  • Unpaid work (12.2h – 7%)
  • Sleep (64.3h – 38% – average of 9.2 per day)

Monthly review: November 2014

I wrote last month that in November, I planned to:

  • Get team members up to speed with prototype designs and reporting tips
  • Experiment with Emacs hangouts and learn more about functionality
  • File my corporate tax returns
  • Dust off my delegation processes

I’m glad I invested time in writing things down, building standardized reports, and coaching team members, since I ended up spending November mostly working from home (whenever I wasn’t asleep).

We experimented with casual Emacs Hangouts and those were awesome. I hosted the first one and Cameron Desautels hosted the second one. Great way to pick up tips and hang out with folks. I’m looking forward to doing more of them in December and in 2015.

I filed my corporate tax returns, yay! This year, I learned how to file HST using the quick method (which isn’t really all that quick), and I also found a bookkeeper who could help me answer some of my tax questions. Nice to get the paperwork out of the way.

Delegation-wise, I continue to be really bad at assigning tasks to my virtual assistants. On my consulting engagement, though, I’m getting better at asking team members to do stuff (providing notes and help along the way) instead of giving in to the temptation to have fun doing things myself.

I also learned more about building flexible reports using Tableau and PostgreSQL, wireframing before implementing, testing. I picked up Minna no Nihongo and started working my way through it. I learned how to make a really simple LEGO ball contraption. I mentored a young developer. I dealt with fuzzy brain, squirrel brain, and other challenges, and I figured out a few things that work well for me. (Getting things ready for good-brain time, for example.)

Also, having a process journal is great! I updated each entry by summarizing it in the headline, and now I can look at my date outline and get a quick sense of how the month went. =) Pretty well, actually, despite having lower energy than usual.

In December, I plan to:

  • Continue helping my consulting client with prototyping and analytics
  • Dive into Emacs improvement
  • Help out with family projects
  • Do a calendar-year annual review

Blog posts:

Sketches:

Time:

% Avg h per week Avg h per day
Sleep 41.3 69.4 9.9
Personal care 14.4 24.2 3.5
Business 14.3 24.0 3.4
Discretionary – Play 9.0 15.1 2.2
Discretionary – Productive 9.4 15.8 2.3
Discretionary – Family 6.5 10.9 1.6
Unpaid work 5.0 8.4 1.2

I’m trying a new thing in this review – I’m also using it to mark items for follow-up, like sketches that haven’t been blogged yet (0% this month, yay!) or actions to take. We’ll see if this helps me build momentum and connect the threads!

 

Weekly review: Week ending November 28, 2014

Okay! My brain is slowly returning to normal, I think. =) I might even be able to drop by my consulting clients again, go to meetings, and do other things like that. We’ll see.

Lots of writing time, a fair bit of coding (both for work and for personal projects), and family time too. Some geeking around with W-. It felt like I got a lot done even though I still spent about 40% of the week asleep (average of 10 hours). Yay!

Blog posts

Sketches

Link round-up

Focus areas and time review

  • Business (22.0h – 13%)
    • Earn (14.7h – 66% of Business)
      • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
      • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (4.0h – 18% of Business)
      • Drawing (2.5h)
      • Delegation (0.0h)
      • Packaging (0.0h)
      • Paperwork (0.0h)
      • Quantified Awesome
        • Add deletes back
        • Deploy kitchen branch
        • Doublecheck that I can add note fields to a record category
        • Fix bug in saving notes
        • Investigate library renewal error
        • Fix Quantified Awesome registration process
      • Upgrade WordPress to 4.0.1
    • Connect (3.3h – 14% of Business)
      • Emacs Chat: Karl Voit
  • Relationships (5.3h – 3%)
    • Work on E
    • Set up file sharing on router
    • Go to Hacklab general meeting?
  • Discretionary – Productive (18.7h – 11%)
    • Emacs (0.0h – 0% of all)
      • Learn about edebugging macros
    • Writing (17.8h)
  • Discretionary – Play (26.1h – 15%)
  • Personal routines (20.2h – 12%)
  • Unpaid work (4.1h – 2%)
  • Sleep (71.6h – 42% – average of 10.2 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending November 21, 2014

Wow, did I ever get a lot of sleep last week. Fortunately, I’ve been able to turn over all my responsibilities, and I’ve given myself permission to take it easy. I’m rarely under the weather like this, and it’s an interesting learning opportunity for dealing with variable energy and short attention spans. The blog has been coasting thanks to the posts that I wrote a week or two ago, but since I still do manage to learn something here and there, I’ll see how many posts I can squeeze in to remind me of stuff that I may want to think about later or that other people might find useful. =)

I still managed to do a little bit of consulting here and there, thanks to the wonders of working from home. =) This week, I discovered that recursive queries in PostgreSQL (WITH RECURSIVE) are actually a pretty fast way of traversing an organizational chart described as an adjacency list. I also wireframed a prototype so that one of the other developers can work on it, but she’ll probably need a little more help before she’s ready to take that on. I’m getting better at asking people to do things instead of giving into the temptation to have all the fun myself!

We’ll keep things loose. I’ll try to take notes along the way. =)

Blog posts

Link round-up

Focus areas and time review

  • Business (14.4h – 8%)
    • E1: Plan how I can work from home for the next few weeks
    • Read AngularJS documentation
    • Review bookkeeper feedback for tax return
    • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Earn (6.8h – 46% of Business)
    • Build (7.6h – 53% of Business)
      • Drawing (2.3h)
      • Delegation (0.0h)
      • Packaging (0.0h)
      • Paperwork (2.4h)
    • Connect (0.0h – 0% of Business)
  • Relationships (20.2h – 12%)
    • Work on E
    • Follow up on insurance paperwork
    • Work on E
  • Discretionary – Productive (2.6h – 1%)
    • Emacs (0.0h – 0% of all)
    • Writing (0.0h)
  • Discretionary – Play (15.6h – 9%)
  • Personal routines (26.8h – 15%)
  • Unpaid work (4.8h – 2%)
  • Sleep (83.6h – 50% – average of 11.9 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending November 14, 2014

I’m going to be out of commission for the next little while, probably resurfacing sometime late December. I’ve scheduled lots of posts in advance (I learned a lot over the past two weeks!), so you’ll still keep reading stuff, but I might be even slower to respond to things and I’ll probably stay close to home. Nothing to worry about, just something I have to take care of. Good thing there’s enough slack in my life for stuff like this.

Blog posts

Sketches

Focus areas and time review

  • Business (23.2h – 13%)
    • Earn (9.3h – 39% of Business)
      • E1: Plan how I can work from home for the next few weeks
      • Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (8.4h – 36% of Business)
      • Set up faster searching with ace-jump, isearch, helm-swoop
      • Drawing (1.4h)
      • Delegation (0.0h)
      • Packaging (0.0h)
      • Paperwork (1.5h)
        • Review bookkeeper feedback for tax return
    • Connect (5.5h – 23% of Business)
      • Coach Lucas on programming
  • Relationships (16.4h – 9%)
    • Follow up on insurance paperwork
  • Discretionary – Productive (15.9h – 9%)
    • Emacs (0.3h – 0% of all)
    • Quantified Awesome
      • Add want interface for groceries
      • Fix edit screen
      • I can restore an item
      • I can clear all crossed-off items
      • I can see when it was last synchronized
      • Our lists are synchronized
    • ER for I2
    • Cancel GICs
    • File insurance claims
    • Find a Japanese plain past tense practice tool
    • Find a Tableau e-book and put it on my laptop/tablet
    • Find an e-book for learning Japanese and put it on my laptop & tablet
    • Go through a Jasmine tutorial
    • Go through a QUnit tutorial
    • Minna no Nihongo Chapter 13-16
    • Move my dentist appointment
    • Set up folder synchronization for my tablet
    • Write about beginner steps for testing
    • Writing (7.5h)
  • Discretionary – Play (12.9h – 7%)
  • Personal routines (24.5h – 14%)
  • Unpaid work (4.5h – 2%)
  • Sleep (70.7h – 42% – average of 10.1 per day)