Thursday, January 26, 2012

Improving Programmer Productivity (Mind Map)

I would like to share with you my long term observations on how to improve programmer productivity as a mind map.

Here is the clickable picture, below there is the mind map in a form of nested lists:

Improving Programmer Productivity

  • Short-Term
    • General
      • Caffeine
        • Adjust to your blood pressure and blood vessel elasticity
        • Only green tea after 6pm if you have insomnia
        • Green tea
        • Black tea
        • Coffee
      • Sugar
        • Can lead to weight gain, most effective if consumed not very often in small amounts
    • Getting into the flow
      • No short attention span activities
        • At least in the morning
        • No news
        • No fun content sites
        • No tweets
      • Enjoyable long attention span activity
        • Reading a book
        • Playing a computer game that requires deep concentration
          • Only if you can stop after a reasonable amount of time
      • Doing nothing AKA Meditation
        • At least for 10 minutes
        • Really nothing, no thinking, no starring at the screen
    • Solving an inobvious problem
      • Moving away from computer
      • A walk
      • Playing drums, guitar
      • Shower
  • Long-Term
    • "Hardware"
      • Regular walks/ physical exercises
        • Expecially in the morning
      • Spine exercises
        • Warm-up from yoga (Surya Namaskara)
          • Can take only 10 minutes a day
      • Medicines improving blood flow in the brain
        • "Increases brain RAM"

          Details are hidden to avoid harm for light-headed people. Those who really care will find it and use wisely.

    • "Software"
      • Studing new programming languages and approaches.
        • Don't beleive popular opinions blindly, check them
      • Looking for good programmer resources (books, communities)
      • Mastering google queires
        • Know at least "site:", "~" operators, sorting by discussion type, limiting results by past year
      • Organizing
        • "Improves brain swapping"
        • TODO notes
          • Good with a paper and a pen

            TODO item must be possible to write down in a few seconds in order not to lose the main context in which you are.

            Rule of thumb: if a task requires more than half an hour it deserves to be written as TODO item

        • Leaving clues, marks when switching topics/ projects
          • TODO notes
          • Browser sessions
            • "Session Buddy" Chrome plugin
          • IDE sessions/ "project groups"/ "working sets"
          • Virtual machines
            • Con: Requires a lot of RAM
            • Pro: Remembers open programs and cursor placement in the code
    • "OS kernel"
      • Switch projects/ activities if you feel an upcoming burnout
      • Good psychotherapy for motivation problems and "unclear" states of the mind
        • Very underestimated
        • Easy to run up against inefficient or even harmful psychotherapy approaches
        • "Core Transformation" technique by Connirae Andreas
          • Great long tested first-hand and second-hand results
          • Requires a few evenings to study or visiting a workshop
          • Sharply contrasts with a lot of inefficient NLP techniques
          • Universal, leads to improvements in other life parts


Anonymous said...

I rally enjoy these productivity chart, map, mind map, essaie and books, but one thing that seems to always be missing is the sexual energy. I think it's different for everyone but for me when I need to be really creative and productive, a bit of sexual restraint goes a long way, while when feeing exhausted or emptied by sexual activities it's quite harder to focus.

I guess this is something I got from theatre and martial art training where the relation between sexual consumption and creativity/performance was quite often mention and talked about.

Sergey Didenko said...

damaru, I can't say the same based on my experience.

John said...

"Know at least "site:", "~" operators, sorting by discussion type, limiting results by past year"

Sorting by discussion type? Limiting results by past year? How do you do these?

Can you recommend resources online on how to search?

Sergey Didenko said...


google anything then

1) select "More" > "Discussions"
2) select "Search tools" > "Any time" > "Past year"

Try this for google search operators -

It's quite low level, if you want useful recipes you can start from my suggestions and then make some research on your own.