Coding on the 1s and 2s

Brother Ali: Mourning in America and Living in Color (at 33 1/3 RPMs)

I ended up working from home today. Even though I probably could have made it up the less-icy-than-expected hill our apartment is on by bike, I like working from home and the weather was a convenient excuse. I like it because my internet connecting is always surprisingly faster than dealing with the arms race-like environment of enterprise WiFi and I get to choose how much to interact with my co-workers and how much to focus.

One of my favorite parts of working form home is my turntable. At the office it’s really easy to sit for more than two hours with on my figeting in the desk chair for movement. I have Rdio on blast when I’m trying to ignore the din of my surroundings and to facilitate that developer hyperfocus we all know and maybe love. At home, I have Rdio too, and I have my full iTunes library which is cool. But I also have a turntable that forces me to get up and stretch my legs once every 22ish minutes. I also get to listen to the same artist for a stretch.

The timesavings are probably negligible. On the one hand records don’t buffer and playback isn’t beholden to someone else’s UI decisions. But the time spent on those things is balanced (or possibly overtaken) by gawking at the record collection looking for the next sheet of vinyl to spin. But the real advantage is in taking my eyes off of my screen for a few minutes a couple times an hour. I pop on the record and by the time side A ends I’ve either been productive or gone down a rabbit hole. If the former, I get a break to digest what I did before transitioning to the next thing; if the latter, I get a chance to rescue myself. Either way, I get a brief mode switch. Flip the record and repeat.

I can’t work from home everyday, nor do I really want to. In light of that,
I’m hoping to find a way to recreate this cadence at the office.