Archive for April, 2013


I’m Always Thinking…

Do you have a million good ideas?  I mean literally a million, or if not that many then at least a whole lot of ideas that just fill your brain with ecstasy?  I know that I do, and I absolutely love it.  It is probably one of the things that I will always un-shamefully love about about myself.  But there is a dark side to it as well…

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Have you ever felt disgusted with yourself?  Yes, you and I have all these amazing ideas, and what do we have to show for it?  I have tried many times to get in the habit of always writing my ideas down, because I know that they have a very short shelf life.  And if you have lost an idea and trying to think it back up, I can almost guarantee you will not retrieve it in its full splendour.

I had written the idea of a YouTube series that I would start about just the journey of attempting to be successful.  It would be really cool.  I wrote it down in some detail… Then forgot about it…well not really it was always in my mind, more and more ideas about it came to my mind.  But I decided it was alright I will start on it in a month or two.  Then one day as I was cleaning up my mess of a would be office in the basement I found the notes.  IT WAS MORE THAN A YEAR that I had these awesome ideas and I had not done a single thing for it! 

I felt gross about myself, and for good reason.  No matter how great of an idea that I have, it means nothing because it was not acted upon.  Enter the Matthew Effect, I have been in ruts for ideas since I have not used the great ones I have had.

There are some fantastic articles on Lifehacker that helped me really get the sting and the importance of this concept.

http://lifehacker.com/stop-waiting-on-your-ideas-and-get-them-out-the-door-no-476459071

http://paidtoexist.com/why-you-need-to-start-now-infographic/

http://lifehacker.com/seeking-inspiration-stop-looking-and-start-doing-476417146

Another side of the coin is that I do not want to become one of those people that I loathe… The idea guy (or gal).  The person who will walk through an idea and get all excited and when you ask them how they will do it… they shrug and say, “Someone else will do it for me…I am the idea guy…”  I almost want to slap them right then and there.

As of this post I am re-committing to acting on ideas and ceasing the trap of procrastinating and day dreaming that something good might come of just having an idea and not acting on it.  Will you do the same?

P.S. Here are some of the YouTube videos I have attempted to make.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=HlalLOGm6yU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=gNogs4_2Nn0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=85otWbzOb-Y

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=IbhhwwE0cpo

I have never enjoyed learning and experimenting with technology than I did when I was in a Linux User Group in Utah.  When we actually meet up and discussed why Open Source and Free Software were important.  What programs we each liked to use.  The history that we had as little hackers breaking our parents computers and so on.

so_social

I have never reached the same level of satisfaction from online social interaction, despite the topics or the memories or what have you.  I will endeavor not to beat this dead horse, cause everyone laments that Social Media is not social and it makes us closed off to the world and so on.  But I will just express my experiences and thoughts as I have waded through all of this.

When I was a younger teenager I would chat on ICQ…I can still hear all the little sound bites that alert you of messages.  That may have been the beginning of the downward spiral of negative affects of Social Media…because I could not communicate as openly with a girlfriend face to face as I could chatting through ICQ.

In my experience if you want something done, Social Media is the last place to go.  If you want to go out to dinner or a movie with a friend…I guess you could make a post…but all those kind of posts seem to not get the wanted response…just frivolous questions and then saying they sadly cannot make it.

Social Media has not turned the internet into the romanticized version of the internet we thought it would be in 1995.  I love the movie Hackers….where hackers unite and change street lights and what not.  But when you have a question or a project it gets very little attention for the most part.  If you are a programmer and need help, I think the best thing is to use Stack Overflow: http://stackoverflow.com/

Sometimes you can sell stuff…

My desire is that we keep using Social Media and get a lot of enjoyment out of it, but let’s hang out and see each others faces…a lot of search that I am sure you can Google says that you will feel better if you do!

Just think of what Social Media offers you, a quick little interaction to feel that you still exist to acquaintances…do you want to spend your whole day on that?

With technology I believe that you have all you need to excel.  And perhaps if you have a little less then you are forced to be creative and still excel as much as the next guy.

apple-ipod-30-gb-black-5-5g

My favorite example is when I was going to community college and working a graveyard job.  There was a lot of content to remember from a human anatomy class and there was no way that I could do it.  But earlier I had taken the plunge and got a 30 gig iPod (this was well before the iPhone) and I also splurged on a add on recorder.  So I recorded the lectures and then listened to them while at work (when I could).

There are a lot of ways that you can use the simple and free technologies that are available to you to excel in whatever endeavor that you might have.  Below I have some examples that I have done…be careful though, I have fallen into the trap of spending too much time creating these and not really using them.  If it is more important to learn the thing you are formatting into technology, then give yourself a time limit and then use what you have made or formatted even if it is not perfect or pretty!

– Using Smartphone notes to memorize something
If you need to memorize something by reading then the notes app on your phone is perfect.  Don’t over complicate it, just type in the note, or email the note to yourself and copy and paste…then simply look, read aloud, and repeat.

– Using audio recordings to memorize something or reprogram yourself
Your brain is an amazing thing…but it works in its own way.  Repetition is the best way for the brain to retain something…Oh but you are so busy and have no time.  Well you drive or walk places, you listen to endless radio and whatever you may have on your iPod.  Record something that you want to retain and be able to recall and listen to that over and over again.

– Creating your own website with things to remember and information you want readily available
When I start a new job there is a ton to remember and in this fluctuating job market your employer wants you to learn it quickly and be competent ASAP!  At a few different jobs I have created myself a website with links to task and their explanation or processes.  Also part names and numbers, contacts, and even some javascript for making a custom item that the company sells!
See: Having and Internal Website https://hartsoffice.wordpress.com/2012/06/29/having-an-internal-website/

– Use Smartphone, computer, portable apps, spreadsheets and other programs to map and maintain you life or career
Portable apps are a Godsend if you are around a lot of Windows machines and need to have the same browser with the same settings and many other apps that are good for the student, the web programmer or even the gamer!  Check out their site: http://portableapps.com/

These are just some of my ideas, be as creative as you like, but also make sure to focus your creativity like a laser beam to get the most benefit  this blog post series is all about the discipline!