048: // TODO: Microwave ToDo List

Surgeons and pilots have known for years that checklists literally save lives. And, while programming is rarely a life-and-death stakes situation, the humble ToDo list continues to serve as a powerful tool in the developer toolbox. This week on the show, the crew talks about how they manage their ToDo lists using comments, software applications, and physical notebooks. And, while we each have our preferred methods of organization, it's clear that even in a predominantly digital world, there is something deeply satisfying about using pen-and-paper in our respective workflows.

"Let chaos reign; and then rein in the chaos." — Rich Armstrong

Note: We feel obliged to mention that NONE of the products mentioned in this episode in any way compensated us for discussing them. We mention products that we like only because we like them.

Notes & Links

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With audio editing and engineering by ZCross Media.


Spot an error? Send a pull request on GitHub.

[00:00:00] Tim: It's here's the rocket book wave.

[00:00:02] Carol: And the rocket book, fusion.

[00:00:04] Tim: Okay. Yeah. Don't put up microwave then.

[00:00:09] Adam: to know.

[00:00:10] Tim: For the microbiome, the rocket book wave. I was Googling this while you're talking, you actually do to erase it. You put it in the microwave

[00:00:16] Tim: for,

[00:00:17] Tim: yeah. You put it in and whack for a couple minutes and it will basically wipe all the ink off.

[00:00:21] Carol: that's really

[00:00:22] Carol: cool.

[00:00:23] Adam: Uh, and say, okay, so for taking my notes and to dues, I use an Etch-a-Sketch and then when I'm done, I just shake it.

[00:00:31] Intro

[00:00:31] Adam: okay, here we go. It is show number 48 and on today's show, we're going to talk about that super exciting topic to do lists, but first as usual, we're going to start with our triumphs and fails. And Tim, it's your turn to go first, man.

[00:01:03] Tim's Triumph

[00:01:03] Tim: I get to go first. Cool. So I'm going to go with the triumph. Carol knows this. So like at our company we do a strategy session. So like we get, the whole team together and we have like a departmental strategy session and it's my first time actually leading. One of these. Normally I've done it at a higher level while I'm part of it, but not actually running it.

[00:01:25] Tim: And I was pretty nervous about it because the people that we have some very charismatic people in the company that run these things. And, their whole death was their whole job to run strategy sessions for like companies all over. We have, we're part of a huge conglomeration of other software companies.

[00:01:38] Tim: And their job was to go from company to company and run a strategy session and I've seen how awesome they can be. so to have to run one myself was a bit daunting, but, it was pretty cool to actually do it. So to be able to get your entire team together and just say, 2022 is coming up. We want to say, what is our product roadmap going to be?

[00:01:57] Tim: everyone can contribute. There's no wrong answers. You know what,what challenges are we facing in sales and marketing and product? what sort of conferences do you want to go to? What can sort of continue, basically trying to just program, what are we going to budget for next year?

[00:02:10] Tim: Just so we know, what do we want to accomplish? What do we want to get done? How much money is that going to take? And what can we do? To do that. and it went extremely well. I was just really super happy. we have a small, pretty small team, so it doesn't, some of them took two days. Some took one day I went, took four hours, and just had, and really good for you at the end of it.

[00:02:29] Tim: Traditionally, we've always done sort of a,a, just clear the air kind of comments at the end. what did you like about this? What didn't you like about this? Are there any elephants in the room that we need to talk about, as a group and just left it really positive, sales, marketing, product development, customer service, everyone kind of, I think has a better view of what we're planning to do and how we're planning to grow our planning, to like, retain customers that might be at risk and how to get new customers, particularly, and new things we're going to do with the product, which I'm particularly excited about.

[00:03:02] Tim: So it went really good and I just, it's just nice to be able. Have everyone feel like they have input, not just feel they do. I mean, they have input on how the company is going and how the company is growing. And I think that it's so important to feel like you are part of something that matters and that your, your input and your. heart matters. Yeah. And your vision. Yeah. Nice call back there. yeah, you got to have a team. You really have to feel like what you're doing is important and it makes a difference. And I think that makes such a big difference with retention of valuable employees. I mean, they got right now, the market job market is crazy.

[00:03:37] Tim: So many people are being poached and getting offered ridiculous amounts of money that sometimes you can, or can't. Match. But lot of times it's amazing. We have people that have had offers and reject them because they felt like, you know what, I'm making a difference here. And that's more important to me than maybe a 20% bump in salary.

[00:03:59] Tim: So no, it was just really refreshing. So I was glad to be able to do it. And my, direct boss, she was on the call as well. And just, said how great everything worked was all remote. So we're kind of worried about that. Normally we do it in person, but all my direct reports were remote. So we did it kind of over, teams and had a little board, like a little teams, to do lists board.

[00:04:19] Tim: Right. So we're talking about, but it's dues. So we created a board. And so we have that as a living document that we can now use to build our strategy for next year.

[00:04:27] Carol: Oh, that's really cool.

[00:04:30] Carol: So the thing I like with that too, is you get to see how motivated your peers are. The people who are, at the same level you are doing this. So it kinda, it re-entered it re energizes you whenever you see them super motivated as well. Man, that was a hard word.

[00:04:45] Tim: It was a heart. Yeah. So I had pre like, like pre-meeting work for everyone and they all brought good stuff to the meeting. And then I had post homework that a they're delivering to me tomorrow. So yeah, it's just good to see everyone on the same

[00:04:57] Adam: Wait a minute. Aren't you? The one that was like, don't give me homework for meetings.

[00:05:01] Tim: I don't have homework. I'm

[00:05:03] Adam: You're just fine. Assigning homework to everybody else.

[00:05:06] Tim: I totally, totally fine. Well, I mean, there's some that in four hours you can't get it all done. So

[00:05:11] Carol: I agree.

[00:05:11] Tim: someone says we need to do such and such and such instead of like, okay, in order to figure that out, we got to know this and this. So can you find that out for us?

[00:05:19] Tim: And just, it's not another meeting, it's not another meeting that we'll do it. They'll just deliver that to me. And then now I take all this information and all the other departments have done the same. We call them Strat sessions, will, all of the executives will go away to net. We're going to renting a house down in Florida and we'll spend like five days as a team.

[00:05:37] Tim: just going over all of them in kind of coming up with a consolidated company plan.

[00:05:42] Ben: Very cool. When you get a bunch of people together and you keep an open mind and it's always a great reminder. I think that no one at a company has the monopoly on coming up with good

[00:05:53] Ben: ideas, that really everybody comes a problems with a different perspective and can bring a different shed, shed a different light on a problem space.

[00:06:02] Ben: So that's really how.

[00:06:04] Tim: Yup. And one of the biggest takeaways I took from that is that because we're a small team, we all tend to talk pretty often, but you know, someone brought up, it was really nice just to all get together and just have a chat. I'm like, all right. maybe we'll take that as constructive criticism.

[00:06:18] Tim: I'm just have a monthly call where we all just get together and we don't have anything to say, we'll be short call and we'll just say hello and goodbye. And, but if we know we got stuff to update each other on and then we'll do that. So, I definitely learned some things from the entire experience.

[00:06:29] Adam: Pre pandemic. Would you like occasionally get the team together to go out for happy hour or something after work? I've seen people that do a virtual happy hour with their team, everybody bring a beverage of your choice and we'll just hang out for an hour after work on zoom or whatever

[00:06:43] Tim: yeah.

[00:06:44] Carol: That's cool.

[00:06:44] Tim: So that's me. Carol.

[00:06:47] Carol's Triumph

[00:06:47] Carol: So, I'm going with the triumph this week. You guys heard about it over the weekend. a few episodes back when we had our last potluck, I mentioned copilot and how I was very interested in how this AI pair programming application would work. Like what get help was doing with it. Well, Friday night I got my invite to join the preview of it and it is freaking awesome.

[00:07:15] Carol: It is like the coolest thing I have worked with in a long time. So she just see it putting code on the screen as I'm writing things. It's pretty intelligent. I think they've got something solid going on here.

[00:07:27] Ben: And it runs as a plugin

[00:07:29] Ben: in vs code. or something.

[00:07:31] Carol: Yes. So they also have an intelligence plugin as well. So you can use it with either one with Intel J or BS code, but yeah, you just installed the extension and I have to update it every morning, cause they're constantly, making tweaks to it, but it just runs in the background. So like a little tiny, thing I did was I just created a little modal that was like a confirmation modal, like, Hey, pop this up.

[00:07:52] Carol: We really want the user to make sure that they're absolutely certain that this is what they want. Right. And it forces them to close it. So I just put a little div and named it like confirmation modal, and then there's another dev inside and it's like confirmation content modal. So when I went over to the JS for it, I just wrote a little comment that said, something like close in this, or I was like close, whenever not in use or something.

[00:08:18] Carol: Created all the little JS for me to hide the styles on those inputs. I was like, Hey,

[00:08:24] Tim: Ooh, did a little Clippy pop up and say hi, I see you're creating a confirmation modal. Would you like me to complete this for you?

[00:08:31] Carol: It would be the best thing. If they integrated Clippy with this, I would be so happy. It would be so happy just to see it pop up. I start to get Cliffy, but yeah, it is the coolest thing ever. shared some content with our Patriots and our Patreon channel and, it's just, it's really neat.

[00:08:46] Carol: I'm excited to see what I can do with it when I'm back into riding big toad. Right now, I'm only writing little small things that I find in the backlog because I'm mentoring this week. So that means I don't have a lot of time to code. So, I'm excited next week when I get to actually start writing code again and see what they can do for me yet.

[00:09:03] Ben: do you think you have to run this by anybody at work? Like does someone have to sign off on the use of something like copilot and in

[00:09:10] Carol: Yeah, yeah, they do. I just told someone I had it and they said that sounds really awesome. And I'm taking that as my, you can use it

[00:09:18] Ben: Heck yeah.

[00:09:20] Carol: and I'm not using it all the, anything big or secure I'm using it, like design front end stuff, like small stuff. I'm not running it on our big projects. So.

[00:09:29] Adam: So speaking of Clippy, I want to know, do you guys have a history of Clippy and did you use any of the alternative characters?

[00:09:36] Tim: Oh, the wizard. Yeah.

[00:09:37] Adam: my favorite was the little

[00:09:39] Adam: Einstein guy.

[00:09:40] Tim: Or the dog?

[00:09:41] Adam: dog was good too.

[00:09:42] Tim: I did it. So had, when I was taking classes in school, college, I did a project where I basically created, an Eliza chat bot that was tied to, the wizard, the version of Clippy. And, I remember I showed it to one of the girls in my class and she was like, what does think, talking to me, let's talk, wait, is this thing real?

[00:10:02] Tim: I'm like, it's real. It's just an Eliza program. What's Eliza. I had explained it to her, but yeah, I just thought that was a pretty cool, thing I did, but I don't even remember how I did it. Work program think is visual basic actually at the

[00:10:15] Carol: Nice and BB basic. So that's it for me, Clippy was not part of mine. Thanks, Adam. You took over by trying out. I appreciate that

[00:10:25] Tim: Actually I started, it says my

[00:10:26] Tim: fault. I'm

[00:10:27] Carol: guys hijacking my triumphs.

[00:10:29] Adam: Co-pilot sounds interesting. I'll be really curious to see how well that works out for you.

[00:10:33] Tim: We're just jealous. We didn't get accepted. I put one in and I haven't got accepted

[00:10:36] Adam: So I, I never even applied because I just, it doesn't seem like something I would trust in for work. And I've gotten mostly away from coding when I'm not working.

[00:10:46] Carol: so, in the zone and focused and like, like I said, like we talked about recently, I don't really come up for air while I'm working.

[00:10:52] Adam: I sign in the morning I work until the day is over and then I'm done. And by then I'm like tired. So,

[00:10:58] Tim: You have trust issues.

[00:11:00] Carol: and as you,

[00:11:01] Adam: so all that to say, as Carol's describing this, I'm kind of sitting here thinking, like, I wonder if I could tell it, like, I want to write a mock for this node module and

[00:11:10] Adam: how much of it

[00:11:12] Tim: Do my testing for me,

[00:11:13] Adam: right.

[00:11:13] Adam: But like how much of it, how smart would it be like, oh, this module exports, these functions, and it's going to write, like mock placeholders, just functions for each of those. That would be awesome.

[00:11:23] Carol: So that is my goal over the next couple of weeks is actually have a project outside of work to actually run all design. Cause like Ben said, like, I really don't want to go through the whole getting approval to actually run it on our application, like our true application code. So I'm gonna take it and just put it on something for myself and see what I can do with it. So I'll let you know, because according to what I've read, it can do a of a lot. So we'll

[00:11:47] Tim: black.

[00:11:48] Carol: Yeah. Is this me, Adam?

[00:11:52] Adam's Fail

[00:11:52] Adam: Oh, I'm going to go with a fail this week. earlier today I was doing some testing and, I was writing tests for one of our existing Lambda functions and that Lambda function, basically it receives an SNS message to trigger it. And based on some information in that SNS message, it goes into hits the database to get some more information.

[00:12:11] Adam: And then it writes out a whole bunch of files to S3 and because the amount of files that it needs to write to S3 is so. Numerous. So often what it does is it'll do that in a batch and then it recourses by, it, after finishing successfully. The last thing it does is send another SNS message with basically the same event.

[00:12:30] Adam: So it'll call itself and just loop over until they're the batch that it loads to, to write to S3 zero. Then it just ends without doing an SNS message. Well, so I was writing tests for this thing and I mistakenly had my mock for SNS in the wrong place. And so every time I ran my tests, I was sending a production SNS message and triggering this job to run in production.

[00:12:57] Adam: And because I was sending, test data in, I was the job was failing every single time I ran it all like 20, 30, 40 times I ran it and because it failed and this is a PR like a critical path production thing. It was sending ops genie alarms to our on-call person. Like every minute for almost an hour. I felt so bad when I found out he's like, so does anybody know anything about these errors that are coming in? And I look at it and just based on the data included in the error message, I'm like, oh no, that's me. I'm so sorry.

[00:13:30] Tim: Oh, I got one better for you, Adam. This was a few months back, but I, so I had wrote something that basically sends, an SMS, receipt. It's all linked to a receipt, right? So I have this receipt service at runs and I had my testing suite. I accidentally transpose my phone. For another phone

[00:13:49] Adam: no.

[00:13:50] Tim: Yeah.

[00:13:50] Tim: So this I, this woman, who's like one digit off from me, got like everyday, probably about 50, 60 receipts for, about two weeks. And so what I found is that I call, I actually looked at the number. I called the number and I called her and I said, hi, you don't know me, but I've, I'm the one who's been sending you these

[00:14:12] Adam: Text

[00:14:12] Tim: receipts over and over again.

[00:14:13] Tim: And I sincerely apologize. She's like, yeah, I was wondering that the first day I got the first ones and I just blocked it, so I didn't get any of it. And I'm like, I'm just really sorry. I'd explained. She's like, what are you doing? And I explained, you know what I do? She's like, okay, well I appreciate the apology, but you know, it didn't really bother me once I got couple of them.

[00:14:29] Tim: I just blocked it and it didn't bother me anymore. I'm like, all right. Thank you for being understanding,

[00:14:34] Adam: it said Southern hospitality.

[00:14:36] Carol: Yeah.

[00:14:37] Tim: Yep. Yep. Yeah. She was a 4 7, 8 number. So she's a local girl. So.

[00:14:41] Adam: Cool. Yeah. So that's my, fail this week, but, I guess that brings us to you, Ben, what do you got?

[00:14:47] Ben's Triumph

[00:14:47] Ben: I'm going to close out with a triumph. I don't know if I had mentioned this on last week's call, but I was just about to, or had just deployed a feature that I had been working on for several weeks. And while I was building the feature, it occurred to me that, it was actually gonna take a lot more effort to build than I had originally anticipated.

[00:15:05] Ben: So I was, disheartened, but not discouraged. And I just sort of kept muscling forward. And when I finally deployed it, I, every time I deploy something of note, I kind of go into this post deployment depression. And, and this week I sort of just leaned into that. So this week, my plan was not to really do anything super effective.

[00:15:24] Ben: Just show up for work. Do some small stuff, spend a lot of time deleting code, which is very therapeutic for me. And, instead of trying to fight that post-deployment depression, I just embraced it and used it as a, as an excuse to do some other types of work to let myself get mentally refreshed.

[00:15:42] Ben: And, it just felt like a very healthy way to, to appreciate the situation and to work with it instead of against it.

[00:15:48] Adam: Good for you,

[00:15:48] Carol: Yeah.

[00:15:50] Adam: Good for you for taking care of your mental health.

[00:15:53] Carol: Yeah. And cleaning up code.

[00:15:57] Ben: deleting code is, is like the most exciting thing

[00:15:59] Carol: Yeah.

[00:16:00] Ben: I had one delete that I think was like three or 4,000 lines of code

[00:16:04] Adam: Was that the one you sent a screenshot of the,

[00:16:06] Ben: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.

[00:16:07] Adam: Def numbers?

[00:16:10] Carol: coat deletes are very intense for me. They're very like, okay. I think everything's good to go. I am 99%. Sure. This is never used anymore, but I always have that immediate like, oh Is there somewhere that called it that I didn't catch? Or is there some other external piece that has access to this that I don't know about until, a week down the road, when there's a failure, when that external process that runs every Thursday at 3:00 PM, like executes and I'm like, okay, I'm like, just breathe.

[00:16:44] Carol: It's fine. You can restore it. It's in good. You're good. Don't worry. It's still out there. We can get it back. It's okay.

[00:16:50] Adam: I feel like companies that have a truly comprehensive test suite are so far in the minority and that's just, that's based entirely on my personal experience.

[00:17:03] Adam: I,

[00:17:03] Adam:

[00:17:03] Adam: I honestly, I think that the most tests I've ever seen at any company is the tests that I write, which is astonishingly little, which is, which says a lot about how few tests I've come across in my career.

[00:17:19] Ben: I think we've discussed this before, even if I had a lot of testing experience, which to be very clear, I have almost none. I still feel like I'd be very nervous all the time. and I'd feel like there's stuff that the tests were probably missing and I'd have to test everything manually. Anyway.

[00:17:35] Ben: and side note, I know I've talked about regular expressions before and how much I love them. I use them all day, every day

[00:17:42] Ben: in my code searches because a lot of times to Carol's point, you're deleting something and you want to see if it's used somewhere else in the code.

[00:17:49] Carol: Yep.

[00:17:49] Ben: a lot of times that's figuring out how to search for tokens inside of word boundaries, or doing some sort of optional parenthesis for invocation after it, or, in the ColdFusion world.

[00:18:00] Ben: There's a lot of stuff where it's not just the name of the thing. It's a get thing. Cause it was a synthesized access where there was added to the component. So you have to start searching for things with optional prefixes and I not a day goes by where regular expressions don't make my life better. And I just want to give them a shout out.

[00:18:18] Tim: Not a day goes by where I don't understand a regular expression.

[00:18:21] Carol: I was going to say, I get stuck in the, how do I make this thing work again? And I'm on the internet. Like, I'm searching, I'm like Google, please help me. Cause I cannot make it work. And then I'm like, oh

[00:18:32] Tim: There are literally times I've actually messaged Ben to help me with a regular expression.

[00:18:37] Carol: I'm like, I need this or this period something I don't know.

[00:18:42] Ben: Oh, they're so good.

[00:18:43] Carol: Yeah. They're good when they work. Right. I'll give you that. I'll give you that then.

[00:18:46] Tim: Yeah, but I mean, we talk about, we read clean code. It is not explicitly obvious using regular expressions. Right.

[00:18:54] Carol: Oh no, you need to comment what that things do.

[00:18:57] Tim: It's so not explicit

[00:18:59] Adam: I've taken up the habit of, if I'm going to leave a rederick, regular expression behind in the code, I will leave a comment, very close to it, as close to it, as I can get it, where I take that same rejects. And I break each chunk of it up onto a separate line and leave a comment about, okay, this chunk does this.

[00:19:14] Adam: And then like, I'll have, if it's parentheses and like multiple nested parentheses, I'm like in denting and break it up as much as I possibly can and leave comments about those because I truly believe that rejects is like a one way programming language. It's you can write it, but you can't read it.

[00:19:30] Carol: Right.

[00:19:31] Ben: absolutely.

[00:19:32] Tim: like a hash,

[00:19:33] Adam: Yeah.

[00:19:34] Carol: Yeah.

[00:19:34] Tim: you look at it. It works. I'm not sure

[00:19:36] Adam: It's like an MD five hash of what you were thinking at the

[00:19:38] Tim: Yeah, exactly.

[00:19:39] Carol: The other thing I do is I have two lines and I'll do the top. One is like what the string look like. So say I

[00:19:46] Carol: have an email address and I, it comes in as an email address. And the second line is what I expect it to return from the search. So if I want just a domain name, like what is after the app sign, I can be like, this is the part of it I'm taking out.

[00:19:59] Carol: So I would expect it to come in as this and go out as that. So you could test it with that and make sure that it's still working.

[00:20:06] Tim: Yeah, those are good Those are good comments.

[00:20:08] Carol: Does a good comment.

[00:20:10] Tim: This is a rejects is not a good comment.

[00:20:13] Carol: Does rejects search? Yes.

[00:20:16] Adam: No, my goodness.

[00:20:19] Carol's Method: Rocket Book

[00:20:19] Carol: So today,

[00:20:20] Adam: Yeah, let's talk about doing things.

[00:20:23] Carol: oh yeah, yeah.

[00:20:25] Adam: To doing. so yeah, like, so, okay. We're doing this sort of in honor of, Facebook today announced that their new name is meadow, which is a terrible name, but we're not going to talk about that. but because of their new name being met, it got me thinking about, so Ben has this habit of leaving himself notes in our Discord of like things he might want to talk about.

[00:20:44] Carol: Yeah, link in our chat or Discord chat.

[00:20:46] Adam: And so like, okay. It would be Metta to talk about Ben's to do's in discord. That's what, that's how my brain works. That's how we got here. And then I was just like, okay, well, let's talk about how we, like, how you manage your to do is do you have like a digital to-do list or on paper or what? So that's how we got here and ready go. you Carolyn

[00:21:04] Carol: Oh, sweet. Cool. So I just got a new rocket book. Do you know what rocket book

[00:21:09] Adam: No, I have no idea.

[00:21:11] Carol: can Google it.

[00:21:12] Adam: Well, that wasn't very kind.

[00:21:15] Carol: Let me Google that for you. So they come with this nifty little QR code on the pay. And then on the bottom, you can't really see them well, and I shouldn't be showing them anyways.

[00:21:27] Carol: There are these little

[00:21:28] Tim: It's a podcast. It's kind of hard to

[00:21:29] Carol: Sorry, you guys. So each page comes with a QR code, so you can scan it on your phone and I'm at the bottom. It has these little symbols. It's like, a rocket book sign,diamond, apples and other things. And whenever I write down my, no, I just put a check mark on that circle or I put any kind of mark on it.

[00:21:48] Carol: So when I scan it, it knows what action to take on that list. So like, if I mark the very first box on the bottom, it's going to send it to Evernote from. My work notebook. So it automatically puts it up there. And at the very top of it, you do the double hashtags, the double pounds, sorry, the double pound signs in front of the name and the double after.

[00:22:12] Carol: And that becomes the file name. So I can be like, oh, for example, we're onboarding someone. So I have an onboarding documents. So when I scan it, it sends it over to Evernote, which is how I keep track of a lot of my notes. And it automatically goes into my, work notebook. And the file is not only a scan of it.

[00:22:32] Carol: It's also the, is it OCR? What is

[00:22:34] Adam: optical character

[00:22:35] Carol: yeah, where it basically reads it to text. So then I can copy and paste out and make another list from it. Yeah. And FYI, if you want to know the price, it's like 30 bucks on Amazon

[00:22:47] Tim: yeah. So if only if

[00:22:49] Adam: all right?

[00:22:51] Tim: then

[00:22:51] Carol: it'd be

[00:22:51] Carol: sexier.

[00:22:52] Adam: I don't get it?

[00:22:54] Tim: no, actually it is microwave

[00:22:55] Tim: safe.

[00:22:56] Tim: Yeah. It's microwave

[00:22:57] Tim: safe. Yeah.

[00:22:58] Adam: spine?

[00:22:59] Carol: it's kind of rubbery.

[00:23:00] Carol: No, this has to be metal. No, It's not. Oh, this is absolutely. Plastic-y

[00:23:05] Tim: know why you would microwave it, but.

[00:23:08] Carol: interesting. But yeah. So all you do is after I scan it, I just take a damp cloth and wipe it off. So now I have a new list to

[00:23:14] Carol: go. Yeah. But there's like 10 pages on here. I can

[00:23:18] Adam: So it's not like

[00:23:20] Adam: truly, okay.

[00:23:22] Carol: there's a cat. Yeah. There's a calendar in the front.

[00:23:24] Carol: There's a list. All that stuff. no. It's reusable and it's for me. I prefer this over taking notes on like my iPad. Cause I hate that glass feel. I don't like, I like to write notes on paper, so I just use fusion pins and yeah.

[00:23:39] Adam: is it a little less clumsy? Like if I like dry erase, except for the fact that you have to write so huge on dry erase, because it feels like it was very

[00:23:46] Carol: no,no. You use regular ink pens. They're just fusion. They're called fusion something. Oh, no

[00:23:52] Carol: friction

[00:23:53] Carol: for Exxon yet. They're erasable ink pens. And instead of using the eraser tip, I just use a dry erase cloth anyway. So when my list, I just put little boxes next to the items and they scan it as actual check boxes

[00:24:07] Carol: so I can check them off, copy and paste.

[00:24:09] Carol: And then I erase and start over the next day. And there's my list still there.

[00:24:13] Adam: Or I can leave it on there and keep growing it. But yeah, I like it because it's digital and I can save it.

[00:24:19] Adam: So unless you create a digital artifact by writing in a notebook and then taking a picture of it with your

[00:24:23] Carol: Yes. Because I love to handwrite things. I remember things by writing them down and because I spent so much time writing code and on my computer, I don't like taking notes on my computer. I really like writing in a notebook for whatever reason, just how my brain takes down information. Very well. Yeah.

[00:24:41] Carol: So I create my to-do list in my rocket book now, and I scan it in and it goes to Evernote or it goes to, I can have it send another check box, can send it to slack. I can be like, slack this please.

[00:24:53] Adam: So can you update the same document? Like if you just picking something at random, if you were making like a to-do list and you have a to-do list going in Evernote. When you do a, to do list tomorrow will append to the same to-do list or is it a new document?

[00:25:08] Carol: it's done so far is it creates a new, but because it creates that text version of it at the bottom, I just copy it out and put it in the next one or put it in the old one and delete the one I just scanned. So it takes the image. And then I also have it set to read it to text, and then I just copy and paste into yesterdays.

[00:25:24] Carol: And that way I have one document going and it says there's a way to do it. I just haven't figured it out yet.

[00:25:30] Tim: It's here's the rocket book wave.

[00:25:32] Carol: And the rocket book, a fusion.

[00:25:35] Tim: Okay. Yeah. Don't don't put up microwave then.

[00:25:40] Adam: to know.

[00:25:41] Tim: For the microbiome, the rocket book wave. I was Googling this while you're talking, you actually do to erase it. You put it in the microwave

[00:25:47] Tim: for,

[00:25:48] Tim: yeah. You put it in and whack for a couple minutes and it will basically wipe all the ink off.

[00:25:52] Carol: that's really

[00:25:53] Carol: cool.

[00:25:54] Adam: Uh, and say, okay, so for taking my notes and to dues, I use an Etch-a-Sketch and then when I'm done, I just shake it.

[00:26:02] Tim: Yeah, I'm a lot more old school than you on that. Carol. I just have a paper notebook. Adobe gave me,

[00:26:07] Carol: Yeah. But you don't have a coffee on that, right? I mean, you don't have it

[00:26:11] Carol: anywhere and when you're done,

[00:26:12] Carol: you're done.

[00:26:12] Tim: not digitally now it's in paper. So,

[00:26:14] Carol: Oh. And since it, it scans the texts where you, so it takes your handwriting to text. I can search things in there so I can be like, find bank

[00:26:23] Carol: find

[00:26:23] Tim: really surprised as OCR could read my handwriting. I can't read my handwriting

[00:26:27] Tim: so

[00:26:28] Carol: always get my, but that's also making me improve my handwriting.

[00:26:32] Tim: that's yeah, it's pointless.

[00:26:36] Ben: What does it do about illustrations? Like if you sketch something, how does

[00:26:39] Carol: It, it just straight up as an image. I haven't had it transfer in. It gives the text words out of it, but I haven't tried like big texts, like big image or diagrams or flow charts or anything like that.

[00:26:52] Adam's Method: Pen & Paper

[00:26:52] Adam: So I'm not trying to yuck your yum or anything if it's working for you. That's fantastic. But

[00:26:55] Carol: Perfect. For me.

[00:26:56] Adam: to me, like for my workflow, it sounds like the worst of both worlds, right? Like the digital aspect and the physical aspect. The thing I don't like about physical is I type fast. Right. I spend my entire day typing, so I'm a fast typer.

[00:27:11] Adam: And so that is why I tend to prefer digital tools for everything, including to do list management. But the thing that I hate the most is trying to manage something a to-do list or whatever on my phone, it just feels so clumsy.

[00:27:25] Adam: And, so because of that, I have taken,the habit of using field notes, notebooks, and I put them, I just gave him my keep two of them in my back pocket, one for to-do list and one for taking notes in, cause I don't like my notes, getting intermingled with my tattoos.

[00:27:38] Adam: And then I have to constantly flip back and forth. I like just I'm on the latest page, my to-do list sort of thing. And I guess I kind of take after a method I saw Adam Savage use, which is, he draws a little box for the check mark and put a little summary next to it, of what you're gonna do.

[00:27:55] Adam: And then when you start the task or you make significant progress on it, you can like put a line from corner to corner in the box, or maybe shade in half the box or something. and then when you finish it, you shade in the entire

[00:28:05] Adam: box. And,it works relatively well for me. My problem is, lately I find a lot of my, to do's are either something that's going to be done in a couple of minutes or something that is going to last months.

[00:28:18] Adam: Like I've got, probably half a page of, to do's right now that have been on my list. And I just haven't made any progress on them because I'm like waiting for other people and the right time to do things. And it's just there as a constant reminder that I haven't done that thing yet, which is a little depressing. But, yeah, I mean, other than that, it's working really well for me. I actually, because of this method for the very first time completely filled my last field notes notebooks. So this one that I'm holding here is my second one. And I tend to like start using notebooks and then stop because I fall out of the habit and it just like this method of doing the checkboxes has worked so well for me.

[00:28:58] Adam: I actually one.

[00:29:00] Tim's Method: Pen & Paper, Comments, Shared Boards

[00:29:00] Tim: So I have three flavors of to-dos. So one is pretty much exactly what you just said with, I have a, a hardbound notebook. Then I put a list of subdues with check boxes and do the same thing with what is partially done, a line through. And when it's completely done, it's an X and I go through they're dated and I can go back and just look for the ones that aren't Xed.

[00:29:19] Tim: those are four things that personally I want you to. I'm the only one involved in that. that's my to do personal. It can be, some of it is work and some of it might even be personal issues. and then the second one is code to dues and that's just simply putting to-do colon and then whatever I need to do.

[00:29:38] Tim: So whenever I looking through code, like, okay, I need to refactor that. I have nested if statements here, which are disgusting. So I need to refactor this into some functions. That's the second thing for code. And then thirdly, I manage people. So there's to, do's where they're kind of shared to dues or their to do's that I want to make sure someone else gets done and I'm used to use slack.

[00:30:00] Tim: Now we use teams. So in teams, I create a board as a, to do board and I assign them to either myself or. The other party or to both of us, and to just make it with checkboxes in there of things that need to get done. And sometimes due dates, depending on, what it is. So those are my ways to handle to dues.

[00:30:18] Carol: Yo 10 NDS code. If you were to switch over and use that, there's an extension, you could install, call to duty. And it'll literally show you all the to-dos in your code and you can even set it to use like what I do as I do to do so my Cola and I put C H so that it finds my to do's and puts those in. yeah.

[00:30:41] Carol: And once, once CF builders in Visco, which be any day now

[00:30:46] Carol: you're going to get that extension and your code to do's will be

[00:30:49] Carol: so much easier to find

[00:30:51] Tim: do a search. So.

[00:30:52] Carol: To do tree. I love to do tree. It just makes finding those actual two dues easy to see and put them in your face. So go do them. Yeah.

[00:31:02] Adam: also another one called better comments. That will is if you have a comment and it has like, a question mark in it, it makes it blue. Like

[00:31:10] Adam: if it, the

[00:31:10] Adam: first character of the comment is a question mark, or if it's, if it says two do colon, it makes it like bright orange. Or if it's, it starts with an exclamation point, it makes it a bright red.

[00:31:19] Adam: So I like that one just for making those two stand out when you're looking at the code. And then yeah, I liked the two new tree as well.

[00:31:25] Tim: What about like personal life to do is do you keep them separate from your work to dues?

[00:31:31] Ben: I do. I have, I use Trello for my personal to do's and then JIRA for all my professional to do.

[00:31:39] Carol: How do you do.

[00:31:41] Ben's Method: Trello & JIRA

[00:31:41] Ben: so my strategy, I like to use a technique if you can call it that, that, my old manager, rich Armstrong used to talk about, which he would say that, you let the chaos reign and then you reign in the chaos. and that's kinda how I approached my to-do lists. Anything that enters my head that I want to do.

[00:31:59] Ben: I immediately put it into a, to do item on the JIRA board, which I had almost posted as a joke on Twitter the other day that I have 51 items in my to-do list on my Kanban board. and I posted somewhat sarcastically. Cause obviously that's not how you do agile. but it is actually a strategy that works really well for me because to me, that to-do list it does it almost doesn't matter how long it is, things just bubble to the top or they bubbled to the bottom sometimes depending on how.

[00:32:25] Ben: And then I just came over the other stuff and it doesn't really get in the way. And then if I notice that I'm skimming over something so many times in a row, like for weeks on end, then I'll take it out of the to-do list and I'll put it into the backlog and probably never look at it again. but the beautiful thing about having this kind of chaotic to-do list in front of me all the time is that I'm able to, what I think, is maximize downtime.

[00:32:51] Ben: So if I'm waiting on someone else to do something, or I'm like, if I'm waiting on a PR review or I just, feeling mentally fried and I have to just like step away from my main task for a few minutes, I have this massive list of things and I can just quickly look over it and you never know what pops out at me.

[00:33:06] Ben: I'm like, oh yeah, that I've always wanted to do that. Let me go in and delete that code that I took note of, six months ago and has been on my to-do list since then. So.

[00:33:13] Carol: Is this a to-do list that any developer on your team could pick up and work on? Or are they just something only you have visibility to

[00:33:20] Ben: No, whenever I create a ticket in JIRA, I immediately assign it to myself.

[00:33:24] Carol: oh

[00:33:26] Carol: yeah.

[00:33:27] Tim: But other people could see it, right.

[00:33:28] Carol: They can

[00:33:29] Carol: see it. They just will know not to pick it up. Yeah. That's where my confusion was. I was like, cause if we, if I created like, 51 to do is they're all going to be singing there's to do. And there's 14 other people on my team. They're going to pick it up and start working at

[00:33:41] Tim: That really

[00:33:41] Tim: programming.

[00:33:42] Carol: can be very confusing.

[00:33:45] Carol: So I was like, well, this sounds like a cluster quickly, but that makes more sense now. So if you're assigning it to you, then it's safely sitting there secure. Okay.

[00:33:55] Ben: Yeah. And at least with the way that we use JIRA, I think everybody looks at JIRA with their own little face filters. So they're only looking at their tickets.

[00:34:03] Carol: Yeah, we definitely don't do that.

[00:34:05] Ben: okay. yeah, that's just how my team works. I don't know how common that.

[00:34:08] Carol: Hold on. Let me rephrase that. I don't do that. Everyone else on my team could totally be doing that, but I just look at the whole entire, like, I don't even know what you call it. Just the project. Yeah.

[00:34:19] Tim: Your team player, you,

[00:34:20] Carol: Look at me.

[00:34:21] Adam: wants to look at the forest, not the trees.

[00:34:23] Carol: Yeah. Yeah. I see. I need to make sure, like I'm not the only one not working.

[00:34:27] Tim: I thought of a fifth category of to-do for me. So the other one is an outlook. I will. flag a message as, I forget what it is. It's basically a little red flag that you can click. And that shows up as flag

[00:34:40] Tim: messages

[00:34:40] Adam: is this outlook you speak of?

[00:34:42] Tim: and outlook is, I don't know, there's this company called Microsoft and I've ever heard them.

[00:34:46] Tim: They, there might be big one day.

[00:34:47] Tim: Um,

[00:34:48] Adam: right?

[00:34:48] Tim: they do it. Yeah, they might. They may dos.

[00:34:50] Tim: Yeah.

[00:34:51] Tim: Yeah. They do. Yeah. They do that as well, which is probably the best thing they ever made. But, yeah, so that's sort of a think of it sort of as like an unofficial to do list, like this stuff. That's like, it's a, it's an email that I need to respond to and deal with.

[00:35:07] Tim: I just don't have the time or energy or desire to deal with it. Now I just click that and then that's sort of becomes a, do you know if I hit, like, when Ben hits a lull, like he said something maybe we need to take your mind off something or just you're waiting on something. I'll go through my flagged emails go, right.

[00:35:24] Tim: Let me respond to this. Or you do whatever on this,that's sort of unofficial to do

[00:35:29] Carol: Hmm. That's cool.

[00:35:31] To-Dos At Work

[00:35:31] Ben: Yeah. One thing that I think maybe I do that no one else does. It's sort of the stuff that Tim's talking about. For me, everything goes in JIRA. The,our project board isn't really related to any specific project it's just for the team. So if I get tasked with having to do, like a secure, we have to do security training once a year, or typically once a year, we do some sort of, bias training.

[00:35:55] Ben: And so if I have to do that, I just put it right in the JIRA board, right along my code tasks, because for me, if it doesn't exist in JIRA, I probably won't do it.

[00:36:05] Tim: That's funny. I think exactly. I hate putting tickets in JIRA. I ha I have everyone else. I will delegate that to everyone else, but me, I like, I just, I get to the description. I'm like what needs to be done or I know what needs to be done. I just don't. I really don't want to spell it out.

[00:36:22] Carol: You go to slack, you screenshot the conversation you had with someone and you put it in the description. This is how you create

[00:36:28] Tim: I hate Philly. hate filling out and there's

[00:36:31] Tim: like it, and there's so many different buckets that, you know, because the company's like so diverse and I'm, my department's a bit completely different from the rest of the company. And it's like, ah, yeah, none of this applies to me. I don't want to fill any of these forms out in some of them required.

[00:36:47] Tim: So I'm not even going to bother.

[00:36:48] Carol: Thank you. Yeah, I am mentoring a new hire that we got this week and the to-do list has been really great because I've been able to go through our confluence documentation and our mat build out. And I've been able to go through the onboarding docs with him and be like, okay, here's everything we need to do.

[00:37:07] Carol: Here's like your whole list of things. And then I have two full pages and working on a third of things that are just missing from the documentation. So I have to doubt, take everything we found and update it so that those lists of what you do to onboard are more accurate and up to date and include things like how the open, help desk tickets to request.

[00:37:28] Carol:

[00:37:28] Tim: just make Alex do it.

[00:37:31] Carol: To request down to request like permissions that things, because when you create the Zen desk ticket to get the permission, there's like 10 buckets to select from. And when you're new, you don't know what bucket any of this stuff goes in. So I am putting that in there too. So going very thorough and yes, our new hire is amazing.

[00:37:51] Tim: I know

[00:37:53] Tim: I hired him originally.

[00:37:54] Carol: I still him, no,

[00:37:56] Tim: Yes, you did.

[00:37:57] Carol: not me. I had nothing to do with him getting hired. Let's just be clear.

[00:38:00] Tim: That's fine. absolutely fine.

[00:38:03] Adam: So Carol, I think it was you that asked how, if we separate personal from professional, I thought I

[00:38:08] Adam: kind of mixed them.

[00:38:09] Carol: Tim.

[00:38:10] Tim: It was,

[00:38:10] Tim: but I use Carol's

[00:38:11] Adam: Okay. You through your voice. Okay. Got it.

[00:38:14] Adam: sorry. so I was, I thought I mixed them in my little notebook here, but I just went through and looked at them and they're all personal.

[00:38:19] Adam: And I think that the reason that is because, for professional tasks, I tend to just keep a to-do list of like three or four things. So we have a, a Google doc that we share among our whole. And we have a morning meeting every morning. what's kind of our stand up, but it's not really a stand-up.

[00:38:36] Adam: And, we just catch up from yesterday real quick. And then this is what I'm going to be focusing on today. And if there's any other, if anybody needs to change somebody else's priorities, that's the place to bring it up. And, so that's where my professional to-do list goes. And if something has been hanging out there so long that I just am not getting to it yet, I will create like a GitHub issue for it, so that if somebody else can get to it before me, that's fine.

[00:38:58] Adam: They can do that. And, so that's where my professional duties are. We just like, I try to only look maybe a day or two ahead and anything beyond that is just goes in the backlog. and I guess all my notebook is personal

[00:39:15] Carol: But when you say it goes in the backlog, do you mean like your mental backlog or do

[00:39:19] Adam: No, when I say backlog, I'm talking, I file a get hub issue for it. And some, most of the time that's, I think, I feel like a get hub issue is probably a little bit less formal than a JIRA ticket. all I need is a

[00:39:29] Adam: title and a description,

[00:39:31] Carol: can't you use them both the same way. Like aren't they pretty much interchangeable

[00:39:35] Adam: I am not a heavy JIRA user. I've only ever interacted with it in a couple of different open source projects. so I don't

[00:39:42] Adam: know.

[00:39:42] Carol: yeah, I think they're pretty much

[00:39:44] Adam: Yeah. the thing that I think that the sense that I have is that JIRA has a whole bunch of like fields that are, that you can set a priority

[00:39:50] Adam: and and a type of thing is as a bug or an enhancement request or

[00:39:55] Adam: comment or whatever.

[00:39:56] Adam: Yeah.

[00:39:57] Adam: whereas with a GitHub issue, it's a title and a description and you

[00:40:00] Carol: That's perfect. I would probably be more apt to open things if that's all I had to do,

[00:40:05] Tim: to me too.

[00:40:07] Adam: Yeah, you don't

[00:40:07] Adam: have to assign it to a project. And although you can like get hub does have, like, you can have milestones and you can attach a ticket to a milestone or milestone to a ticket, however you wanna do it. And it has labels, but all that stuff is optional. yeah.

[00:40:19] To-Do Entry Templates

[00:40:19] Ben: It's funny, this is very tangential, but something you said just reminded me of this every now and then I'll get tickets in JIRA that have been created by someone on our QA or quality assurance team. And they have a template that they go on and they fill that template out no matter what, even if it's the most obvious issue and it's stuff like, like this button doesn't work and they'll have a description of the fact that it's not working and then they'll have the expected behavior is like the button should work.

[00:40:49] Ben: But the actual behaviors of the button doesn't work. And I'm like, you could have just said, fix this button. It didn't have to be this whole thing every single

[00:40:57] Carol: Yo

[00:40:57] Carol: button.

[00:40:59] Tim: don't know, man. I've seen so many incomplete tickets in my time. It's like the tickets is useless. I guess this doesn't work. Like, all right, I'm going to need a little bit

[00:41:07] Adam: Oh my God. So yeah, so we have our homegrown ticket system integrated in our product for our user system and it tickets to us. And we got so many terrible tickets that we just did. The default text in the description is now like, I should go look it up and read it too. But it's like, what I expected to see colon three blank lines.

[00:41:25] Adam: What I actually saw colon three blank lines, like a template that they could fill out. And so many times it's just, they put their cursor at the end of what I expected to see or whatever that first line is. And they just type whatever they feel like saying. And then they hit send,

[00:41:39] Tim: Yeah. It's like, all right. So they say this, someone will say this, happened, right? They'll explain what happened. I'm like,

[00:41:47] Tim: what Right. What did you want to happen? what went wrong? You just told me what happened. I don't understand what you expected to

[00:41:54] Carol: And the best part is when you open the code and you're like, yep. That was exactly how it's coded to happen. So

[00:41:59] Carol: what's

[00:42:00] Carol: wrong.

[00:42:00] Tim: That's it? That

[00:42:01] Carol: Accurate, accurate,

[00:42:04] Adam: My favorite is when they're like, I need you to look at my message or something like that. And I'm like, okay, but what message? Give me a link. Give me a name of the thing.

[00:42:13] Adam: Give

[00:42:13] Carol: Something a little more, a little more.

[00:42:16] Tim: So someone sent me in an error message that said, because for PCI reasons, we Sue and just security reasons you suppress the error, the

[00:42:23] Tim: actual error. Right. And all it said was there was an error. And so they screenshot it and sent it to me. Like this is beyond useless. Beyond useless.

[00:42:33] Carol: at least give me a time, stamp something?

[00:42:36] Tim: Yeah. Yeah. At the times, fortunately, they had like the URL. So I was able to say that this page was the one that did it and I could go through the exception log. I'm like, okay, this is the last one from that page. And I can now see the error in the logs, but yeah, there was an error is not

[00:42:51] Carol: no.

[00:42:53] Tim: to say there was a

[00:42:54] Adam: it's it's gotten better in recent months, but originally when we added the ability to add attachments, file attachments to our tickets, we got so many word documents containing screenshots who is bad.

[00:43:10] Carol: So I would do it, but I'd be so mad that I had to look at them.

[00:43:13] Tim:

[00:43:13] Carol: Yeah. So like that today we had a story come in from our customers that was like added preference for a web form. Like just a link visit, add a preference for the customer preference for a link to the web forum. And the immediate question was, is this just a, like, where'd you going to add this preference and no context to it?

[00:43:31] Carol: Like, it's just going to turn on and off and do nothing. And then they're like, oh yeah, I guess we don't really know what they're wanting it to do. Do we were like, there's only to what's the link? What are we going to do with it? No idea.

[00:43:45] Tim: I got one yesterday, it was like change the wording to match the new process. I'm like, please just give me the exact wording.

[00:43:54] Carol: Yeah.

[00:43:55] Carol: guessing.

[00:43:56] Carol: no guessing.

[00:43:58] Adam: Or we get a, so I worked with a lot of universities and we'll get occasionally, like we've changed our branding, please update. And I'm like, you can attach files. You can tell me what the colors are. Don't make it like don't give me homework and a ticket,

[00:44:12] Tim: the branding guideline.

[00:44:13] Carol: yeah.

[00:44:15] Carol: Yeah.

[00:44:17] Tim: Oh yeah.

[00:44:18] Ben: One thing that I run into and I have, so one of my sort of, OCD issues is that I feel like I can never deploy anything to production, unless there's a JIRA ticket number in the pull request.

[00:44:32] Carol: Okay.

[00:44:32] Ben: but then every now and then I'll run across stuff that really doesn't relate to anything. And almost didn't, doesn't qualify as code.

[00:44:38] Ben: So, typically if I'm going to start a new ColdFusion component, a lot of times what I'll do is I'll just copy an older, ColdFusion component, paste it into a new file and then delete most of

[00:44:46] Ben: it. And every now and then what I'll realize is, like 10 files later, there was a misspelling somewhere in a place that had no functional value.

[00:44:56] Ben: And I'm like, oh, I really can't leave that misspelling, their emotional. But I also, Mike, I can't create a JIRA ticket just to fix comments in 10 different files. That feels weird and then saw. So sometimes we'll try and do is just sneak it in with another unrelated PR just so it can go to production, but it doesn't have its own JIRA ticket.

[00:45:15] Ben: And,it's so silly. Cause I could just have a PR that doesn't actually have a JIRA ticket, but I,like I

[00:45:20] Adam: So, what you do

[00:45:20] Adam: is you find some titles or maybe if there, if you can't find any that are publicly visible, you create one. I purposely put a typo in that goes out to production, and then you've got a JIRA tickets, like fixed typos. And you just submit like all your code comment, typos or variable name, typo fixes along with your copy

[00:45:37] Carol: Ben would be the happiest person to get that wet. He'd be like the lips I'm taking it.

[00:45:44] Tim: I know, kind of veering off topic here, but it just kind of triggered my memory. A couple of days ago, I spent an ungodly amount of time dealing with, so I thought there was an SSL certificate era and there was so we use let's encrypt and they changed their, they changed their route certificate

[00:46:00] Tim: and yeah, we shout about this, but there was some systems that, some reason it started, I mean, even after it had happened, our, development environments, they changed certificates every third, every 60 days.

[00:46:12] Tim: And. They weren't working. So rather than just manually updating the CA certs, I went and got the latest version of Java downloaded their CA certs and put it in. And now it, it worked flawlessly, but there's this one system that just, no matter what I did, when I connected to it, it kept giving me a connection error, couldn't connect to it.

[00:46:31] Tim: And I just, in my mind, it was like, this was a CA search problem. This was an SSL issue. And I kept banging my head against that wall until I eventually realized that I had spelled website name wrong, that I was trying to connect to it w it was, the website was called Tyrian was part of the name, but it was tryin. T R why is that a Tyr? And,after like four hours of begging

[00:46:56] Tim: my head and going for hours, just questioning, like if I should even be in this job anymore, if I, I need to quit and just be a greeter at Walmart, yeah. I'm like, oh, I spelled it wrong. And I spelled it wrong in several places actually.

[00:47:09] Tim: So yeah. Change that and everything worked great. So yeah. Spelling mistakes.

[00:47:14] Tim: Yeah.

[00:47:15] Ben: Well, the

[00:47:16] Ben: human brain

[00:47:17] Tim: the human brain. Yeah. It doesn't

[00:47:18] Ben: is it's so amazing. Have you ever seen those pages where apparently if you look at a word, as long as the first letter and the last letter are in the right place, it almost doesn't

[00:47:29] Ben: matter. The internal letters of The

[00:47:30] Carol: Yeah.

[00:47:31] Ben: and it's one of those things where I'll be typing and I'll see the little red school, the line pop up under a word and I'm staring at the word and I'm

[00:47:38] Ben: like,

[00:47:39] Carol: wrong with.

[00:47:40] Ben: like it looks totally perfect.

[00:47:41] Ben: And I'll even like, in my mind, I'm iterating over the letter is trying to figure out where it is. And then finally, I'll right. Click and just fix the spelling. And it's exactly what Tim was just saying. It's just two letters,

[00:47:51] Ben: switch direction. And no matter how much

[00:47:54] Ben: I stared at it, I

[00:47:55] Carol: Yep.

[00:47:55] Ben: see it.

[00:47:56] Tim: now. Yeah. This is crazy.

[00:47:59] Task Management Systems

[00:47:59] Adam: All right. So, so pulling us back toward our topic here. Do any of you guys follow, or have you learned about any specific, methods for task management? I guess I'll call it. So the one that's coming to mind for me, and it's not that I necessarily follow it. I haven't read the book, but it's called getting things done.

[00:48:15] Adam: Have you heard of this?

[00:48:16] Ben: know of it.

[00:48:17] Adam: I haven't read the book, but I have watched a presentation by another person who hasn't read the book, where he tried to explain

[00:48:23] Carol: Who has it?

[00:48:24] Adam: Yeah.

[00:48:25] Carol: your presentation by someone else who has not read the

[00:48:28] Adam: But

[00:48:28] Adam: he felt

[00:48:28] Carol: what was in the book.

[00:48:30] Adam: he felt like he understood what was in the book.

[00:48:32] Carol: got it. Just making sure.

[00:48:33] Carol: All

[00:48:33] Carol: right.

[00:48:34] Adam: being honest here. And, I mean, my understanding is basically like, out of your inbox and into your to-do list.

[00:48:40] Adam: And if it's going to take less than you, you pick a number, but let's just say five minutes, right. If it's gonna take less than five minutes, then when you see it, you just do it. It's done. You don't have to put it down in any list, anything, you just do it. And then it's gone out of your way. And if it's going to take more than that than you put it in your list and you prioritize it or, give today in future or whatever.

[00:48:57] Adam: I'm just curious. Do you guys have some sort of method that you follow or.

[00:49:01] Ben: I don't have any method other than all of my tickets are very small. I probably don't ever have a ticket that would take more than a day to work on. If it takes more than a day, it might break it up into smaller tasks. That can typically be deployed independently with feature flags, feature flags.

[00:49:23] Carol: We

[00:49:24] Carol: have to whisper that for now. On every time Ben says feature.

[00:49:28] Carol: Beautiful

[00:49:28] Adam: you say feature flags three times, Ben appears and.

[00:49:32] Carol: speech, black speech, blacks. I liked that approach. I liked the big to small. I like to go something big and put it into smaller chunks. I have a hard time deploying small pieces though. I don't, we don't have feature flags, right. So I tend to need the, and tend to write things that are dependent on each other. So while I could get multiple pull requests out for review to make the review smaller, ultimately they're all going to need to go together with most of my big things anyways.

[00:49:58] Carol: Yeah.

[00:50:00] Tim: I mean, Malcolm Gladwell. I mean the guy with the crazy hair, he talks about how little things can make a big difference. So it's just constantly working on little things in incremental improvements. Yeah. what you go for to get to the big thing.

[00:50:13] Ben: Oh, I know we've talked about this on a previous episode, maybe like 15 or 20 episodes ago, but at the end of the Marsham, he's teaching a class of future astronauts and he said, he talks about how up in space, like something will go wrong inevitably, and then you just solve one problem and then another problem and another problem.

[00:50:31] Ben: And if you solve enough problems in a row, you get to go home. And that's how I feel about work every day. I'm like, I'm just going to solve this problem. The next problem, even if, sometimes I don't even see what the end result looks like just yet. I think I've talked about this before. Like I just, I know what the next step is and if I can just keep doing that and I feel like I'm going in the right direction, then I eventually just go.

[00:50:52] Carol: long as I'm making progress toward it. Yep.

[00:50:55] Tim: so it's off, I'll flip this whole thing on its end. So have you ever experienced a time where something beat you in the butt and you realize it was to do that? You ignored

[00:51:04] Adam: I

[00:51:05] Adam: mean,

[00:51:05] Adam: uh,

[00:51:06] Carol: I feel like we all have as hard to find an example.

[00:51:10] Adam: I still have on my to-do list here, to re-install my, computer backup software on my new computer. And I that's been on my to-do list for far too long.

[00:51:20] Tim: Hopefully it doesn't bite you

[00:51:21] Tim: in the blood anytime soon.

[00:51:22] Adam: to buy.

[00:51:24] Carol: you, Tim,

[00:51:25] Tim: oh yeah, there's some security things. It's like, well, we haven't been breached, we haven't been attacked

[00:51:31] Tim: yet

[00:51:32] Tim: that we know, but it's like, yeah. So there's like things that, you know, securing some certain thing or doing some certain update that's that you just put off and then all of a sudden, now it's an emergency right now.

[00:51:43] Tim: It's now it's critical to get it on. You're like if only I had done that to do earlier, when there was time to do it than waiting when it was an emergency.

[00:51:52] Carol: The quality would have been much better. People wouldn't have been stressed.

[00:51:56] Carol: Yeah,

[00:51:57] Tim: For

[00:51:57] Carol: I get that.

[00:51:59] Ben: I've run into times. This doesn't really qualify, but I think we fall, probably run into this where you have a couple of minutes to kill before a meeting. you're like, you know what, I'll install that computer update that I've been meaning to install

[00:52:12] Ben: thinking,

[00:52:14] Adam: Right before a

[00:52:14] Ben: thinking that yeah, thinking that it'll just be done and then suddenly your computer restarts.

[00:52:19] Ben: And it's like estimated time, 25 minutes. Like I should have done that when I meant to do it earlier.

[00:52:25] Carol: Which reminds me our new hire is new to using a Mac. we've always been windows, developers. And then when we switched over where Mac, now he closed his lid last night and didn't know the update was going to say live. He closed his laptop and didn't know the update was going to be running. So he woke up in

[00:52:43] Carol: his bedroom to a very loud beeping cause his Mac was, overheated very hot and was trying to install updates

[00:52:53] Adam: Nice

[00:52:53] Tim: that's

[00:52:53] Carol: on the Mac updates or fun at night.

[00:52:56] Adam: 48. He shut the lid and like probably put it in a

[00:52:58] Carol: it

[00:52:59] Carol: Yeah. Yep. In his bedroom. So he woke up scared to his new laptop from work being,

[00:53:06] Tim: Fry an egg on it.

[00:53:08] Carol: sorry, there's just funny.

[00:53:10] Adam: Okay.

[00:53:11] Tim: So what else we have to do

[00:53:12] Patreon

[00:53:12] Adam: I was just going to say, it sounds like this is the part of the episode where I tell you that a, this episode of Working Code is brought to you by microwaving your to-do list and listeners like you. If you like what we're doing here, you might want to consider supporting us on Patreon at patreon.com/WorkingCodePod. And we do have a new patron to

[00:53:28] Carol: Yeah, we do. we

[00:53:30] Carol: do. We

[00:53:30] Adam: new, this week. Welcome Steve Weiler

[00:53:33] Tim: Hey, Steve.

[00:53:34] Adam: for the unfamiliar Patreon is a way where you can kick in a few dollars a month to support things that you like, like this podcast.

[00:53:41] Adam: And it helps keep the lights on around here and whatever else you support. and our entry-level tier starts at just $4 a month. And everybody that supports us on Patreon gets early access to new episodes and our after show. and. our undying love,

[00:53:55] Tim: Yeah, for sure.

[00:53:57] Adam: of course we need to think our top patrons, Monte and Peter.

[00:54:00] Adam: Thank you guys so much for your continued ongoing support

[00:54:03] Thanks For Listening!

[00:54:03] Adam: and, if patronizing podcast, isn't your thing. No worries. We appreciate that. You take the time to listen. if you enjoyed this episode, you should post about it on your social media, because you're word of mouth referrals help, quite a bit.

[00:54:15] Adam: So, and it would also really help us out if you could leave us a rating and review on apple podcasts. so please send us your questions and show topics on Twitter or Instagram @WorkingCodePod, or you can leave us a message on that phone. Number thing we got it's 512-253-2633 in the America.

[00:54:31] Adam: So plus one, if you're outside, that's 5 1 2, 2 5 3 code, or you can join our Discord newly public and share your ideas with us there. We're coming up on our one-year anniversary and trying to figure out exactly what we want to do for fun anniversary episode there. So if you've got some ideas, to the Discord or send us a tweet or an Instagram message.

[00:54:50] Tim: One year guys has really been

[00:54:51] Tim: one year. It's crazy.

[00:54:53] Carol: Are you, are you guys buying me a guest?

[00:54:56] Adam: Yeah. It's in the

[00:54:57] Tim: Yeah. Here you buy me

[00:54:59] Carol: Yeah. Yeah. It's paper, right? Isn't that? What you're doing? Your one year anniversary.

[00:55:03] Adam: I'll send you my old to-do list pages.

[00:55:05] Carol: Yes, I will microwave them.

[00:55:10] Adam: but we're looking for interesting ideas of things we could do for, I guess it would be our like 53rd episode would be our one year anniversary episode. Right. So, so we're coming up on that and if you've got ideas, we'd love to hear them. W one thing we're tossing around the idea of is maybe, inviting you to give us your triumphs and fails, and we can discuss

[00:55:26] Tim: oh yeah. Yeah.

[00:55:29] Adam: we'll talk about your triumphs and fails and whether you're laugh at them or just

[00:55:32] Adam: yeah, that's the idea

[00:55:34] Adam: that's, I mean, that's the whole concept of, and triumphs and fails anyway, right? Like laugh with

[00:55:38] Adam: us or give us a shoulder to cry on anyway. so yeah, all that stuff. we'll catch you next week. until then,

[00:55:45] Tim: guys, heart matters. Even if you have no, to do list,

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