I just found out that Project Rethink is now listed on http://innovation.alltop.com. To celebrate, I thought I would explain my recent frustrations with Guy Kawasaki, one of the co-founders of Alltop.
10-15 years ago I would find a newspaper, maybe grab a magazine or two, and I would read about the news. I had one email address (it was a Juno account)–which was checked maybe 3-4 times a week. But that was enough, only a handful of people were even aware of its existence.
8 years ago I downloaded music for the first time. I remember my first MP3 data disk CD player. Crafting the perfect playlist that fit on a single CD took skill. It was a great waste of time.
The iPod was released about 6 years ago (though I wasn’t able to afford one until early 2004). Suddenly all of my music followed me everywhere I went.
Gmail Beta launched June 21st, 2004 as invite only; I received my invitation some time late 2004. By this point I had 4-5 email address–two for work, one for school, and a couple more for friends.
By mid 2005 I had about 8 email accounts, 2 blogs, and a music library that followed me everywhere. Add this to the time I spent checking my favorite websites everyday and it becomes clear why I needed some “GTD” guidance.
Then I had a little help in the form of RSS Feeds. I was able to cut down my surfing time by checking RSS feeds. I was disappointed in a way. Once I got into the habit of checking feeds, my need for “surfing” the Internet was eliminated. I could sit down an in only a few short minutes be caught up on all of the news in the world that mattered to me. I didn’t have to find the news, it came to me.
As time passed I accumulated a few more websites, and a few more email addresses, which resulted in some new anti-GTD techniques. The time I wasn’t spending on surfing my favorite sites was now spent on trying to stay on top of my email.
Well Apple took care of that with the iPhone. Honestly, having my email with me 24/7 has been both a curse and blessing. Between the cell phone, email, IM, facebook, or twitter–there is always a way to get a hold of me.
So now I sit down at my computer and listen to my favorite songs (or songs suggested to me by either Pandora or a Genius Playlist). I have no reason to surf the Internet because of RSS feeds. I have no reason to check my email because it is has been with me throughout the day. Between Adium and Skype, I have more than 50 contacts scattered across the globe, only a click away.
Discovering new websites was my only hope for a little anti-GTD. Browsing wikipedia, following the blogrolls of my peers. Trying to find the next nugget of information that would interest me.
I love browsing through mac.alltop.com, innovation.alltop.com, ui.alltop.com, photography.alltop.com, even coffee.alltop.com. I don’t need to hunt, browse, or worry about feeds. Everything important to me is easily accessible with the addition of some new and interesting hand-picked resources.
So thanks Guy. Thank you for doing (and continuing to do) all of the hard work for me and giving me a reason to get back to work. I really appreciate it.