Mar 11, 2010

A new workflow.. and other (seemingly) trivial things!

Sometimes, I post updates about how certain changes have greatly affected me. I hope these updates help you learn something new and useful too. Last weekend, I changed my workflow – and the outcome has been dramatic.

SONY DSC

Anyone who knows me personally, knows that I use feed reader applications in time-blocks through the day to keep myself updated about current trends everywhere. I use both Google Reader and Feedly in various ways. If you don’t know what a feed reader is, don’t panic. The concept is quite simple. Here’s a short intro courtesy Wikipedia.

In computing, a feed aggregator, also known as a feed reader, news reader, rss reader or simply aggregator, is client software or a Web application which aggregates syndicated web content such as news headlines, blogs, podcasts, and vlogs in a single location for easy viewing. Aggregators reduce the time and effort needed to regularly check websites for updates, creating a unique information space or "personal newspaper". Once subscribed to a feed, an aggregator is able to check for new content at user-determined intervals and retrieve the update.

If you’re still not clear about the concept, read this Newbie’s guide

 

I’ve been using feed readers for years now. They help me stay up to date about things I’m interested in. Many of this blog’s popular articles like “The Apple that ate the Child”, “A new kind of Supply Chain Risk” and “A green and sustainable Wal-Mart” were written because of news I got through my feed sources. But this has its inherent disadvantages. I’m interested in way too many things. Most of these websites end up publishing over 20 articles (usually news tid-bits) a day. This ends up leaving way too much information for me to consume, increasing number of unread items everyday and last I checked, something I used to enjoy had become a chore. Last weekend, I started a massive reorganization. Here’s all I did in the space of a couple of hours.

  • Created a new Google Account for SCM related feeds.
  • Got rid of over 10 feeds that I hardly visited.
  • Moved all my SCM/Supply Chain related feeds onto the new account.
  • Organized remaining feeds into seven different categories: Workflow (8), Blogging Tips (2), Casual (9), Finance (4), Humor (2), Mobile (4) and Tech (7)
  • The result is a grand total of 36 subscriptions (down from 50- something), organized into relevant buckets.

Also, as fodder for thoughts to use in this blog, I’ve started building a (massive) database of Supply Chain Related blogs on my new Google account. I like to think that I have the most comprehensive list of blogs in the field – but I continue to find newer ones everyday. For the moment, I’m focusing on blogs that are being updated regularly.

 

I’ve classified them into just 4 categories for the sake of simplicity. Company Blogs (9), Educational (1), Green (2) and Personal Blogs (20). I continue to add to this list of 32 subscriptions. I’ve also decided to use Feedly which is a magazine-styled feed reader to consume my Supply Chain feeds. It helps me be more efficient while consuming large amounts of information.

 

Apart from this, I’ve also joined the Kinaxis Supply Chain Community. If you’re a supply chain professional, I think this is a good place to share ideas about SCM. It has several of the industry’s key thinkers blogging and taking part in discussions. I’ve made it my browser’s start page so that the first few minutes every time I open my browser are spent contributing to discussions. I’ve also started using different browsers – so my personal stuff is on Google Chrome, while my Supply Chain websites, feeds and the like are open on Mozilla Firefox.

 

These are all small changes to my workflow and I’ve just tested them out a few days. But I’m noticing massive improvements in speed and efficiency already. I’m not getting bogged down by information overload and can concentrate and use the information better. Hope you found at least some of the information useful. Do let me know what you think. Do you want me to share more information like this in future? Or did you find this particularly irrelevant and uninteresting? Write to me.

Mar 11, 2010

A new workflow.. and other (seemingly) trivial things!

Sometimes, I post updates about how certain changes have greatly affected me. I hope these updates help you learn something new and useful too. Last weekend, I changed my workflow – and the outcome has been dramatic.

SONY DSC

Anyone who knows me personally, knows that I use feed reader applications in time-blocks through the day to keep myself updated about current trends everywhere. I use both Google Reader and Feedly in various ways. If you don’t know what a feed reader is, don’t panic. The concept is quite simple. Here’s a short intro courtesy Wikipedia.

In computing, a feed aggregator, also known as a feed reader, news reader, rss reader or simply aggregator, is client software or a Web application which aggregates syndicated web content such as news headlines, blogs, podcasts, and vlogs in a single location for easy viewing. Aggregators reduce the time and effort needed to regularly check websites for updates, creating a unique information space or "personal newspaper". Once subscribed to a feed, an aggregator is able to check for new content at user-determined intervals and retrieve the update.

If you’re still not clear about the concept, read this Newbie’s guide

 

I’ve been using feed readers for years now. They help me stay up to date about things I’m interested in. Many of this blog’s popular articles like “The Apple that ate the Child”, “A new kind of Supply Chain Risk” and “A green and sustainable Wal-Mart” were written because of news I got through my feed sources. But this has its inherent disadvantages. I’m interested in way too many things. Most of these websites end up publishing over 20 articles (usually news tid-bits) a day. This ends up leaving way too much information for me to consume, increasing number of unread items everyday and last I checked, something I used to enjoy had become a chore. Last weekend, I started a massive reorganization. Here’s all I did in the space of a couple of hours.

  • Created a new Google Account for SCM related feeds.
  • Got rid of over 10 feeds that I hardly visited.
  • Moved all my SCM/Supply Chain related feeds onto the new account.
  • Organized remaining feeds into seven different categories: Workflow (8), Blogging Tips (2), Casual (9), Finance (4), Humor (2), Mobile (4) and Tech (7)
  • The result is a grand total of 36 subscriptions (down from 50- something), organized into relevant buckets.

Also, as fodder for thoughts to use in this blog, I’ve started building a (massive) database of Supply Chain Related blogs on my new Google account. I like to think that I have the most comprehensive list of blogs in the field – but I continue to find newer ones everyday. For the moment, I’m focusing on blogs that are being updated regularly.

 

I’ve classified them into just 4 categories for the sake of simplicity. Company Blogs (9), Educational (1), Green (2) and Personal Blogs (20). I continue to add to this list of 32 subscriptions. I’ve also decided to use Feedly which is a magazine-styled feed reader to consume my Supply Chain feeds. It helps me be more efficient while consuming large amounts of information.

 

Apart from this, I’ve also joined the Kinaxis Supply Chain Community. If you’re a supply chain professional, I think this is a good place to share ideas about SCM. It has several of the industry’s key thinkers blogging and taking part in discussions. I’ve made it my browser’s start page so that the first few minutes every time I open my browser are spent contributing to discussions. I’ve also started using different browsers – so my personal stuff is on Google Chrome, while my Supply Chain websites, feeds and the like are open on Mozilla Firefox.

 

These are all small changes to my workflow and I’ve just tested them out a few days. But I’m noticing massive improvements in speed and efficiency already. I’m not getting bogged down by information overload and can concentrate and use the information better. Hope you found at least some of the information useful. Do let me know what you think. Do you want me to share more information like this in future? Or did you find this particularly irrelevant and uninteresting? Write to me.