MicroISVs live, breath and swim in a supersaturated solution of information, so I’m always on the lookout for new/better ways of coping, especially tips from people I respect. Hope springs eternal that someone, somewhere, other than Tim Ferriss, has mastered the art of staying on the crest of the Info Wave day after day, month after month.
Google Blogoscoped is one of those blogs I rss to keep up to date for hat #5 (writing for Web Worker Daily). They have good stuff. So today when I saw, Tips for Dealing with Information Overload with advice from the likes of Matt Cutts and Noam Chomsky, my hopes rose that this bunch of smart people might have some really good insight I could grab.
Alas, there’s no magic bullet, app, technique, incantation, RSS reader or email filter. Of the 14 tips, most are common email/rss sense, a few illuminaries confess to information bankruptcy and Dave Winer plays Merry Prankster.
Here’s the best tip of the lot. It’s brutal, but it’s so right:
Shelley Powers, Burningbird.net: «Frankly, the people who are having problems with information overflow are people who want the information overflow. We’re all big boys and girls here. We don’t need specialized technology or social gurus to tell us when we’ve subscribed to too many feeds, or are on too many social networks. We don’t need calendaring software to tell us when we’ve taken on more work than we can handle. What we need to do is prioritize the demands on our attention, and when we find ourselves overwhelmed, lop off the bottom distractions.
In all honesty, people who talk about how “noisy” their lives are one moment, while extolling the virtues of Twitter for FriendFeed the next would be the first distractions to go, and easily. Other distractions may be more difficult to drop, but if we want to be known for something other than “she gave great Twitter”, we have to make the decision, and live with the loss.»
If you spend more time on your email/rss feeds than you do building your microISV/startup (Bad Developer, Bad!), give this post a quick read, check out the page I have on GTD at 47hats.com. And give yourself a pat on the back for wading through another week of Too Much Information in no worse condition than some of the brighter lights on the net.