Music recommendations to check out

Racking up end of the year music recs faster than I can listen to them. Will keep adding to this.

Night Owl (reggae versions of soul songs)



Entrepreneurship Future Building The Internet

Podcasts to listen to

Welcome to the intellectual dark web

The 20 hour rule

A Matter of Degrees

Added 11/22:

Fort Nisqually: Indigenous Voices

Articles of Interest: American Ivy

Fated Mates14.5: Space Romance Interstitial – There Are No Wallflowers in Space!

Left/Right: I give you permission

Added 12/22:

Getting the Big Picture on Book Revisions

Added 1/23:

The Politics of Civility


Desire paths through your website

Liked Building a Digital Homestead, Bit by Brick (

How do you create pathways (and desire paths?) through your site?

This desire paths question gets at what I’ve been trying to make happen on this website. This spring I’ve added an index to make it easier to see topics I post about frequently, and a random post plugin to inspire backwards exploration, but I still don’t feel like that accomplishes the ease of discovery and serendipity I’d like.

I also wonder if I have too many reviews mixed into the stream, disrupting the flow of other material. I might consider excluding them from the main feed — I’d have to do that via post kind, or add a new category for reviews and then exclude the category.

Getting Shit Done Learning

Personal Process Improvements

Since an exchange with Ray a couple months ago, I’ve been thinking more about my personal processes, and how ad hoc they are — and how ad hoc everyone’s personal processes are. There are all these basic tasks that we each figure out how to do our own way.

Some of that probably makes sense — that we figure out a system that works for the way we think and what we need to do — but also, probably a lot of us could have processes that work better? I certainly realized, in explaining my process for writing posts on this digital garden, that the process I’ve developed is… more steps and more complicated than it needs to be. What other processes do I have on auto-pilot that, frankly, suck?

Many systems have been developed for time and task management, and for email* — if you seek them out. How many people do?

And what about for everything else? Sure, there is no one answer that will work for everyone, but how many of us have created Rube Goldberg workflows unintentionally?

We focus so much on which tools to use that we often overlook how we use them in the big picture. There are tutorials on how to accomplish XYZ task using a tool, but not so much piecing it together into a whole process. (Or maybe I’m reading the wrong blogs.) (I do recall noticing Photo Cascadia sharing some photography workflows.) I’ve included a few of my favorite “mental tools” (e.g. kanban, travel binder, card ) tangential to my processes on my “uses” page.


Website changes to make

I think I’ll add some content and try out some plugins at IndieWeb Create Day this Saturday:

I’d like to make the site more browseable, with more happy accidents and serendipity.

I might change the tags page to only show those used 5+ times rather than 3+. I might also figure out how to show categories and kinds on that page.

Might also be a good time to finally think through a process for reviewing and synthesizing notes from the mind garden.

I might add my resume.

(Thanks to Ray for some suggestions for plugins to try.)

Getting Shit Done Personal Growth

The reckoning of the to-do list

Quoted Hundreds of Ways to Get S#!+ Done—and We Still Don’t by Clive Thompson (WIRED)

You want to be productive. Software wants to help. But even with a glut of tools claiming to make us all into taskmasters, we almost never master our tasks.

a to-do list is, ultimately, nothing more or less than an attempt to persuade yourself.

— Clive Thompson

I fit the description in this article: I’ve tried so many different systems and software — Toodledo, Trello (currently using), Sunsama (time blocking blended with to do list), kanban (currently using-ish), GTD, off the top of my head.

I think the author’s onto something with the idea that what we really need, rather than the perfect tracking system, is prioritization and realism about how much we can accomplish. I am getting better at separating my self worth from my productivity but I think that mindset is common in our society. This is what 4000 Weeks is getting at: that we must accept we cannot get it all done. That we must choose.

And if we leave the choosing to our daily selves we get caught up in urgency rather than importance. With that in mind I’ve started to book myself an hour a week at work for “big picture” strategic work. We’ll see how well that works!

Another key thing I’ve realized over the years is that in my life overall, energy and not time is the limiting factor. Remembering and making time to work on long term projects, and finding the activation energy of getting started are my main hurdles.


Earthquake Safety Retrofits

Bookmarked Seismic Solutions (Simpson Strong-Tie Site)

Seismic Solutions | Simpson Strong-Tie

Washington resources: – online classes

Growing up in California, earthquakes weigh on me. I was really little for the Loma Prieta earthquake but I remember taking my duplos outside to wait for aftershocks.

My dad saw our crawl space and was horrified by the lack of earthquake safety, so it’s been on my mental to-do list to have a seismic retrofit done, but it keeps dropping to the bottom of the list.

We watched part of a documentary about The Big One that we’re due for in my lifetime. Living on a subduction zone is mildly disconcerting. Nothing much for a thousand years, then a magnitude 9 earthquake. I think winter storms have been a preview that we’re not ready for a disaster like that.

Would a seismic retrofit really protect us from a quake that big? Maybe…

House Lifestyle

Household Changes to Make in 2022

“[V]alue the ease of putting something away above the ease of finding it…”Organizing Solutions for People with ADHD by Susan C. Pinsky

To Do

Stuff to Set Up

  • Name the kitchen shelves
  • Install hooks for jackets / hats / robes / towels in bedroom, bathrooms, by front door
  • Create an Active Paperwork area
  • Replace toilet paper holders with ones without a spring to load
  • Get lidless, clear plastic tubs or open- front stacking bins to corral items

Habit Change

  • Designate a spot in the house that’s allowed to always be messy
  • Buy only items for which you have an imminent plan or need
  • Designate a weekly time for admin


The Art of Showing Up by Rachel Wilkerson Miller:

  • What messy, cluttered, or dirty areas in your home make you feel bad or make life more difficult?
  • What specifically makes you low-key mad every single day?
  • What gets in the way of cooking?
  • What causes tension?
  • What makes it harder to engage in or enjoy the other things you care about?
  • Rate how you feel about each chore on a scale of 1 to 10

Organizing Solutions for People with ADHD by Susan C. Pinsky:

  • Can I find what I need? Where would a stranger look for this?
  • Is this storage conveniently located? Where does this item most often get used?
  • Is it easy to retrieve and put away? How can I make it more visible?
  • Does this storage require little or no maintenance?
  • How can I change this room so I can tidy it in 2 minutes?

Designing a joyful home:

  • What kinds of moments do I want more of in my life?
  • Where specifically do those happen?
  • How can I change my house to create opportunity for more of those moments?
Getting Shit Done Resources and Reference

Improving Gmail

I’ve kind of given up on escaping Gmail but it’s still not ideal for me functionally – so maybe worth some tinkering. My challenge in Outlook is that out of sight is out of mind so I keep everything in my inbox unless it’s reference; in Gmail I don’t like labels (ironically since they are like tags on a blog). For being a search engine I find the search function in Gmail to be not super great.

Getting Shit Done

DIY Business Card To Do Lists

Bookmarked Elliot Jay Stocks | Getting things done with TODAY ▼ + SOON ▶ (Elliot Jay Stocks)

Elliot Jay Stocks: designer, musician, writer, speaker. Co-founder of Lagom, founder of 8 Faces, music-maker as Other Form.

Clever idea to DIY a custom printed paper to do list not full sheet size using business cards. I too was attracted by Ugmonk’s Analog system but not sold enough to buy it despite its well thought out design. But, I’m not convinced a business card is large enough for me, my writing tends to be larger and longer.