The Daily Review, Read, Review, and Question Answer Routine

UPDATE 7/22/2019: I’ve added a survey to attempt to collect more options. Please fill out this quick survey ~(30 seconds) so that I can build up a larger list of options derived from the community. Thanks!

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I’ve started trying out a “punch list” to go through on a daily basis. It’s one of the first things I do in the day as a way to get into topics of discussion and also the workflow for the day. There’s also a “checklist” that I go through on a weekly basis, thanks to head honcho Jeff Carpenter @jscarp, that he has brought into our team’s weekly SITREP.

I use the term “punch list” because sometimes it gives me that “I wanna punch something” level of frustration. The “check list” on the contrary is more a list of intended accomplishments and ongoing accomplishments. First of the two, here’s the punch list.

Daily Punch List

Each of these sections I try to time box in 5 to 20 minutes at the most. If there’s more I can answer, or help out with I might go a little longer, but otherwise I try to keep it concise and to the point for each list item.

The first site I check out these days is the DataStax Community site. I go through, answer questions, or just give a good look at anything new or conversations that are going on.

Next up to bat is Stackoverflow. The first 4 topics I’m aiming to cover everyday include these, but I’ll admit so far I’ve trampled off into the weeds on the topics.

I routinely then click through on the “unanswered” too just to see if I can help out and provide some answers. I don’t always visit every single day, but try to every other day or so. I take a look at the main page and then look at any new comments, questions on my own blog entries, or whatever else that might have come up. Then I also give a look at any blog posts or other entries others have written that seem interesting and are a quick read. Finally, if I’ve got any ready, I post a blog entry or two myself. The other sites that I generally tend to do the same process for I’ve included below too.

Some of the other sites I dive into on an almost daily basis, or am trying to on an almost daily basis, include the following.

The last two sites I check into and read, comment, or otherwise on an almost daily basis include DZone and Medium. I try to make semi-frequent posts here too but that doesn’t happen to often these days. However the content tends to be pretty solid on the technical front.

These are the higher value daily punch list items, then there is the high value low value items of pure social media: LinkedIn and Twitter. These two sites can be vast and total wastes of time if not used right. They’re almost as bad as Facebook, which at this point I largely ignore.

  • LinkedIn – For LinkedIn the content needs specific call to actions, appropriate link and images, ideally a good URI to follow through, and of course good content. This way LinkedIn can actually be super useful for rallying coders to open source projects, finding out what others are working on, and any and all other curiosities that can – if used right – provide positive value.
  • Twitter – Twitter, number one priority these days is to avoid the political garbage fire and troll trash since it’s a complete and utter waste of time. However, Twitter can and does still provide an excellent way to follow key figures in the industry, keep up with trends and find out about events for example. Using it for such, and providing a valuable stream of such content makes Twitter a solid investment.

NOTE: When I say I ignore Facebook now because of low value, I’m talking about maybe 5-10 minutes of use PER MONTH! Facebook is an extremely low return site for software development and related technology industry efforts these days. Avoid it like one would avoid the plague!

You might have noticed I didn’t put Twitch on this list, that’s because it isn’t on the punch list but a fundamental element of my day to day coding efforts. For more on it check out my repo and corresponding blog entry from a few weeks back.

Weekly Checklist

The checklist for the week involves a few questions that when answered provide a solid basis for direction for the week and a short list of accomplishments to discuss:

  1. What am I learning?
  2. What development am I working on?
  3. What’s coming out next?
  4. What’s the next event?

What am I learning? – This should be answered with anything from high level “I’m learning physics” down to tactical things like “I’m figuring out how to run concurrent go routines to better handle messaging between node instances I’m running.”.

What development am I working on? – As a developer advocate I aim to make sure a significant bulk of my day to day activities is centered around doing actual software development work. That can be on actual internal repositories of code, open source project, or some other variant coding option. Whatever the case, whatever I’ve found to work on that can help add value in some way is what becomes the answer to this question.

What’s coming out next? – For this answer I tend to look at upcoming blog entries, conference talks, releases of software I’ve been working on, and almost anything else that is getting released by me, or that I’ve been involved in that will be released. This sometimes matches the next events too when I’m the one hosting and organizing the event.

What’s the next event? – This answer can be anything from “no event this week” to a “I’m attending/hosting/crashing a cool meetup on topic X” or “releasing X feature from Y project”. Something along these notions.

That’s that, so what’s your flow for getting started every day? What’s the routine for checking in with your world and network?

Until next time, happy thrashing code! \m/

Use or Read RSS Feeds Still? Here’s Your Tech Blogs

This is another one of those lists I’ve started putting together. I wanted to get it out there to the public. It all started with Hadi @HHariri converting his blog from WordPress to Jekyll using Github Pages. I’ve wanted to get a solid list of top blogs. One’s that have great content, solid writing, technical and mixed topics of tech, leadership and related to technology blogs. If you’re not reading blogs these days, now is as good a time as any to click the Feedly logo to the right and go get subscribing and reading! If you are reading some blogs, add them to the list!

To check out Hadi’s blog navigate over to For a kick start yourself, check out my entry on Bringing it All Together, Bringing to Life an Open Source Software Project via Github & Jekyll – Part 1.

To help out with the blog list, add a blog or three that you read regularly. Cheers and thanks!

Lists of Lists of Lists: Conferences

RICON 2012
RICON 2012

This is the first in a series (AKA a list) of lists that I’m researching and putting together. I’ve had many questions in the last few weeks for “cool conferences”, “awesome hackathons”, “meetups” and “conferences that are worth the time” and related. So here’s the conferences list so far, I’ll be adding more on my conferences page over time. If you’re looking for the most updated list, check out that page. Here’s what others & I have collected so far. Thanks to everyone on twitter, facebook and those other places we’ve discussed conferences:

Github: @adron
Github: @adron

Developer Conferences

  • Qcon London
  • Qcon San Francisco
  • HTML 5 Developers Conference
  • Web 2.0
  • Velocity Conf Beijing
  • Velocity Conf Santa Clara
  • Strata Conf Santa Clara
  • Strata Conf London
  • Strata Conf Boston
  • Strata + Hadoop World (NYC)

    OSCON (Red Hat table)
    OSCON (Red Hat table)
  • Fluent Conf (San Francisco, CA)
  • Portland Code Camp
  • Seattle Code Camp
  • San Francisco Code Camp
  • Node Conf
  • Node Summit
  • Node PDX
  • Ruby on Rails Conf
  • Cascadia Ruby Conf
  • Strangeloop
  • Defrag / Glue
  • Mobile Web Development Conference
  • Mozilla Festival

    Checking out awesome new tech with Dave McCrory at VMworld
    Checking out awesome new tech with Dave McCrory at VMworld
  • RubyWorld Conference
  • Software Craftsmanship
  • Øredev
  • Monktoberfest
  • Symposium on OS Design and Implementation (OSDI)
  • USENIX Conference on File and Storage Technologies (FAST)
  • High Performance Transaction Systems (HPTS)
  • ACM Symposium on OS Principles (SOSP)
  • BUILD 2012
  • Railsberry
  • Mix12 – Microsoft
  • RealtimeConf
  • Azure Conf
  • DeployCon
  • AWS re: Invent
  • Cloudbeat
  • Structure
  • CloudConnect
  • TacoConf

To add to this list, check out the Google Docs Worksheet I’ve setup or check out the conferences page. The later I will update regularly whenever there are updates to the Google Docs Spreadsheet.

I don’t often ask for RT, tumblr, reddit or other links, but would love to see how big the list can become, so if you have a second please link it, retweet it, like it on facebook or Google+ and get it out there. Thanks!

Updated on Wednesday the 7th of November, 1:37pm 2012
Last Updated 4:41pm on Wednesday the 7th, November of 2012. For the most up to date list check out the conferences page.