I love task queues; for someone who context-switches as much as I do (both mentally and in terms of physical location), they are ways to keep the switching overhead as low as possible. It's easy to get a clear picture of exactly what to do next. That having been said, I've been struggling to find, triage, and clear a few of my task queues lately, so I thought I'd ramble for a bit on progress so as to get my head clear on what I'm trying to do.

First are the physical queues, which are (now that I have a few days in Boston) rapidly being cleared. For instance:

  • My room now has a floor again (the "stuff Mel needs to pick up and put in its proper place" queue)
  • My laundry's almost done (the "clean clothes" queue)
  • I need to triage and deal with my mail. There are disadvantages to frequent travel; I have tons of scholarly journal back-issues to read now - and should really just start taking these things on the plane with me instead of having to stare at the Skymall catalog and be bored. Haven't started on this one yet.

Then there are my FOSS project queues.

  • Fedora Marketing - I'm going to be clearing this queue before Tuesday's meeting (in other words, "what is Mel doing Tuesday morning?")
  • Fedora Infrastructure, which has a single ticket that is blocked, so I'm basically set on this one.
  • Sugar Labs. A good chunk of these are due to my utter inability to maintain the IRC Activity well - when we make the SoaS Activity Inclusion Critera for the upcoming v4, I will use that as a target motivation for charging through cleaning that stuff up. The others on that list that I should have are related to SoaS. I need... to triage myself out of a bunch of the rest, and then just start working on stuff. I think the weekly SoaS meetings will help with this.
  • OLPC (I had 2 tickets but I just cleared them - they referred to builds that were years out of date. Now I have 0 tickets in this tracker. Yay!)
  • TracBacks, my Trac plugin, which is also woefully unmaintained. It's mostly an activation energy issue; most of these bugs aren't hard, it's just that I no longer have that dev/testing environment set up and have no motivation to set it up again right now. This is something I need shoulder-surfing on... if someone were to want to, say, learn about Trac plugins by helping me work through these for a day, I'd totally take the time to walk them through a dev environment setup (thereby recreating my own) and all that. But in the absence of that, I just... don't... do it. Any takers who want to kick my ass to do something on this?

Then there are my projects that should have queues and don't (or don't have clear ones). In other words, my queue of queues to make.

  • Plover
  • CFS SoaS deployment (I really need an infrastructure to-do list for this.)
  • Operation: Finances!
  • Operation: Being Healthy! (I know the first ticket is "actually get a doctor and see them about this cough that's been around for nearly 2 months now")
  • Operation: Music! (mostly working on the "guitar" component right now)

Yeah, that's a lot of queues. Once I have them, I can manage and reduce them. I guess I do try to run my life like an engineering project when I get overwhelmed. It doesn't always work. Lest you think I'm actually disciplined, I'm not - I usually run through life as a mad improvisation most if not all of the time - it's just that when I go "oh my gosh what do I do now flailflailflail" this is how I structure my thinking about figuring that out.