Category Archives: Research

Basket full of info 1

Interest Hoarding or The Basket by my Bed

I have a very bad habit of interest-hoarding.  What this means is that I have a seemingly endless appetite for things I would like to be doing, reading, or making at any given time, and this list of things is invariably far too long for the number of hours in the day, week, or even my lifetime that it would take to actually delve very deeply into any of them.

So rather than make little piles around my bedroom, (which is really also my home office.  True Confession: my favourite workspace is in bed, lots of pillows, surrounded by input devices which includes:  a 13″ MacBook air.  An iPad mini.  An iPhone 5 – yes, I suffer from an unhealthy alliance to all things Apple – and a notebook.  Well, also a stack of blank index cards and a sharpie.  And maybe some yellow stickie notes.  But I digress.) I keep one basket beside the bed.  Into this basket I place a limited number of things that I would like to attend to during the week.  If, by the end of the week, I have not attended to those things, they may lose their spot in the basket in favour of a new [book/project/magazine/insert-interest-hoarder-appropriate nugget here]

It is an effort to contain the hoard to one limited space: a mini interest hoard, if you will.

What I am going to do is describe the contents of the basket at the beginning of each week. Why would I do this?  Doesn’t this sound suspiciously self-indulgent, akin to posting pictures of plates of food on Instagram?  Perhaps.  But I have 3 good reasons:

1) This will force me to be selective of the items that ‘make it’ into the basket.  Knowing that these mini information hoards are going to be public, they may become more realistic and less aspirational.

2) Taking a photo of my basket each week will keep me honest in terms of actually diving in and reading/writing/otherwise engaging with/ the information hoard

3) There may be some interesting reads in the basket and a mini review of those reads might be of interest to you.

And so: this first introductory week’s Interest Hoard, the Basket by my Bed, contains

  • a knitting project: a pair of socks, knitted two-at-a-time on one 40″ Addi Sock Rocket circular needle, in Noro Taiyo Sock colorway S8
  • SAMS Teach Yourself Python in 24 Hours: I’ve recently taken a couple of great MOOC’s on Python programming and am determined to write a little code every day.  So far I’m batting about 10.
  • The Happiness Project: a gift received this Xmas from my Q Media Solutions Secret Santa, the very capable Steven Field.  This is a great read for the new year.  It’s very easy to pick it up and power through a chapter in wait times or those moments between doing other things when I should be blogging.
  • My Notebook.  Latest entry: My Git repository login and a wireframe for this blog.
  • Magazines:  wow, I have…how many issues of Rotman Magazine??  It would be a miracle if I read even one article from one of these bad boys during the week.  However, one of the most useful articles I have read in a long while was an interview in Rotman with Aaron Shapiro on his book “Users not Customers”.  I bought the book, and even read the book. Shapiro makes a compelling case for how we really need to adapt our businesses, business models, and communication styles to the internet.  This is a very useful argument for me in my line of work and some of this thinking formed the foundation for our video series, “Pull”.

Okay, so that’s not even everything.  Week 1 lesson learned: An interest Hoard is only useful inasmuch as it is actually small enough to tackle.  Note to self: cull the hoard.  Stay tuned for The Basket by My Bed, part deux.  And tell me: what’s in your hoard?