Archive for April, 2013

The Legitimacy – or Otherwise – of Ultra-brief Emails

Posted on April 18th, 2013 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion, Individual Solutions, Organizational Solutions

A devious solution to email overload A friend pointed me to a post  that offered a simple and highly unusual solution to email overload: change the signature block on your desktop email client to read “Sent from my iPhone”. The idea, the writer explained, is that this will make you “feel more comfortable offering short, direct, and concise replies to incoming emails, thus improving your email productivity and freeing up time to do other more important work”. This is certainly devious, is probably effective, and the logic seems unassailable… but it raises a question: why would you need it? Surely.. Read more

How to Secure the Isolation You Need to Be Effective

Posted on April 10th, 2013 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion, Individual Solutions

The acclaimed American novelist Jonathan Franzen has an unusual way of ensuring he can concentrate and be creative. To quote the NY Times: Some days, Jonathan Franzen wrote in the dark. He did so in a Spartan studio … behind soundproof walls and a window of double-paned glass. The blinds were drawn. The lights were off. And Franzen … wore earplugs, earmuffs and a blindfold. Kudos to the Franzen for being a touch typist, but here I want to focus on his statement: “It’s very, very hard to concentrate. You have to hold your mind free of all the clichés”… Read more

CAPTCHA: A Wonderful Adventure in Exhibition Space

Posted on April 7th, 2013 · Posted in Off-topic

Somehow my career has repeatedly led me into doing unexpected and wonderful things. One such piece of serendipity has been the role I landed at the Jerusalem Science Museum as the curator of an exhibition in honor of Alan Turing. This project took a year and half, and gave me the occasion to work with some amazing people at the museum, interact with many more from around the world, and learn so much about that tragic genius, Alan Turing, of which I wrote here before. Now we’re finally done, and the exhibition is open to the public. It wasn’t my.. Read more