Thursday, October 25, 2007

When technology takes over

Most of you know by now that I'm sort of a techno-geek at heart. I usually either have the latest gadgets, or at the very least have read their reviews (and probably have snuck into the store to sample them!) And although I'm not the world's greatest programmer or software developer, I usually know enough to customize whatever it is I'm working on.

As I started blogging last year, I also started reading other people's blogs. Over time, I had so many blogs I enjoyed reading that I started using Google's Reader, which aggregates everybody's new articles into one place for me, where I can skim through them to keep up with what's interesting and important. I had been reading blogs on all types of topics: real estate, mortgage lending, landscaping, interior design, technology, general business, general news, and more! It was a great way to keep up with lots of information, and it took me about an hour per day.

On October 1st I had surgery on my thumb. It took a day or two to recover, and even longer before I felt proficient on my keyboard (I'm still not 100%). So due to a lack of time and a lack of interest for typing, I stopped opening my Reader.

Now that I'm getting back into the swing of things again, my Google Reader has over 750 unread blog posts waiting for my attention! I don't know whether I'm going to read them all or just hit the "reset" button and start over, or even if I'll go back to reading them at all..

The bigger question is, did that technology make me better, or more efficient? Or did it just manage to steal an hour from me each day? Realistically, I think it made me better – it's a great way to be informed and educated across industries and locations. But at the same time, I took a month off and didn't really miss it!

The most successful people know that you don't have to keep doing something just because you've done it in the past. This is a great thought exercise; the time away from my computer gave me a fresh perspective. I'm going to chew on this one for a few days; maybe I'll post an update if I have a break-through idea...

- Chris Butterworth

[tags] blogging, Google Reader, efficiency, best practice [/tags]