Browser Tabs Amnesty Day

As per my post the other day, about browser tabs being used as sort of ‘to do’ or ‘come back to later’ lists, I’ve decided to actually go back through mine and properly free up the space and do some filing. I’m calling a Browser Tabs Amnesty Day. 

It’s a chance to exorcise all those tabbed intentions and actually make notes and actions where needed. Here’s what I’ve got (that was actually relevant when I went back through all 33, in chronological order from the top / oldest), minus a few that were no longer really relevant, and some others that were a bit private:

1. Curiosity Depends on What You Already Know. This was ‘read later’ for sure but I can’t remember now how I came across it. I do sometimes leave a tab open rather than sending to Evernote with a ‘read later’ tab as I know I’m even worse with getting back to those things than tabs. Maybe the reason for leaving tabs open is to deliberately annoy ourselves, like writing on the back of a hand. 

2. Benefit Management. I left this Google Search open as I was intending again to read more after wondering if the term was a thing (when thinking how risk management feels a tad short sighted and pessimistic to be focusing on alone). Turned out that benefit management is indeed a thing, that I wanted to read more about.

3. The case for free Money. I wanted to reference this in relation to an old idea we played with at With Associates. Also out of genuine interest in the pending reality of there needing to be a universal basic income. Saved for later. 

4. Geert Hofstede and how values in the workplace are influenced by culture. Interested here just in his research into cultural difference in the way we think and see the world. This in relevance to calling myself an ‘interaction designer’ with awareness that I only ever really design for the ways that I think and perceive. I’m interested to see if it’s possible to make something truly universally understood. I think that finding this came along the same time as wondering about the old “You can’t please all the people all the time” saying, and thinking if the more truthful thing to realise is just that “You can’t please all the people.” Pick and group and please it. 

5. The More You Know, public service announcements. These sounding interesting and I wanted to know more! Sounds along the lines of the ‘inform’ part of the BBC’s mission. Makes me think too of the public safety adverts that they used to have on British TV in the 80s. I remember a cartoon about a man and his wife eating and swimming. A kid retrieving his Frisbee from a power station and in the Westcountry we had the Tufty Club and a jazzy 

6. How breakfast became a thing. One for read later and for point people to when they say I’m odd for not really doing breakfast. It’s just a made up meal!

7. Professor A C Grayling’s letter to all 650 MPs urging Parliament not to support a motion to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty. I had hight hopes about all this a while back. Clearly this tab was left open for wishful thinking. 

8. Tim Harford the Undercover Economist. I just meant to read more of his writings after quite enjoying his books and radio work. Actually I think I planned to subscribe to his RSS. 

9. Romney Hythe and Dymchurch railway. Was planning to find out more about this and take my kids. So good when you can enjoy and are keen to indulge their interests!

8. Michael Crichton: Why Speculate? Odd source of a transcript from a talk he gave in 2005 that mentions the ‘Murray Gell-Mann Amnesia effect’ of which I’m so fond. Kept open to read on holiday. 

9. The National Autistic Society’s position on the MMR vaccine. Interested to see their take on it. Nice to see it so clear. 

10. List of Dyslexic Achievers: Andy Warhol. I saw some his old work on holiday and was struck by some familiar looking spelling mistakes, wondering if he was dyslexic I found this, suggesting that he was. Another one for the team. Dyslexics Untie! 

11. The Dyslexic and Creative Mind. After reading about Andy I meant to read more and come back to the subject again. I’ve not researched it for a few years and wondered if there were any new takes of theories about it all. 

12. The Structure, Format, Content, and Style of a Journal-Style Scientific Paper. Researching researching techniques while looking for more ways to assess the quality of research (again, see point 9 above and know that there is a lot of “research” that still thinks otherwise. 

13. The Basics – How To Write A Science Experiment, Chemistry or Biology Report. More on point 12. 

14. SWT Fence Post – 3.6m 100mm x 100mm (12ft 4×4). Planning to build something in the garden for the kids. These looked big and sturdy.

15. Infrared camera conversion. Been looking into UV camera conversions.  

16. Auto Bottle Opener Safety Seat Belt Buckle Clip Insert Alarm Clasp Stopper. Take a while to read that and take in what it means. People are making and selling a device that is designed to stop seatbelt alarms going off, so that people don’t have to wear a seatbelt, and it doubles as a bottle opener, for beer presumably… The existence of this is one of the single saddest things I’ve seen in a while.

17. Winchester 12ft x 8ft (3.65m x 2.50m) Large Garden Room. Been looking at sheds for my Mum.

18. Steven Novella. Learned about him and the skeptical movement and wanted to read more. 

19. Understanding Health Research. A tool for making sense of health studies. Back again to points 9, 12, 13 and 18. There is a lot in science reporting and understanding, and understanding in general that I’m intrigued by at the moment and this new tool looks perfectly placed to help what looks like an epidemic of people not understanding the things that researchers are researching. Re-reading Bad Science has been a big part of this thinking also. 

20. The Man in Seat Sixty-One … Heard about this before but forgot to check it out. 

21. More bad science in the service of the discredited idea that vaccines cause autism. One last one of them.

22. Ben Goldacre made this Radio 4 documentary on randomised trials on government policy. And I’ve been meaning to listen to the end. 

This felt quite good. Think I’ll try and do it again, or at least find a way to better document pages and what I’m interested about in them. Feels like it could be an ‘easy’ Evernote thing but that’s too bloated as it is.

I did also give Mail to Self a try as recommend by teaim after the Browser Tabs post but it didn’t seem to forfill my need to make notes about the links. Also it just moved the multiple tabs problem into my inbox, where I have a whole other issue with to do list organisation.

Well, if Inbox Zero isn’t going to happen, at least tonight I managed Tabs to Zero. 

Comment, discuss or reply on Twitter / @mathewwilson