24 February 2016
I’ve heard lots of talk recently about information overload. I even tried to do that whole Infomagical Challenge, and I couldn’t really convince myself it was necessary. I just don’t seem to have that addiction trait.
Our social feeds are in reverse chronological order — dip in, see the latest, scroll a little to see something older, and then move on. Sure I’ll hit reload a couple times when I’m bored to see something new, (but I could totally stop whenever I want). I don’t feel like I need to necessarily click the bait or read everything.
When I want to keep up with a little news outside of the social networks, Feedly is showing me headlines from newest to oldest. I’m sure I miss some news, since I only scroll through maybe 100 stories at a time, but anything worth knowing will be mentioned a couple times over the days and weeks. I just never see some blips in news, and that’s OK — it probably wasn’t worth the time anyway.
I have BeyondPod configured to do the same thing for my audio listening. Sometimes I have 50 podcasts queued up, and sometimes I run it down to 0. I have 3 priorities into which I categorize each feed, so I can always hear my favorites first, but within each of those priorities, the episodes are still presented in LIFO order, so I don’t fall behind. When I listen my way down to something that’s just out-of-date and low in priority, I can just delete it.
The reverse-chronological (or LIFO, last-in-first-out) order works great for my photo workflow too. When I was working chronologically, every photo ended up late — up to a month or 2 at times. Working from the newest stuff back fixed that. The latest party or event could often get posted, while some lower-priority sets of photos could wait a little. When I got super-busy, some photos could end up a month or 2 delayed, but not all of them.
LIFO even saves me time when I’m culling photos, which is the first thing I do after importing photos. We often work a scene and shoot until we’re convinced that we have the shot we want, so I start looking for the keepers from the end of the set and browse my way back to the beginning of the set. When I know I have the keeper, I can more confidently skip all the previous images that led me to the keeper. There was no point in studying those earlier half-baked images when I’ll keep finding better versions as I work forward.
Once I’ve picked that 10% I’m keeping, I delete everything else, because I still have the end in mind — reasonably backing up all my images. Some probably find that idea backward too.