[NetBehaviour] making better use of time while performing repetitive tasks on auto-pilot II

James Morris james at jwm-art.net
Wed Jun 2 00:54:31 CEST 2010

my job is mundane, repetitive, and i can perform it on auto-pilot for the
most part; it requires very little thought.

today at work i was standing on my feet performing my job with no thought
at all. the machine had a slow cycle time. i faced eight hours of
repetitious movement and noise. each machine has it's own ambiance as you
stand there, facing down into the machine awaiting its fruits, you're
blinkered to the product.

my hobby is computer programming no less. today at work while I preformed
my job without thought for it, i thought about what i did last night:

last night i helped someone on a local linux user group mailing list
install mod_perl for apache on freebsd by providing links to information
about how freebsd provides mod_perl for apache, and then links to
information about how to use freebsd ports to install it.

so that made me feel good while at work.

and then last night also i modified the SConstruct file which comes with
the source code of the MiniComputer soft-synth. on linux distributions
which are aware that there is fltk, and fltk2, MiniComputer will not
build. I modified the SConstruct file so it will build and then posted to
a list and to the author of MiniComputer.

so that made me feel good while at work. i never code in python, and have
never written a SConstruct file for the SCONS build system before, so this
felt like an achievement.

this made me feel good at work, that i am capable of doing such things,
because when doing repetitive mundane jobs i have a tendency to beat
myself up over how useless and worthless i must be that i can only be
employed in jobs which an untrained monkey's granny could do.

so i realized i had been 'making better use of time while performing
repetitive tasks on auto-pilot'. also last night, while attempting to
'fix' the MiniComputer SConstruct to work on my system, I had asked a
question on stackoverflow.com about one of the problems I had run into.

At work today, while thoroughly thoughtlessly performing my job, i was
thoroughly thinking about what i did last night on the computer. i
recalled the emails i wrote, the thanks i received. i recalled the
stackoverflow page i wrote the question on, the overall graphic design.

later i was so bored at work i found a sticker and while waiting for the
machine to complete its cycle i doodled on the sticker. when i decided the
doodle was finished, the word 'jurisdiction' 'popped' into 'my' 'head'. I
was relieved for a 5 minute break shortly after, and so i sat in the
canteen and wrote the words 'JuriesDiction' beneath the doodle - note how
i sat in the canteen and not the smoking hut, for i still have given up
that wicked weed. so while doodling at work in void time, time where i
wait for the machine with nothing to do but looking busy, i felt, like, i
have something here just from the fact that i wanted to doodle while at
work. that i was actually interested in the seemingly random marks i made
on a blank barcode label.

later i was thoroughly fed up with work as usual and the shift did not end
soon enough. i'm supposed to show commitment to the smooth running of

More information about the NetBehaviour mailing list