For me, I’m most productive early in the morning and mid-afternoon when I get back from lunch. I’m worthless just before lunch and anytime at night.
That is, unless I get into Flow. Flow is something that I definitely subscribe to. One of the responders to Todd’s question also brought it up and, like me, feels it is random and unpredictable. I’ve found, though, that you can sort of force Flow by giving yourself deadlines.
Here is a good way to get into Flow every day… write down a task that you know can be handled in a short period of time, tell yourself you have to have it done by a certain time and start working on it. If you finish early then you gave yourself too much time. But if you get the timing right you’ll be working really hard to get that task accomplished. Once you do, you’ll be on a roll. You’ll achieve Flow. Don’t stop. Don’t get up. Just start something else on your list.
I’ve found this has worked for me when I’ve needed to force myself into Flow.
Light Table is based on a very simple idea: we need a real work surface to code on, not just an editor and a project explorer. We need to be able to move things around, keep clutter down, and bring information to the foreground in the places we need it most.
This project is inspired by Bret Victor’s presentation Inventing on Principal that I also mentioned Nilai is inspired by. Light Table makes for a very interesting demo. The most intriguing of the modes shown was the mode wherein you could see all of the related code while you were editing, say, a specific method in a class. This type of IDE wouldn’t just save time, it’d probably result in far better code.