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Thursday, September 07, 2006

Current Favourite Blog: Lifehacker

It took me a while to get started with reading blogs. Really, I hated the idea of checking on a random website every so often just to find out that the author hadn't found the time or energy to publish anything of value.

In this respect, Googles personalised homepage has changed my life. I think I might have had a Bloglines account before, but I never used it. The Thunderbird newsreader wasn't too much use either. But nowadays, as the start page of all my browsers is capable of assembling email, calendar and bookmarks, I've also started to add the one or other RSS feed using the excellent Google Reader plugin.

Naturally, the first entries in my blogroll included the sites I frequented anyway: General news sites, sites specialised in biodiversity science or policy, plus the odd just-for-fun site. Using labels enabled me to distinguish work from interest from pure distraction.

But then, while I spent my summer holidays learning French in Brussels, I also used them to catch up with some programming|webdesign, geeky productivity approaches and reflection about love and life. This was when I added the first 'pure' blog to my reading list. It is still my favourite, and I find it hard to resist reading these wonderfully geeky and terribly useful tips and hints the moment they are posted.

What I like about Lifehacker: Though a lot of stuff deals with computers and how to use them more effectively, Gina, Adam and Wendy never lose the perspective that these are just tools, and far from being a solution in themselves. You'll even find tipps on how to build a cat tree in there. It's a brilliant mix between really useful tipps, and just plain geeky playfulness. I like.

In their own words:

Computers make us more productive. Yeah, right. Lifehacker recommends the software downloads and web sites that actually save time. Don't live to geek; geek to live.

While my blogroll is growing, I've also noticed that the lifehacker folks are covering the most important stuff from some of the blogs I'm reading. I'll keep an eye on this, it might be a good way of shortening my reading list. Very convenient if there's someone else summarises the most important points of sometimes rather lengthy articles.

There's quite some stuff I've recently tried after being prompted to it by lifehacker (and its surroundings):

Keep up the good work, over there!

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