Friday, October 07, 2011

Making Progress

I've cut down to 50 RSS feeds from my previous over 500. I used to see 50 new headlines every 15 minutes. Now I see about 20 an hour. Still too many really.
Here is what has survived the cut:
  • BGG:
    • BGG.con: Because I'm going to the con
    • Hot Deals
    • It's Alive: Because it's my game
    • News: Official site announcements, not the former BGN
    • Official terms of service: rarely updates
    • New publishers x 2 (board games and RPG): Because I still maintain a large db of this kind of information
  • Pure distractions
    • Buttercup Festival
    • Dilbert
    • Girls With Slingshots
    • Miss Manners (from The Buffalo News)
    • New Yorker Fiction Podcast
    • New Yorker Outloud Podcast
    • NPR's On The Media Podcast
    • Order of the Stick
    • PostSecret
    • PRI Design for the Real World Podcast
    • PRI Science and Creativity Podacst
    • PRI Selected Shorts Podcast
    • PRI Studio 360 Podcast
    • PRI To the Best of Our Knowledge Podcast
    • Questionable Content
    • Roger Ebert Movie Reviews
    • Something Positive
    • The Devil's Panties
    • This American Life Podcast
    • WNYC's Radio Lab Podcast
    • XKCD
  •  Games:
    • Applied Game Design
    • The Dice Tower Podcast: See above
    • Jerusalem Strategy Gaming Club (my own feed)
    • Loot
    • Mind Your Decisions
    • Raanana Gamer: Local gamer
    • Yehuda (my own feed)
    • Tapuz board games, a Hebrew Israeli board game forum
  •  News
    • Official IDF feed
    • Israelli: Official government feed
    • Jerusalem Post Front Page
    • CNN Main
    • CNN Entertainment: I'm a bit embarrassed about this one
    • New York Times International
  •  Tech
    • A List Apart
    • CNN Technology
    • Discover: Technology
    • Giveaway of the Day
    • New York Times internet
    • TEDTalks Videos
  • A friend's personal feed
  • Updates to my Facebook wall: I waste less time on Facebook this way
I download the podcasts for long distance trips and occasional listening during work. I don't listen to all of them, God forbid. Cut out the podcasts and I'm down to 39 feeds, of which 30 or so are actually active.

What's missing is striking: nearly any game blog, for one. It turns out that, if you're not interested in reviews, thoughts about upcoming games, rehashed game design notes, or session reports, there's not much out there. I would continue to read Purple Pawn, Eric Martin's BGN (now BGG News), and one or two others, but I'm forcing myself not to.

Other than The Dice Tower, game podcasts are generally poor, unprofessional, and uninteresting. A few might have made the cut, such as Have Games Will Travel and Garret's Games and Geekiness, but the other mainstream podcasts are just so much better, and I haven't got enough listening time as it is. TDT is also still an order of magnitude less professional than the mainstream podcasts, but it's also an order of magnitude better than any other game podcast.

I cut out fire-hose feeds like Techdirt, Slashdot, Mashable, and so on, since the real tech news will end up on CNN or NYT, and the rest of it was opinion. I'm a little surprised that the mainstream media won out in favor of blogs, but apparently they still know what they're doing.

Naturally, I've also resigned from over 50 mailing lists (I'm still getting some list mailings; I can't seem to get them all) and removed most of the sites from my bookmarks and quick toolbars.

Since I discovered the feed for my Facebook wall, I no longer feel like I have to remove friends from Facebook, though I still removed 50 friends; I'm down at 350. Many more will definitely be cut: gamers who know me from my writings but whom I don't really know. I'm waiting to see if I friend any of them in real life at BGG.con.

The Point

When I have a spare moment to kill now, I still reach for my distractions: my RSS reader, some additional bookmarks. But there's a lot less there to distract me, now.

As a result, I got back to work on a game design I want to complete by and for BGG.con, and it looks like it will be ready to print and ship on time. I'm just working out the money and sponsorship.

Yehuda

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

OOTS, XKCD and PostSecret? Brother!

tishdar from BGG

Yehuda said...

Editorial comment?

Yehuda

Nadine said...

See, if you were still commuting, you'd have more time for podcasts :). I didn't realize about bgg feeds, a good idea.

Anonymous said...

yes (i guess, not exactly sure what you mean, either): one of recognition and appreciation of your interests.

tishdar

Anonymous said...

waitaminnit! i just figured out the confusion.

one could read "Brother!" as: "oh, Brother, what a weirdo".

while my intent was more on the lines of: "My Brother, we share similar interests and as such are akin to genetic relatives".

aaand now, i am that weirdo who posts just a little too often on your website. so i depart.

(but thanks for the website: i greatly enjoy it.)

tishdar