Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Google's Online Flight Status

Google recently released a feature to track the status of a flight. All you have to do is go to Google and type in your airline and flight number into the search box. The search results will let you know if the flight is on schedule, departure location and time and arrival location and estimated time.

Better flight stats results [Official Google Blog]

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Time Management - Email

Do you sometimes feel as if you have too much to do, yet not enough time to do it all? You know, where one moment you're working on a critical project, the next dealing with a perceived emergency. Those times when you feel as if you're being pulled in a bunch of different directions. As a result you might sometimes feel as if you're not getting anything done! I came across a blog from New York Times blogger Marci Alboher. She describes the following:

  • The system she uses for maintaining emails.
  • To eliminate unnecessary meetings.
  • To work when most productive.
  • To set boundaries when necessary.
  • To know when to say "no" at times when a "yes" will be counterproductive.
I certainly find the last two most challenging; setting boundaries and knowing when to say "no". What I'd also add to the list is how to delegate and leverage resources. Ultimately, I believe a win/win needs to be reached.

5 Time Management Tricks [NY Times Blog: Shifting Careers]
InBox Zero: Action Based Email [43 Folders]

Friday, December 7, 2007

Power Nap with Caffeine Boost

Have you ever found yourself starting to fade during an insanely busy day? You know, those days where it feels like you are sleep deprived? I came across an interesting article from Wired's How To Wiki:

Scientists say that a successful midday nap depends on two things: timing and (no kidding) caffeine consumption. Experiments performed at Loughborough University in the UK showed that the sleep-deprived need only a cup of coffee and 15 minutes of shut-eye to feel amazingly refreshed.
  1. Right before you crash, down a cup of java. The caffeine has to travel through your gastro-intestinal tract, giving you time to nap before it kicks in.
  2. Close your eyes and relax. Even if you only doze, you'll get what's known as effective microsleep, or momentary lapses of wakefulness.
  3. Limit your nap to 15 minutes. A half hour can lead to sleep inertia, or the spinning down of the brain's prefrontal cortex, which handles functions like judgment. This gray matter can take 30 minutes to reboot.
I'm looking forward to my next siesta!

On a different note, but still on the subject of sleep, experts at the 2006 National Institute of Health Consensus Conference agreed on the following recommendations for obtaining optimum sleep value:

  • Do not take sleeping pills. This includes over-the-counter pills and melatonin.
  • Don't go to bed until you're sleepy. If you have trouble sleeping, try going to bed later or getting up earlier.
  • Get up at the same time every morning, even after a bad night's sleep. The next night, you'll be sleepy at bedtime.
  • If you wake up in the middle of the night and can't fall back to sleep, get out of bed and return only when you are sleepy.
  • Avoid worrying, watching TV, reading scary books, and doing other things in bed besides sleeping and sex. If you worry, read thrillers or watch TV, do that in a chair that's not in the bedroom.
  • Do not drink or eat anything caffeinated within six hours of bedtime.
  • Avoid alcohol. It's relaxing at first but can lead to insomnia when it clears your system.
  • Spend time outdoors. People exposed to daylight or bright light therapy sleep better.
Article: [Wired How To Wiki]