Timed Blogging (30th November 2009)

Testing how long it takes to create a minimal blog entry and add it to my website. To blog this paragraph took 7½ minutes! To write a substantial but straightforward blog entry with few distractions takes me about 40 minutes, end to end.

Absolute Minimum

  1. Decided I wanted to write a blog entry whilst laying in bed.
  2. Timer started.
  3. Got out of bed, walked to PC room and switched PC on.
  4. Startup time is about 1 minute.
  5. Another half minute whilst my favourite applications loaded at startup.
  6. Started TextStudio, my text/HTML editor.
  7. Used File > Open to create a new file on my machine.
  8. Chose to name it timed-blogging.html, after 2 other names.
  9. Wrote the title and set the publication time.
  10. Added the first sentence, which I have kept at the start.
  11. Ran my build scripts to update all the Blog index pages, archive pages and feed.
  12. Checked the result using my local server.
  13. Corrected a typo in the title and amended the first sentence.
  14. Ran the build script again.
  15. Checked the result; everything seemed fine.
  16. Started Windows Explorer and went to my Favourite for Project Cerbera (FTP).
  17. Logged in.
  18. Uploaded the new and changed files into the relevant folders.

Time taken was now 19 minutes, after publishing this new section. After a couple more typo fixes I had taken 21 minutes.

Realistic Additions

Usually I am carrying out other tasks whilst I blog, such as making a meal or waiting for a TV show to start. At this point I went to make breakfast.

Without realising, I ate my breakfast at the PC having forgotten I was in the middle of a timed experiment! It’s only now, as I’ve started drinking my hot chocolate, that I’ve noticed 35 minutes have elapsed since the start.

You might think this has ruined the experiment but I look at it differently. This is a realistic turn of events because I do get distracted whilst writing a blog. Indeed, the above phases were undertaken with an artificially low amount of distraction. Almost no distraction at all, in fact.

Therefore, this unexpected diversion has added to the experiment. After publishing this section I had taken exactly 38 minutes. Closing open applications and shutting down the PC takes 1 or 2 minutes.