How Do I Work – v4.0

I’ve been taking a hard look at how I do work. By that, I mean how I chose what work to do and how I arrange my day to make it happen. There have been a few iterations over the last year, and I keep getting better and better at it.

All In My Head – v1.0

In the beginning, there was my not great memory and my “feels“. My todos lived in my head (or my inbox) and calendar had a scatter of hard scheduled meetings and open time. Project time had to happen in my scattered free time, and was largely done based on what I felt like doing in the moment, or what urgent thing had been dropped on me. That was good enough in some ways, but I wasn’t as nearly as effective or productive as I could have been. Some days, it was hard to state a solid item that I had done that day, but I certainly stayed busy doing emails and the like.

I dabbling in GTD (Getting Things Done), in both paper and digital versions, and that never stuck. Capturing and organizing open items and tracking contexts never worked for me and took more effort than it benefitted.

Effective Capture – v2.0

Then I discovered Bullet Journal. (Site / Book) It’s a light-process, flexibly structured system of capturing things – todo’s, notes of different kinds, events to be organized, and whatever else comes up. All it takes is a notebook and a pen. It clicked for me in really useful ways. My biggest win was finally capturing all the todo’s that used to (poorly) exist just in my head and getting them on paper. That alone has been life-changing.

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Goodbye, CoreOS

For my now-retired at-home hosting, and for my first migration to the cloud, I used CoreOS as my hosting OS. It’s optimized to be a container server and for super-efficient automated deployments. It worked well, and I loved the elegance behind the design, even though I never did multi-node automated CI/CD deployments with it. I had had a problem with it since the cloud migration, where every 11 days after reboot, it would spike CPU and memory and get unresponsive for a few minutes at a time. I could never entirely nail down what was causing it, but best I can tell, logging was getting sticky trying to log failed login attempts from SSH. That I had MariaDB/MySQL, a couple of low-activity wordpress sites, and automated Let’sEncrypt cert management running in 2G of memory wasn’t helping either.

Since I built that version 8mos or so ago, the CoreOS people, since acquired by RedHat, announced upcoming the end-of-life of CoreOS on 26MAY2020. That, combined with my ongoing minor problems led me to port everything to a new cloud host.

This time I went with a more conventional linux, and ported everything over in a few hours, along with DR / rebuild documentation. In fact, this post is the first on the new platform. Here’s hope it’s happily running in 12 days, and thanks for your service CoreOS.

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WordPress Works!

Finally, after much wrangling with Apache, PHP, WordPress and its multisite configuration, and SSL certificates, I think I have our little network of sites up, usable, and secure. Time will tell.

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