Laptops, smartphones & Wi-Fi generalization arrived with some new work habits. Work-life balance has been shaken. Work from home, transport, beach … Wherever you can, you want, you have to. During nights, days, holidays, week-ends, … whenever you can, you want, you have to.
Hypersoft, as a major actor of new work trends, has to understand before anyone else how professional behave, work, evolve. This knowledge allowed Hypersoft to produce Personal Analytics, dedicated on these subjects. This precious tool helps people to understand, to control their work, keeping their freedom and flexibility. Why we should have to justify something else than our fulfilled objectives and success? Keep working as you are used to and Personal Analytics will do the rest …
Obviously, to be the first understanding these new work habits, you can use theory or your imagination. Indeed, this is a good starting point. But can Hypersoft ignore practice? Is theory or imagination effective enough to reach solid conclusions? Of course not. As always, a study is valid as long as it is based on theory and practice. That is why, to confirm theory, it has been decided to send me to Florida, to practice remote work. So let's take this plane, Paris-Miami and let's experiment remote work.
Why Personal Facts?
Hypersoft has just released its latest app on Play Store, past week. This new app is entirely dedicated to smart phones time tracking and smart phones usage control. Indeed, don't you have one? Or maybe you have several of them? I am pretty sure that the first object you use each day is your smart phone. Just like me … right? Plus, you may be using intensively some devices for you work, all day long. For these reasons, Hypersoft decided to produce a special app focused on smart phones data.
So, please welcome Personal Facts
Principle remains the same and easy.
Personal facts is easy, fast, precise
Personal Facts makes the difference
Installing Personal Facts on all your smart phones, can you give a single and fast vision on all your devices. This fact is very important as you can measure efficiently your dependency on smart phones.
Personal Facts can send you some notifications if you use too much, from your perspective, your smart phones
Start having control
Facts and numbers
You may want to discover some interesting facts and numbers on Personal Facts site.
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As autumn comes fully in its dark reds, yellows and browns, in western countries three holidays come in the middle of it, all about people who passed away, but, as we prefer to believe, did not just vanish but rather changed form of their existence.
Astonishing is the spectrum of emotions which help us deal with this subject, surely a hard bit of life for everyone. Some of us pick what they prefer the most, but many of us are aware of them all.
I would attribute this red colours, sometimes even blood-bright reds to Halloween, coming at the eve of next days. It's more a festivity then a celebration and is the youngest one, I think, despite the ornaments and inspirations drawn from depths of all ages and beliefs. Not everybody appreciate it, saying it's improper for such serious matters to be turned into a grotesque, some even try to edify about familiarizing our youngsters with demons and all that dangerous stuff, but most of us think of it as fun, play and, sometimes scary but still pure joy. Yes, I know some find it hard to believe that horrors can be fun, but believe me, it can! On the other hand, amount of effort that is put into costumes, parades and games this evening show that it cannot be just a trifling play. Fun is something that always allowed us to deal with more difficult matters and play is often a way of getting into major ventures. If you ever watched a dedication of a kid rolling stone equalling his weight across the whole yard, just to build a castle – you will never say that play isn't a serious matter. That is why, as productivity therapist, Neil Fiore advices in his great book The Now Habit – if you find things in your life too hard and overwhelming, get yourself a hobby. Don't say you have no time for that – let it remind you how things you do can be easy, give fun and pleasure. Hard things too. And it also applies for eternal matters.
All Saints' Day is all in different mood, let it be yellow or even gold, the high one, dignified, in full contrast to its eve. It is a Christian holiday, devoted, as its name shows, to all people that were raised to heavens. These are the ones valued and admired. Although these are the chosen ones, we believe everyone is able to become appreciated and respected. There is some prestige gained throughout the years of work in which all efforts are rewarded. We attribute it to parents, mentors, heroes and saints, seeing the best things they have done, but it reveals these are our dreams too. It's not for nothing, what we do all the time, it's worth it, because it makes us in some way greater. It's what we want to become.
As All Saints' Day is coming to its end, the oldest holiday comes, All Souls' Day, as brown as drying leaves and full of candles' lights. Pre-christian and early Christian in origin, it commemorates all people that are not here with us any longer, but still are in our memories; all people that spent time with us and somehow made themselves a part of us. For me it does not require any belief to imagine just this form of existence, but people often pictured them more realistic – souls stepping down to our world for the night between 1st and 2nd of November and leaving at next noon. Even if sometimes afraid of them, people were also caring: preparing food, making fires on graves and crossroads to warm them, but above all, remembering them and wishing them farewell. Just simple everyday things were enough to treat them, as it is with our life which is made of simple things we do and of people we do it with.
Do we need any other motivations? Have fun, have dreams and take care of your life until next autumn!
Japanese economy is running full-speed and full-power with having most productive nation in the world. As someone working with productivity management concepts and having a personal experience of Japan, I decided to attain deeper knowledge on some notions that seem to have started latest Japanese economy boost.
If you are in any way familiar with Japanese culture of language you know that at times it is a quite challenging task to translate Japanese words, abundant with meanings, into other languages. The word 'kaizen' is not an exception. The most matching word for Kaizen in English would be 'improvement' although after Second World War, when kaizen became managerial practice in businesses as the way to economic recovery and was most successfully applied by Toyota, the notion of kaizen started to be used in the meaning of constant improvement' of work process. Nowadays spread worldwide as a practice kaizen is a technique for efficiency rise in various spheres of life.
Masaki Imai, Japanese organizational theorist, the author of 'Kaizen: The Key to Japan's Competitive Success'(1986) outlined in his book that kaizen starts from fining the problem:
'If no problem is recognized, there is no recognition of the need for improvement'.
This leads to another Japanese word-concept 'hansei' meaning the acknowledgment of problem or mistake and relating to the fact that self-awareness is the first step to improvement. Referring to mentioned above Toyota company there is a hansei-kai, a meeting held for reflection of problems faced during a work project. If there was no problem defined this is stated as a problem as it means employee did not evaluate all the possibilities for improvement of the project.
Another pithy Japanese word/concept is 'kanban'. It can be translated as 'visual signal' or 'card'. Originally applied by, again, Toyota team the methodology was used to match inventory with demand for higher level of work quality and to do this cards came into use to signal steps in manufacturing process. While it proved to be successful in ever-growing company, the alternative of applying Kanban as visualized management is that of interest.
Kanban is a simple method, a classic standing at roots of organizing any process and work life in particular. Those are colorful sticky notes put on the whiteboard so as to create roadmap of work to do. Kanban method takes information that is, as a rule, communicated in speech and makes it into easy for the brain to instantly comprehend picture, thus visualizing the tracking of workflow and effectiveness as well as difficulties and problems occurred on the work way. This data when analyzed brings ways to change the system of work for the better every single time some issue arises, in this way getting us back to the process of constant improvement.
These three Japanese words that were turned into business techniques applied all over the world are also the ways to Japanese effectiveness and productivity. They are interconnected and from my perspective they form a circle, but at the center of this circle I would put another word which is 'ikigai'.
According to Japanese, everyone has an ikigai which would be translated as 'reason for being or waking up in the morning', the thing that brings meaning and satisfaction to one's life. Such a broad and philosophical term when diminished to the field of one's professional activities is the definition of dream job I would say. To define ikigai one should list answers in four circles shown at the picture below:
1) That what you are good at
2) That which you can be paid for
3) That which you love
4) That which the world needs.
I believe ikigai is a driving force of efficient work while kaizen, hansei and kanban are the methodologies, the means of directing this force in a smart and productive way.
Why personal data collection is your power.
When we think about personal data collection, first that comes to our minds is forcibly collected cookies on the websites and stolen passwords of the credit cards. However, there is another side to this where instead of being a victim of, you own your personal data. The other day, I ran into the person who shares the same idea and what is more, acts upon it.
Data selfie is how she calls it. The artist with scientific approach, Ms Laurie Frick, takes piles of personal data in particular field and turns it into organized artistic patterns.
'I've been investigating the future of data about you, when it won't be odd or strange to intimately know and see lots and lots of personal data about yourself. Not creepy....helpful, curious, maybe mind-bending in its ability to predict and see around the corner into the future',- says Ms Frick as an introduction to her website.
The truth of the future is that it was of the past: knowledge is power. Knowledge of self is awareness. Only the means of getting information has transformed as self-tracking is now the way to self-knowledge.
It is exciting to me how the concept of awareness through tracking Ms Laurie Frick applies, is very much matching the Personal Analytics benchmarks. 'It's become so easy to track our time, I use an app on my iphone that knows how often I touch the screen and how many minutes I looked at my phone today. Some days it's scary how many hours I spent online when I thought I was making stuff in the studio all day…'- says Ms Frick.
Only think of how much more value would be added to one's life if data selfie depicted roots of his misfortunes. And that is what Ms Frick does. She makes time visible.
7 days of time tracking in leather and aluminum, data from the Multinational Time-Use survey, color coded by activity and quantity of time spent. 2015.
“(c) 2015 Laurie F. Artist. All rights reserved"
Considering the patterns of time use Ms Frick addresses some important moment on how conscious we actually are about how we spend our time. Since we are what we do then unconscious time use patterns must hold a lot of information on the portrait of our inner-self.
When distrust that many feel towards any personal data collection and measuring is understandable, the reality is that the benefits of it are undeniable as long as you are ready to face true colors (or numbers when talking of Personal Analytics).
At one of the webpages Ms Frick invites you to imagine the reality where everything about you is known. Thrilling and scary at the same time isn't it. And her final thought is brilliantly simple: the biggest problem is that self-delusion becomes not possible anymore.
We cannot disagree on this, Ms Frick.