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How to productively spend “free time” at the office

I am a Coldfusion Web Developer. I recently changed a company so that I can relocate to a different state. The current project I have is just a backup position for 3 months. I am not having much work, and the work I have also has nothing to do with programming. How do you other programmers generally make use of so much of free time? (I am going to stay here for another two months though)

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    You're looking at it! – GrandmasterB Jan 13 '12 at 21:59
  • Also see Exploiting creativity with "free time". – user8 Jan 13 '12 at 22:15
  • Just wait, you'll get a project thrown at you that will need to be done ASAP and require OT. – JeffO Jan 13 '12 at 22:22
  • Yes, closed as duplicate, referring to another closed question which was closed as off-topic. That makes sense. How is this issue which affects programmers in the real world not relevant to the programmers SE site? Frustrating to say the least. – Jason Lewis Jan 14 '12 at 2:14

Make the very most of it. You may never say this again in your career. The more common question is "what happened to my spare time?"

When I say "Make the most of it." I do not mean "lie back and enjoy it." I mean use it very wisely. Learn, work on a personal project, join an open-source project, do ANYTHING with that time which will advance your skills (both for you and the company you work for).

The one time in my life where I was short of things to do (I was key to one project which meant I needed to be free on demand, so I couldn't really join other projects properly), I actually convinced the company to pay for a metric ton of O'Reilly books and sat learning all about web development. Which didn't actually come in handy til some years later but, when it did, it really did.

Edit: That was obviously back in the days when we had to learn things from books. You could get an O'Reilly subscription nowadays, or just cruise the internet, or read Stack Exchange sites all day.

  • "work on a personal project, join an open-source project" One has to be very careful with that, so your employer can't claim ownership of your work. – CodesInChaos Jan 14 '12 at 10:15

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