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How can I be more productive at work? (additional context inside)
How to code on a very tight schedule?

Sometimes we create new code quickly. And sometimes we can't concentrate.

Development process has different thinking stages. There is a fast stage when we create code as a result of our ideas. And there is a slow stage when we think. And it is important not to be disturbed when slow stage or thinking time may be extended.

Do you know another recomendations to use work time effectively? May be good guide?


6 Answers 6


During your 'thinking' phase, make sure you go out regulary. Take breaks, take for example a stroll in the park. Thinking doesn't always come by sitting behind your desk, browsing through code or studying API's. Actually, it's quite the opposite: new surroundings inspire and often give new insights.

  • plus - even when you're taking a break from thinking, you're still thinking...
    – HorusKol
    Commented May 25, 2011 at 23:57

A door - with an office. Then close the door. From the inside.

  • You forgot: unplug the phone. Commented May 25, 2011 at 21:25

Write a lot of throwaway programs to test assumptions, theories, and ideas. Make sure they never themselves evolve into anything - do throw them away, but carry away bits of useful code and data. Try to enter projects with a good number of assumptions tested, which often saves a lot of grief and thrashing later on.


Close your e-mail client.

Close your browser.

Or at least only allow yourself to open browser tabs directly related to the task you are working on.

  • Close your browser then open the browser to start debugging.
    – sergzach
    Commented Apr 16, 2017 at 6:52

Keep a tight feedback cycle.

If your code or environment requires a compilation or refresh phase, that's usually dead air that could have been used to muse about the problem more. Compare and contrast scripting and interpreted languages versus compiled ones. Or look for anything that supports live editing or at the very least automated refresh/compilation.


Learn to touch type / type quickly.

If there's a physical impediment blocking or deterring you from serializing your thoughts to a secure area, then that's a legitimate concern.

I find it hard to believe that there are successful "hunt and peck" programmers out there in the wild.

  • +1: I haven't seen any poor typists who were good programmers. Good programmers are good because they have done a lot of programming. They become good typists through sheer repetition. I've seen guys type 80 wpm with two fingers. Commented May 26, 2011 at 3:09
  • Edsger Dijkstra, one of the most famous computer scientists in the world programmed using pen and paper. And for good reasons: think twice, code once.
    – Dibbeke
    Commented May 26, 2011 at 9:24
  • Maybe i'm just a slow thinker, but i rarely feel limited by my typing speed (i type without looking, of course, but no touch-typing). I tend to assume that my thoughts are overcomplicated and should be refactored, when they need too much text.
    – keppla
    Commented Oct 13, 2011 at 7:47

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