25 Jan 2012, 16:22

Bill Nalen (13 posts)

I’m a software developer as I think the author is too. As such I have a bunch of todo items in our bug tracker at work. On top of that I have a bunch of work items that aren’t bugs and a bunch of personal items. I’m just starting the technique after reading the book and I’m setting up my activity inventory sheet. Obviously I want to put my personal todo items and work non-bug items on the list.

I think I read that these should be items that I expect to work on in the near future. So, is there another list that I should keep someday type items on? The author says he keeps about 25-30 items on the activity inventory. If I do a brain dump of everything on my todo list, that might be 100 items.

Also, regarding the bug tracker. Do I copy the next 2 weeks or so of bugs on to my activity inventory? Do I just make one note on the activity inventory to go look at the bug log? For instance I have to update about 30 pages in our web application. That’s about 30 pomodori worth of work which I can break down to about 1 or 2 per page. Do I list all 30 pages on the activity inventory and pick a few per day to move to the Today sheet? Do I keep all the in bug tracker as one item and pull a few to the Today sheet everyday?

I guess my question is for developers who have a shared bug/issue list already, how do you integrate that with the activity inventory?

26 Jan 2012, 08:10

Staffan Nöteberg (8 posts)

Hi Bill,

Thanks for your feedback.

If you have 100 activities in a list, there might be many of them that will never make it into the first spot. Suppose this is true, then it’s waste to maintain them in a list. They will add noise to your daily prioritizing. For me, the limit goes at 20-30. If a new activity enters when the list is full, then one of the current activities needs to be removed. However, this is an adaptive method. If you try to limit your list to 20, and you find it to short, then try 40 or 60 and see if it’s better for you.

About things we do every day, I’ll keep a check-list. Let’s say that the check-list has two activities: read emails and check bug database. I’d then reserve my first iteration every day to execute the check-list and delay creation of my To Do Today until before the second iteration. Some emails needs to be answered, and some bugs needs to be examined. If they are urgent and important I’ll add them to the To Do Today. This is one possible adaption of the text book version of Pomodoro.

Best // Staffan

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