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Tips for refreshing afternoon naps (to increase your productivity)

old hairdresser sleeping at work

Recently I’ve started to wake up at 5am to get a head start to my day. I usually rise this early 4-6 times a week. I’ve found that I manage to accomplish a lot more when I wake up so early. Some days I begin the work day at 6am, other days I go for a run first. All in all, waking up at 5am is a real productivity booster.

The problem is that by lunch time, I’ve already been awake for 6-7 hours and I’m tired out. I need a nap to top off my batteries if I want to make it through the day. Afternoon naps FTW! And with all that  “practice”, I’ve developed a few tips to make make the most of my naps.

Most important tip: Naps should be 15-20 minutes long only, 30 minutes at most. Any longer and you’re more likely to be groggy the rest of the day. Read More »

Self-employment is a license to say NO

shutterstock_18863395

Many people go self-employed and gleefully say, “look at all the things I can do.” Self-employment offers the freedom to say YES to all sorts of interesting projects that they wouldn’t have time for with a full-time job.

But the true freedom offered by self-employment is the ability to say NO. Now you can choose to avoid mediocre projects, uninteresting obligations and avoid the drudgery of chores you had no choice but to do when you had a job.

Your time is precious and irreplaceable, so you should absolutely be saying NO more often than YES. Now you can focus your time on the projects that actually excite you, your family and loved ones, your calling – i.e. the stuff that truly matters.

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sandbox

You’ve created your WooCommerce store, uploaded all your products and are ready to accept payments via PayPal. But how would you know if PayPal will play nice with your store?

Most people will make a small purchase with a friend’s PayPal account as a live test. But that costs real money and is annoying if you have to test multiple times. This post explains how to test the payment system using the PayPal Sandbox.

The PayPal Sandbox is a place where you can test your shopping cart and other PayPal integrations in a realistic way, except that no money changes hands. This means you can test your PayPal processes in the Sandbox and know they will behave the same on the when you go live.

Read the full article on ClickWP: Test payments in WooCommerce with the PayPal Sandbox

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Ellie Goulding – Lights (Bassnectar Remix)

Ellie Goulding has become one of my fave artists. I love her Lights single, but the one that really gets me moving is the Bassnectar Remix (YouTube / SoundCloud). Can’t wait for her new single Burn is available on iTunes.

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Setup MAMP and Parallels to test Windows browsers on Mac

Had to figure this out earlier today and figured others might be looking for an answer too. I am assuming that:

  1. You are using MAMP with the default ports (80 for Apache)
  2. You are using Parallels with Windows 7 (although these steps should work for older versions too)

Step 1: Setup your local environment with MAMP

This step is pretty straightforward. If you put your website in <Document Root>/sitename should be able to load it at http://localhost/sitename/.

Here’s a helpful tutorial. Don’t forget to set your Apache and MySQL ports to the default 80 and 3306.

Step 2: Figure out your Mac’s IP address on the network

Go into your Mac’s Network Preferences. You’ll see 2 or more connections on the left and the active one will say Connected. Click on it and you’ll see the IP address on the right side of the pane.

To make sure your Mac’s IP address doesn’t change, click on Advanced → TCP/IP. The options sheet below appears.

Network_Preferences

Change the IPV4 option to Using DHCP with manual address and type in an unused IP address. In the example above I used 192.168.1.100. Read More »

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Craig Hockenberry blogged about this excellent piece of internet lore the other day about the origin of the word “tweet” from way back in 2006

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Fever + Sunstroke = A great RSS reading experience

Google Reader is “retiring” next week. Like many I have been looking for a replacement. Feedly is a service I have been using and quite like. However I also took the opportunity to experiment with a feed reader that I’ve heard about for years called Fever.

fever fluid

Developed by Shaun Inman, Fever is a web app, not a desktop app. I like it so much that its made me enjoy RSS again and relegated Feedly to my backup RSS reader.

Why Fever is awesome

Hot Links

Traditional RSS readers get crowded and overwhelming when you subscribe to a lot of feeds. With Fever, it actually reads your feeds and compiles the most frequently talked about links into a Hot Links page. So the more links you follow, the better Fever gets.

My RSS feeds in Fever

Click to embiggen

I wondered how well this would work. I’m glad to say it works great. Fever constantly shows me the top Apple and WordPress news: exactly the news I want to see. Read More »

Why I love Apple

I’ve got this relationship with Apple that is unique among all the other brands that I use.

I love Apple. At least 10x more than any other brand.

I honestly believe that they make products with the singular goal of enhancing its users lives. Apple can and usually does things in their own way. But their decisions are based on making my day more productive, my experiences more immersive and my tools more delightful. That’s why they obsess over details.

Details like how and when to show you new email in iPhone Mail. Details like formatting dates so they remain visible in varying column widths. Details like making a MacBook out of a single piece of aluminum. Details like variances measured in microns.

Apple recently unveiled their Designed by Apple campaign at WWDC 2013. In the video above that explains their reason for being, they say:

We spend a lot of time
On a few great things.
Until every idea we touch
Enhances each life it touches.

Cynics will say that it’s just marketing or hippy bullshit.

I say it’s proof that Apple makes its products for people, not “markets”. Real people like my mom, not numbers who make up sales figures. It’s proof that Apple cares.

That’s why I love Apple.