Decision Fatigue


#1

Both of you speak often of how much time automations can save you in the long run which in turn legitimizes the up front time cost in setting these up. And I agree.

But another reason which I do not think is always the same is to save from decision fatigue. These are those annoying little things that are simple in and of themselves but that take up a small amount of your brain power but interrupt your flow. The difference is that here, it is not so much about the time saved, but not having to redirect your attention to some tedious mundane detail. Listen to the last bit of the latest ep of Cortex where Grey speaks of his podcast idea shortcut. His shortcut might save him about 2 seconds… but the import thing is that it puts the essential task of writing up front allowing him to keep focus.

Anyway, I am just pointing out that the hard sell on automations is not always net time saved (in fact you might prove to me that in the end, I didnt save anytime bc I took so long to set up an automation) but focus saved and tedium avoided.


#2

I agree. I’m trying the home-screen shortcut blitz to reduce that decision time.
One I always have is scanning. So, my camera shortcut brings up a list of actions, and one is scan a document.

Plus, I actually enjoy writing little scripts for fun.

Final thought though, the time saved is rarely worth it on a script-by-script basis for me, but if I look at what some of my advanced scripts, macros and workflows are capable of after 20+ years of doing this sort of thing, well, it’s a difference of something being done vs not done. Those are rare, but oh so valuable.


#3

I completely agree. For me avoiding decision fatigue is just as important as saving time.

Another benefit of automation, in my opinion, is the amount of understanding you are forced to have over the process you are automating. Whenever I’m trying to learn a new process or workflow the first thing I do is try to automate it in some way because effective automation requires an accurate understanding of the thing being automated.

Do my ramblings make sense? Lol


#4

Makes complete sense to me, and I dont even program (beyond simple MacroDroid Actions). Great point!


#5

Cool, iPhone or Android?


#6

And I really like your point about it being the possible difference between a task being done or not at all. I have ADD and tedium makes any mundane task look unsurrmountable. Bc of this, even if you proved to me that the net time saved in automating was actually an overall loss it doesnt matter to me if it means it gets rid of the unnecessary dread my brain foists upon me and, as you pointed out, that the task will actually get done.


#7

I’ve been writing code to automate things since my university days. It started with VBA macros in Excel, now it’s mainly Jacascript in Google Sheets where I have a couple of biggish projects to create online homework, and provide feedback after tests.
I started on my Spectrum 48k and my biggest apps are on iOS, though.