1.01.2011

Resolve To Do Less

Welcome to a brand new year ladies and gentlemen! I hope that your holidays were filled with much merriment and joy and all the other things that come with the death of the old year and the dawning of a new one. Usually around this time, people stop for a little introspection to analyse the things in their lives which could use some improvement and make resolutions to address those personal shortcomings. A perennial item on my list is time management, my lack of which being a general detractor to things such as school achievement and side-projects (the Jiyu-Shin website is still coming, I promise!).

I know that I am not alone in making a resolution to manage my time better, nor am I the only one who has this on their list year after year. Well this year I say forget it! And in honour of my incredibly misguided rebellion I would like to unveil my list of Top Five Time Wasters!

Wikipedia
via xkcd
Like many students these days, the first place I reach to when trying to get a rough idea of what anything is about is Wikipedia. I really like to learn and there is just so much there. Regular, old-school encyclopaedias usually were pretty big and came in 20-ish volumes. Wikipedia? Printed, it would probably be 2100+ volumes (based on a little math and some statistics) just for the English version. So yeah, you can waste some time there; though not as much time as at...

Tv Tropes:
via xkcd

For those not in the know, Tv Tropes is a wiki which documents and details tropes in our culture. From music and film to webcomics and animé, Tv Tropes covers just about everything a fiction lover needs to know to never look at media the same way ever again. Tv Tropes is a must-have resource for any media student. Given that it is a wiki, it suffers from the same problem as Wikipedia: finding yourself with a tonne of tabs open and two hours gone. Heck, Tv Tropes even has a trope to describe the phenomena. It is, however, worse than Wikipedia for wiki-walking because the each trope is defined by the way it interacts with other tropes, often leaving you with 7+ tabs open after visiting a single page. Represent that exponentially as you explore each tab you have just opened... well lets just say that it took me over two hours just to write this section.

Know Your Meme



There is a lot of crazy stuff out there on the internetz. And sometimes you miss a lot of it. KYM has a nice index of memes (basically inside jokes online or viral video. Encyclopedia Dramatica has a pretty good definition, but be warned - here there be monsters) and often have videos to go with them and give a nice summary or further detail.

Webcomics:

They're like what you find in the paper, only online. And instead of having just a few strips to work with each day, you have MASSIVE ARCHIVES to deal with instead! I love webcomics. They are a fascinating take on the old comic format and provide a really neat platform to tell stories and have some rather complex narratives. Or, if you prefer something a little less involved, there are strips for that too. In fact, there are webcomics that touch on just about every topic imaginable, so there should be something out there that appeals to everyone. If you're looking to start into a comic with a little (or a lot) of history, the devil Tv Tropes has a round-up of webcomics with a minimum of 1000 posts in their archives. Schlock Mercenary ftw.

Books:

Last but certainly not least, reading is a great way to lose some time. Whether it be curling up with your favourite novel, working your way through your TBR list, or grabbing an anthology of short stories and picking a quick read at random, books provide a great escape from the daily grind.

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