Should I Automate This? | Hackaday
The short answer to the question asked in the title: yes.
For the long answer you need to do a little math. How much total time will you save by automating over a reasonable horizon? This is a simple product of how much time an event multiplies by how many times a day it happens, by the number of days on your horizon. Or skip the math because there is an XKCD for this.
The funny thing about this table is that it’s kind of like a Rorschach test that gives you an idea of how much you’re suffering. automatism. I always thought that Randall was trying to convince himself not to take (fun) automation projects because that was my condition at the time. From my current point of view, it’s a little shocking that something that will save you five seconds, five times a day, is worth spending. twelve o’clock On. I need to do a little automation.
For a drop: I use pass like my password manager because it is ultimately flexible, simple and secure. It stores passwords on my hard drive and on my GPG-encrypted backup server, which I printed on paper in a fireproof safe. Because I practice good cookie hygiene, I end up re-entering my passwords every day. Because I keep my passwords separate from my browser, this means entering a username and password by cropping and pasting. There are your five seconds, five times a day. Maybe two seconds, ten times, but it’s all the same. It shouldn’t take me even twenty minutes to create a script that puts a username and password in the selection and a one-click clipboard. Why haven’t I done this yet? I will deal with it as soon as I finish this newsletter.
But that begs the question. If you take up to twelve hours for any possible savings of 25 seconds a day, when will you get your real job done? Again, math gives us the answer. An eight-hour workday * 25 seconds * 12 hours (pessimistic) work = 1.58 years before all that automation needs to be. Next week’s newsletter may be a little fun.
What do you see in the XKCD table “Is it worth the time”? Automate more or step back from the edge of the cliff?