Monday, April 07, 2008

The pomodoro technique

The pomodoro technique has been recently presented by Matteo Vaccari and Federico Gobbo at XPDays Benelux.

Essentially, it consists of dividing your workday into uninterrupted chunks of 25 minutes, plus 5 minute pauses. You set a by setting a kitchen timer to go off in 25 minutes and do whatever work you need to get done without letting yourself being interrupted by external or internal (yourself) distractions.

It's very simple, helpful and enjoyable technique.


Anonymous said...

Interesting that one can write more than 40 pages on how to cut your work time in slices.

Ceki said...

Funny you should mention that. I had a similar thought when I read the paper. However, to be fair to Francesco Cirillo, his paper, "The Promoro Technique", is also about work psychology. There is no upper limit to the number of pages one could write about the way humans work. Anyway, I found his paper interesting and pleasant to read. However, I also kept wondering if he could not have described the core of this technique in fewer pages.

Do you think he could have better served the Pomodore Techinique by writing fewer pages? More generally, is it better to treat a subject by describe the mere essentials or is it better to augment the description with colorful fluff? According to experimental studies on memory, most people find it easier to remember information which was presented to them in colorful and vivid detail than information presented in a dull but factual style. (Sorry, I can't find any references.) Thus, perhaps Francesco has got it right all the way.

Anonymous said...

You're probably right. The tone of my previous comment comes from the fact that I've personally never found a way to really organize my work day. I'm probably going to give it a try, although I see a potential issue preventing the diffusion of this technique: I'm wondering how the use of a pomodoro kitchen timer on my desk will impact my credibility among my colleagues :)