Work From Home Like LibraryThing Does


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Work From Home Like LibraryThing Does

Mar 17, 2020, 4:05 pm

We just published a blog post, with our experiences.

Are you working from home? How's it going?

Editado: Mar 17, 2020, 4:16 pm

I am using my days away from my job a Permanent Building Sub for an Elementary School to work on cataloging books for my classroom, library when I finish my licensing in about 18 months.

It has been a productive few days since my last day of school ob Thursday. I've added almost 100 books to my library, organized books better, and put barcodes (thanks LT!) in over 250 books.

Lots more to do. I still have over 800 books without barcodes and a few more boxes of books to catalog, label and barcode. So need to get back to work!

Mar 17, 2020, 8:25 pm

It's the electronic Luddite here.

I may be retired but you couldn't tell it from the amount of "stuff" that goes through this computer. My machine is a Dell Core I7 laptop. I use an external kb and mouse. My desk is the dining room table. My chair is a late 18th or early 19th century Windsor armchair with the top of it broken - why else would I be allowed to use it. I use 2 monitors.

My go to tool for most stuff is Evernote. All paper gets scanned into Evernote. The search engine can almost always find it. All paper goes into a box under the table. I start a new box at the beginning of each quarter. I do not use the web version since they have a straight Windows version.

All files live in Dropbox. I know there are others but I started with that and see no reason to change.

I have the following stuff opened on tabs in Chrome: LT (duh), Acurite (a weather station), Google calendar, Alexa for my Echo and a news source. All other web stuff I open and close.

I use eM Client for email as I'm managing about 10 different mail accounts for myself and 3 other organizations I support.

No food or drink in this room. The kitchen is 10 ft away so I go in there and read something on some kind of tablet but not my phone. . . too small.

Since I am retired (or gainfully unemployed. . . take your pick), I normally don't look at the box until about 730 or 8. I'm religious about not looking at anything after 9 PM.

Dogs always get walked and I spend an hour outside every day as the punch list is always a mile long. Having a routine eliminates a lot of wasted time on this stupid machine!

Mar 18, 2020, 5:47 am

My company is still debating how to do it...
Won't let us otherwise.

Mar 18, 2020, 8:49 am

After years of working in education and social services, I started working from home on medical outreach projects in the mid-oughts.

I think a lot of people will do it until they don't have to anymore. At the same time, some companies and some workers will figure out it's a lot cheaper to use remote workers, so this might be a bigger sea-change for the U.S. workforce than anyone has anticipated.

There is a learning curve for everyone involved if you're new to this. Friends and family have to learn that a workday is a workday no matter where it happens. For me, it has helped to have some structure to my day. Getting fully dressed and knowing when I can and should take a break helps. It gets intuitive after a while.

Mar 18, 2020, 10:13 am

I've been working at home since this morning. I think I have my technology under control. Two slack workspaces, trello, zoom, google drive, a couple of specific docx, direct links to server, FTPclient, teamviewer, Intranet and email.

Plus of course social tabs as well - another 2 different emails, twitter, FB, BBCnews, PublicHealthEngland and work website.

Mar 18, 2020, 11:00 am

Been working from home for a good twelve years now; freelance copy editing, etc. Social distancing is not an issue, as after MrsHouseLibrary died 16 months ago, I just don't get out on a regular basis. And now, they've shut down Open Mic Night!
Working from home is easy if you've got the discipline -- or the tenacity to put in a full 8 hours a day, even if that takes 15 hours overall. I take a lot of guitar breaks to rest my eyes.

Mar 18, 2020, 3:53 pm

Dear dear WHL, I had no idea of your loss. I am so very sorry. You are in my heart.

Mar 18, 2020, 8:57 pm

I join in Merry's sentiments. I'm so sorry.

Mar 19, 2020, 3:18 pm

I agree with Kristi in the blog... Take a Lunch Break ! .. so many of my colleagues don't do that, and work through the whole day.. I find I need to do that, take a break, do something else.. just get away from the screen and clear your head.. take those little breaks as well... go get the post, go put the bins out... don't be a slave to the pixels.

Mar 19, 2020, 5:23 pm

I've also been working from home for 12+ years now. Much, much harder with kids home, for sure.

Is the picture of someone bicycling in front of a desk a LibraryThing person? I got an "under-desk cycle" thing a few years back but it didn't feel like my desk was the right height for it. I'm not sure ergonomics work at all, but change would be nice.

Mar 19, 2020, 10:25 pm

>11 khedron:

No. I tried it for a while, but it was tiring. You can't actually think as hard and as well when you are exercising.

Mar 21, 2020, 3:07 pm

>12 timspalding: "You can't actually think as hard and as well when you are exercising"
.. then a desk-bike is just the thing for doing the "rote" work of entering and checking books on LT!
I agree that I probably could not have used one while being an active computer programmer.
"Retired" from the work force to be a full-time professional parent after Number 5 was born.
Which is probably why I have 10K books and counting....

Mar 21, 2020, 4:34 pm

// >13 librisissimo: I have been "gainfully unemployed" since 2008. I'm slowly plowing through items to be cataloged. I thought when I left the paid work force, I would have time to work on the collection. . . well I'm at least 2 years behind on books and let's not even talk about the ephemera. As curator of the Sanderson Museum in Chadds Ford PA and the membership person for several groups and my wife's operation manager for her greenhouses (smart ass name for a go-fer) the time just disappears. After 5 pm, I'm not in a position to catalog so I read!

My wife and I are also the day care person for our 8 month old grandson but right now that is on hiatus due to COVID-19. It is a lot of fun because I don't remember anything about our daughter when she was little. Now we both missing him a bunch!

Such is life. //

Mar 21, 2020, 5:24 pm

My wife and I have been working at home for a long time so we're used to it. Sixteen years for me, forever in her case. It's a non-profit and home-operated business basically, though it does also normally involve a lot of travelling. Not so much these past few weeks, since nothing is going on. Gives us a break and time to actually catch up a bit on reading for the first time in years. And for my wife, art and piano, which unfortunately I don't have any skill in.

I do maintain the computers; there are about fifteen in the house, counting all the various mobile, laptops and desktops, plus printer / scanners, multiple phone lines, fax, shared storage drives, etc. Some are occasionally used by volunteers who help out, but that hasn't happened in a while. There are two TVs for relaxation, though we don't use them much. We cut the cable years ago and mostly use them for streaming news (bleak !), sports (of which there are of course none these days) and the occasional movie from YouTube.

We have two cats who follow us around to where we are working and curl up most of the day, or lick each other, or meow for food and milk and treats or to be let out (if the weather is good). We will also be able to sit out on the back deck and read / work when it starts to warm up a bit more. Normally I have about three desktop computers at once arrayed in front of me: one mostly for web stuff and downloading, one for mainly administrative stuff but also storage for podcasts, audio books, e-books, etc. The third mostly for backup and also for LT'ing. One advantage to working at home for your own business is you can mix work and personal and leisure as you please and go back and forth depending on your motivation and schedule.

We live in a three-story townhouse with seven rooms. There are thousands of books and periodicals everywhere, accumulated over the years. More room for them now that the kids have all flown the coop. These (the books, not the kids) are slowly getting organized and catalogued and shelved. There is a little note on the wall of my profile page regarding the technical details of this.

So working from home is nothing new, though the isolation is. We still try and go out for walks (a daily constitutional !) around the town as much as we can. We see the kids on a regular basis, maybe more than we should ? Who knows ? Though probably less regular than before all this. There are two grandkids, but we have not seen those in a few weeks now.

Editado: Mar 22, 2020, 9:01 pm

All the talk about working from home is great for those who can, but for others that is not an option. For many of us the prospect of losing our jobs is unsettling. There goes health insurance and maybe your house. Trying to find another job with adequate pay will be difficult with all the others in the same boat, especially for those in their 60s. My wife has lost her job and mine is barely hanging on. If this goes on for any length of time neither business will survive.
What is the point of staying healthy and not dying if you're going to lose every f**king thing in the end anyway?

We can't count on the government for help. They were ill prepared for this crisis like they are for all the others. Remember the post Katrina cluster f**k?

Edit: 'There are thousands of books and periodicals everywhere, accumulated over the years.' (#15) I also have thousand and what is going to happen if I lose the house. I'm sure the bank won't give a crap. It'll be, 'Mr. Lamson you have until Friday to vacate.'

Yep, this is kind of negative.

Mar 29, 2020, 3:37 pm

I am climbing the walls. And I found that I'm way too much of a hypochondriac to be okay with an apocalypse that doesn't have zombies in it. I bought a thermometer. Need I say more?

Mar 29, 2020, 5:34 pm

>17 SomeGuyInVirginia: Of course! We want the details.

Mar 30, 2020, 5:48 am

I'm a professor. I've finally gotten from 18 hour days trying to adjust to teaching engineering classes (that have labs) in an online environment to a more normal (8-12 hours, depending) work schedule. I'm finally on "Spring Break" so I get some time to breathe, and do normal things like catch up on the unending piles of grading. And read the couple dozen library books I hoarded a couple weeks ago when I knew my college's library was about to close.

I never wanted to teach online classes. I do not enjoy teaching online classes. Once this is over, I hope to never teach another online class ever again for as long as I live.

Thankfully, I had already recently moved my desk from my basement up to my living room and made myself a great little office nook, which helped enormously, even just psychologically. When things would get overwhelming I'd walk 5 feet away from my "work zone" and relax for a few minutes.

As I'm reading your blog post I'm noticing how many of the things I did without realizing how helpful they are. I bought myself cut flowers for my desk (never do that). I had a diffuser I almost never used, put it on my desk, put in some invigorating essential oils, used the light feature too so I'd have more color and light at my desk. I've also been doing an hour of yoga every day. I'm practically burning holes in my yoga mat. (A pandemic was not what I had in mind when I said to myself "I should really get more into my yoga practice" earlier in the year.)

Meanwhile I'm keeping things in perspective. I still have a job. I'm young and otherwise very healthy. I can get through this. My heart goes out to those who are really struggling.

Mar 30, 2020, 4:34 pm

Lesson learned: Don't leave your tablet in a spot on the dining room table that will get direct sunlight - it will overheat and shut you down.

Mar 31, 2020, 8:21 pm

I work in a warehouse, unloading mail packages from aircraft shipping containers. I've suggested that they get the trucks to drop off the containers to our homes, and we unload them there, but for some reason they won't agree to it.

Abr 13, 2020, 4:25 pm

What can I say. It is just like normal but more intense. I have been a freelance home worker with my wife for over 20 years. Often we would do projects out of the house. Now it is all in the house. 3 of us, mother, father, daughter. It is not easy but I guess we are coping better than some because the house is all kitted out. Rather relieved the parents are no longer here to see this, and we are all 60 or under. Making major efforts on library thing, many books and covers scanned . Another huge effort on image scanning see and Flickr. And another huge effort on Ebay because our specialism is transport ephemera and publicity and where we receive multiple pieces we vend them to good effect! In the lockdown we would be lost without that thread. So tough times, keep safe but folk with mutual interests welcome to interact.

Abr 13, 2020, 4:31 pm

Sounds like us. My reply is 22.

Abr 13, 2020, 4:58 pm

>23 RobertForsythe: It is not clear who you are responding to. If you type > and the number of the message you are responding to, you will get a link to that message showing the membername.