An aspirational home screen for 2018
· 3 minute read
It’s1 the start of a new year, and thus a good opportunity to think about how the next 365 days can improve upon their predecessors. I’ve spent a inordinate amount of time in recent months considering how the software in my life can can be more of a means and less of an end, and as such have am starting 2018 with the following:
For many years, my home screen reflected the apps that I used the most, a self-fulfilling prophecy if there ever was one. I used Tweetbot so much that it seemed to very obviously deserve a spot in my dock, guaranteeing that I’d continue to use it a ton without considering whether or not that was actually the intention. Instead, I’m now trying what I hope will be prescriptive of the habits I want to engrain2 – most of them offline as opposed to online – rather than descriptive of my status quo.
Tweetbot hasn’t only been removed from my dock and home screen3, but from my phone altogether. I first replaced it with the official Twitter app, an app that I find less enjoyable to the point where I figured it’d help me kick the habit, but it didn’t, and as such Twitter is also gone (in favor of Nuzzel and TwiM4). Same with email; once badged and in the dock, but now buried in a folder without any such adornments or permissions.
I have a real love-hate relationship with Twitter. It has – at times – brought me immense joy, knowledge, and offline friendships that I value dearly to this day. I truly consider it to be my most important professional network. Conversely, I’ve found it to be a time-suck that I’m drawn to like no other. And it’s important to me that I change that.
Replace "because I got high" with "because I was opened Twitter" and the song works pretty much just as good— jason brennan (@jasonbrennan) July 27, 2017
The blessing and curse of the modern mobile operating system – depending on your self-control – is that your phone can take on any form you’d like: a machine for Twitter and games, a tool that encourages an active and present lifestyle, or in most cases, something in between. Without a right answer, the best that I think you can do is to make sure that you’re consciously deciding.
Well, it was. ↩
Meditation being perhaps the boldest example of this. I’ve not meditated prior to this year, and don’t necessarily intend to make it a regular part of my routine. But I know I want to do it more than I have in the past, and putting it front and center is the best way I can think of to accomplish that. Even if only on occasion. ↩
Please don’t misunderstand this as anything but the most effusive of praise for Tweetbot, both as a longtime customer but also as a software developer who very frequently finds their mastery of the craft maddeningly jealousy-producing. ↩
I still use Mobile Safari to visit twitter.com more often than I wish I did, but it’s an improvement that I’ll take for now. ↩