Concurrency in Everyday Life – APPLIED

As a developer, everyday I face tasks that I need to schedule them to execute concurrently -in parallel- to maximise speed, efficiency and for many other reasons. Personal computers these days are characterised by the ability to multitask and provide pleasant experience and immediate response to the end user.

Often, when I have to do a task in real life, I don’t schedule properly and I end up on wasting energy, good mood and resources. So today, I tried to optimise the planning of my daily tasks and save time, mood and resources by planning them properly first.

Lets have a counter-example on efficiency and speed:

The typical Sunday Morning Breakfast:

You don’t have to rush for anything because it’s Sunday (duh) and you normally don’t go to church, no matter that you were studying at an orthodox elementary school. (God Bless, but this is another post’s business). So, you are really lazy getting out of bed and when you do, you read your email, your feeds as well as all other social network notifications without even going to the bathroom first, some of the times (c’mon, you also do it people).

When you are already bored after an hour of useless procrastination, you go to the bathroom, you brush your teeth -before breakfast, well done- and then you go to the kitchen. You are preparing some coffee -without eating first- and you drink 1/4 of it. After that you can hear your stomach growling which is becoming more and more demanding and you prepare a sandwich. You eat the sandwich and congratulations, your coffee is now snow-cold. You drink your cold coffee, you wash your teeth again…

To make a long story short, I don’t judge this behavior, I do most of these things when I do not have anything planned or I am burned out – overworked and I am not afraid to admit it.

Also I am not afraid to admit that I am one of the followers of the philosophy:

The most relaxing holidays are those which you eat junk food, biscuits, watch series, read feeds and generally procrastinate around ALL DAY LONG.

Most people know that all of this, even if it is a bit exaggerated, it is true.

If you claim that you don’t belong to this group of people, you are probably not reading these words, which is of course false, so I declare it as an axiom that you belong and this is it.

You cannot win, sorry.

Anyway, if you do that every day, I don’t think that you will manage to get anything completed at the end of the day.

Below, you can find a highly optimised weekday of mine, where I also have to do dull stuff like housework.

Let’s see how the story goes:

One day I had to be finished with all the housework in 3 hours, so I planned my evening as described below. At first, I made a list of things I needed to do.

  • wash clothes
  • dry clothes
  • grocery shopping
  • office, acquire form
  • complete form
  • office, submit form
  • prepare food
  • eat

Some background information-details for the problem:

  • I do not own a washing machine, I have to walk 100 meters and carry my clothes, the card that opens the laundry room door and detergent.
  • After the clothes are washed you must be on time to collect them or face danger of finding no clothes (laundry unlocks). Also, I always dry my clothes using the dryer, because London’s weather is not appropriate for drying clothes and the radiator is too small and lightweight to do the job correctly.
  • After drying is finished you must also be there to collect your clothes, same as above.
  • I own a bike and if I am fast enough I can do the shopping in nearly 30 minutes.
  • The office I need to acquire and submit the form is next to the laundry.
  • My food can be prepared and eaten in approximately 30-40 minutes (usually I watch a House MD episode while eating too)

So far, so good, so what.

The story goes as following:

I took all of the clothes in a bag, along with washing powder, my bag, and headed for the launderette. After the clothes were in and the circle had begun (40 mins), I scheduled my alarm to countdown half an hour, got my bike and gone to the supermarket.

I had a list that it was sorted by product-corridor, meaning that I did not have to return any items, I was just moving forwards. I finished on time when my alarm rang and I drove back to the launderette.

I arrived 3 minutes earlier and the washing circle hadn’t finished yet. I entered the office and I acquired the form as well as some details on how to fill it. Afterwards, I just took the clothes from the laundry and started the dryer circle.

As I have told, this takes 50 minutes so I went back with the groceries, made two sandwiches and wedges, sorted all the things, ate, completed the form and then back to the office.

After submitting the form, the drying was already finished, so I just had to collect the clothes and take them back to my room. After I sorted them out, I was finished and I also had one hour to spare in order to prepare a draft of this post here.

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