43 Folders

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Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.

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”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.


Introducing “43 Folders Clips”

43 Folders Clips (RSS)

If you're curious about the stuff that gets my attention and inspires me (and, consequently, inspires the longer essays you see here on 43 Folders), you may enjoy my informal new sub-blog, 43 Folders Clips.

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The Exile's Return or, Still Waters Run Bleachers

What Happened to 43Folders.com? | Ask Metafilter

MeFi user, Gerard Sorme, asked a good question over on Ask Metafilter:

Merlin Mann has been a prolific blogger, and one of the better productivity bloggers, at 43folders.com. Yet, he's disappeared! 43Folders last post was on September 25th. This is an eternity for this blog - and for Merlin. He had some other projects, but I can't find a record of his presence anywhere online since late September.

Heh. I don't think I'm that hard to find online, but I was happy to respond to Gerard as to why I haven't posted anything new here in a while:

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43 Folders: Time, Attention, and Creative Work

["what is this?"]

Here's something I wrote last week for this site's new "About" page:

43 Folders is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

Call it a motto, or a charter, or -- if you have to -- a "mission statement." But, for both of us, it's a stake in the ground that keeps me focused on what I feel best suited to do for you with this site right now.

I want to help you identify and remove any obstacle that keeps you from making things that you love. And then I want to help you figure out how to make those things even better. That's pretty much it.

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43f Program Note: The Week Our Gears Shift

Reserve Reading: kung fu grippe - "Better"

In light of some new directions I'm taking with my work, 43 Folders is changing focus and approach from being the "blog about productivity" that many readers may view it as today.

So, this week, I'll be presenting a few articles that touch on where I'm heading with this stuff, and why.

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Admin: Why a Footer in 43 Folders Feed Items?

Why a Footer in 43 Folders Feed Items?

We've added a footer to items that appear in the 43 Folders RSS feed. Here's why.

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Know your smoke

Is your car smoking from the exhaust pipe?

Reader wemerson was kind enough to correct me on my metaphor in the previous post about tracking down the sources of whining in your life. Turns out that my use of "white smoke" was incorrect. Many thanks -- and I made the correction.

To share the information and prevent future slightly-appropriate-metaphor-makers from repeating my error, here's how to tell what's wrong with your car based on the color of smoke coming out of your tailpipe. From trustmymechanic.com:

  • White smoke: White smoke is caused by water and or antifreeze entering the cylinder, and the engine trying to burn it with the fuel. The white smoke is steam...
  • Blue Smoke: Blue smoke is caused by engine oil entering the cylinder area and being burned along with the fuel air mixture. As with the white smoke, just a small drop of oil leaking into the cylinder can produce blue smoke out the tailpipe...
  • Black Smoke: Black smoke is caused by excess fuel that has entered the cylinder area and cannot be burned completely. Another term for excess fuel is "running rich." Poor fuel mileage is also a common complaint when black smoke comes out of the tailpipe.

Related: in the event that a conclave at the Sistine Chapel has been voting on who the next Pope shall be, here's what Wikipedia says to watch for in terms of smoke (emphasis added):

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An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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