Going on Hiatus

I’m going to be taking a break from this blog for awhile, while I concentrate on learning about databases and data technology.  You can keep up with me there (URL: cs.jeffreymichaeljackson.com) to see what I’m up to and what my goals are.  You might still catch a random article at this site, but no more regular goal postings, since that will be covered in more detail at the cs. site.

Until then, I am:

Yours Truly,


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October Goals

I’m trying to keep it minimal this month since I’m getting married and will be pre-occupied.

  1. Take Chinese lessons every morning up to the wedding
  2. Get LCD working with Arduino (waiting on parts to arrive)
  3. Submit plans to city for renovation
  4. Submit deliquent A/R to collection agencirs
  5. Continue taking Krav Maga 3x /week
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Launching mini-ad campaign, and other Green Cart shenanigans

green cart sandwich with small catering ad sticker


So, I’ve been reading more about advertising and marketing lately, specifically Gary Halbert  (you should check this site out, this guy is a genius and one of the pioneers of modern online advertising and copywriting).  The more I read about this stuff, the more I want to try it out.  Meanwhile, we decided to launch a catering division over at the Green Cart, so I figured this is a great opportunity to start writing some ads and see how they fare.

I’ll be writing in the grand old style of the classified ad, attaching Continue reading

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September goals

  1. Continue using daily calendar to plan day ahead of time and track accuracy of predictions
  2. Continue Krav Maga 3x / week
  3. Get LED screen to work with Arduino
  4. Get up by 8 am every day
  5. Make decision to close TacoBot or commit to a target market
  6. [get florist and baker contracts finished]*
  7. Stop by Progressive to talk to office manager re: food project
  8. Cleanup A/P in QuickBooks for Green Cart

* This also depends on other people, maybe it shouldn’t be on this list since it isn’t really in my control

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Interview with a Productivity Fiend

a highly productive individual flosses vigorously

Flossing: the hallmark of a self-disciplined individual

A friend of mine has a track record of achieving impressive feats that require lots of discipline and work.  To wit:

  • Taught himself Calculus over the summer when he was 16
  • Graduated high school in 3 years with a 4.0 GPA
  • Graduated college in 3 years with a BS in Math (age 20) with a ~ 4.0 GPA
  • Semi-pro mountain bike racer
  • Wrote an instructional book on the statistics programming language R
  • Acheived a broad and deep understanding of Data Science, R, and Data Visualization during his postgraduate studies (apparently there’s alot to this)
  • Gets up at 4:30 every morning

I asked him for an interview because I knew he was such a dedicated and disciplined worker.  I was curious to learn what techniques he used to stay on task to achieve such taxing feats of both physical and mental discipline.  Specifically, I was curious about what role routine and habit played in his daily life (a big one, it turns out) and Continue reading

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First quickbooks script completed!

Check it out:

As you may have guessed, I also used this as an opportunity to play with Camtasia, and set my microphone sensitivity too high :)

This is a pretty weak script because some of  it relies on mouse position (and its application is on a server, no less… whose mouse positions change based on the client’s monitor….)

BUT this completes one of my goals for the month.  I’m thinking that as I make these (with stronger code) I’ll post them to the blog at ninjabookkeeping.com as downloadable .exes and either give them away or charge $5 etc. for them.

If I go through with my plan to become the organizer of a Quickbooks meetup group here in Austin, I’m sure I’ll get plenty of feedback from people (both on the blog itself and in person) on other scripts to write that would be useful.  I think this might also be a good way to start getting some traffic to the site (through being mentioned on the meetup people’s blogs, etc) and more attention in general.

Let me know what you think! This is also only my second time messing with camtasia… hopefully quality will improve there in the future too.

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Ninjabooks.com first edition is finished!

So the final version of ninjabookkeeping.com is done.  I’m sure I’ll continue to revise it as time goes on, especially as I test different marketing strategies and get feedback from things like Google Adwords.  The final incarnation of this website will probably look a lot different- and a lot more targeted at a specific niche- than this one. Continue reading

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Knights of Columbus letter (followup to prev post)

Well, I suppose this is kind of goofy.

Anyway, I wrote the Knights of Columbus a letter asking them to change their name today for the sake of my spiritual Continue reading

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How, and why, to organize yourself (my implementation of David Allen’s Getting Things Done)

indian bureauocrat by Jan Banning

This is an Indian bureaucrat, from an interesting art project by Jan Banning

I believe in David Allen’s theory of consciousness from the  book Getting Things Done.  In it, he describes how every commitment you make- large or small, to yourself or anyone else- is recorded by some small part of your being.  That part of your being will not be at peace until that commitment is completed.  Furthermore, that part of your being always thinks you should be doing that task right now and will not rest until you have.  It may be overridden, ignored, or drowned-out by competing interests… but until you have disavowed the commitment or completed the action, it remains an alive and dissatisfied part of you.  Allen calls these incomplete commitments open loops.

The rest of the book is dedicated to the proper tracking, completion, delegation, or deletion of these open psychic loops.  Clearing all of the open loops isn’t the goal, because they crop up too fast and are a necessary part of an effective person’s life. Allen proposes that true peace involves knowing that all of your open loops are being accounted for in a reliable system so that when you are relaxing, you can be at peace knowing that the open loops are accounted for and not floating around in some forgetful or guilty-feeling part of your brain, ready to ambush you, or just quietly contributing to an inexplicable sense of never-ending urgency and inability to relax.

My organizational system draws heavily from the system mapped out in Allen’s book, so I’ll explain the basics of his system.  Then I’ll describe what parts of it I actually use. Continue reading

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August 2011 Goals

Without further ado:


  1. Spend the money to actually sign up and go to Krav Maga classes 3x/week (heldover from last month)


  1. Write a useful AutoIt script for Green Cart’s Quickbooks reporting
  2. Complete sales launch for breakfast tacos


  1. Plan and actually do San Antonio weekend trip (heldover from last month)
  2. Make decision and purchase rings (heldover from last month)


  1. Wake up at 7:30 every day


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