What better way is there to look back at the year than to see what you did? Thankfully, I track every task I do using a web-based solution. Not only does this provide me with helpful organization tools in the present, but it also allows me to look back and see what I am working on the most. Despite having all this data readily accessible, this is probably the least scientifically accurate of my charts. Still, if you would like to duplicate my effort, I invite you to do so.
- Track every task you complete using Hiveminder.
- For every task, add relevant tags. (Such as “English” for an English assignment)
- Go to this page to find a listing of every task you completed in 2007.
- Use clever counting techniques to count the number of tasks on that page.
- On the left side, you will see a tag cloud. Look for the biggest tags and click them.
- On the tag pages, again count the number of tasks and record them.
- Open up your favorite graphic design application.
- Draw a circle with a radius equal to the number of tasks tagged with your most common tag, multiplied by 3.
- Chose an appropriate color for the circle and bump the transparency down to 50%.
- Add a label to your circle.
- Repeat steps 8 through 10 for all of your top tags.
- Place your circles so that they overlap logically. Look at the tags shared by tasks and figure out where circles overlap.
- Embellish as needed, perhaps adding a count of your total number of tasks (which you found in step 4).
You should now be admiring a reasonably accurate picture of the work you did over the past year. Though it is not entirely scientific (particularly step 12), it should provide a good reflection upon where you are focusing your energy, and where you should focus more of it. For me, I realized I should be doing more writing outside of school as well as doing some more community work. It was also disheartening to see how much of my French work is reading rather than speaking. If you have any more questions, feel free to comment. I am also planning to extend this series with some basic color and design theory.
This is part 3 of a series upon how I produced my annual report. Stay tuned for part 4.