STOPTHAT - Working With Projects

The work I do is highly project-based, and I need to account for my time based on what project I am undertaking. Thinking of things in terms of projects also helps me stay focused and get more things accomplished. Naturally the software needed to support projects.

  • Anti-Projects
    1. Anti-Projects
  • Projects
    1. Projects
    2. Ongoing Projects
    3. Old Projects

There are four types of projects (so far) in this software, but they are not all equal parts. There is first a big division between what I call “projects” and “anti-projects”. Then there are three kinds of projects.

Project vs. Anti-Project

There is a major division between what I am calling projects and anti-projects. A project is something you do work on towards a certain goal or for a certain purpose. An anti-project is what you do when you are not working on projects.

Anti-project IDs have a unique limit to them. They are all only one character long. This gives the software an easy way to recognize an anti-project from a project, which turns out to be quite useful in the code. Sure, this limits the number of anti-projects you can have, but I try to keep the number under ten anyway.

For example, let's say your project is building a house. You know it's a project because it has a goal. You may never finish, but all the work you do goes towards the same purpose. In that case, an anti-project would be anything that is not working on the house, like eating lunch, taking a break, or sleeping.

Now, you could think of things like eating and sleeping as their own project, but I don't. They feel distinctly different, because they are things that cut into your time available for projects.

Different Kinds Of Projects

So far there are three kinds of projects.

These are your garden-variety, current set of projects. These usually have an end point and a finite quality. These are essentially “current projects” that are still open and that you want to work on, at least some of the time.
Ongoing Projects
These are similar to basic projects, but they have no end in sight. You work on them here and there, but you will always be working on them. This could be something like getting fit, or practicing yo-yo. These are things you want to think of as projects, but that are not regular, finite projects.
Keep old projects around in this category for as far back as you want to run reports and create timelines from your old data.
Old Projects
These are regular projects that have been moved out of the main project area because they are not likely to see new work. However, we keep them around for several reasons. We keep them around in case we do a little work on them, here and there, despite being old. And we keep them around so that they will still be defined when we run reports or timelines against the old data.