Tab bankruptcy

I’m no Larry Lessig, but I get a fair amount of email these days. Still, I’m not yet at the point, and hope never to be at the point, where I would ever declare email bankruptcy. I already get over 200 non-spam email messages a day, but if at some point I can’t deal with that, I won’t delete my inbox — instead, I’ll refactor my definition of spam.

I do have a much more serious problem with browser tab overload, however. I’m trying to follow a lot of topics right now, and that number declines only with great effort. I wind up pushing Firefox to its limits. Firefox is a huge help with this problem, though: it crashes a lot, and session restore fails a lot. Thanks, Mozilla! Man, otherwise, I’d be completely screwed.

So, for the record: Dear person whose feed sent me a surely fascinating but yet-unread blog post, I apologize, but I am declaring tab bankruptcy. I will do so every Saturday from now on. If I haven’t gotten back to that tab by Saturday morning, I’m force-quitting Firefox and no, dammit, I won’t try to restore my last session.

I very much like what Jeremy Zawodny wrote about this last February:

The hardest thing I have to do every day is to decide what to ignore.

Running a startup is a great way to learn how to, and how not to, ignore the right things. You should mostly ignore your competitors and mostly ignore the minor ups and downs that feel fantastic or terrible when they happen. You should pay a huge amount of attention to the unbiased people who are actually using your product or service — not friends or enemies or professional commentators, but people who show up through a search, sign up and give it a try. Ignore everything that makes you miserable, pay tons of attention to everything that makes you happy and productive. Ask someone for help every day. And call your friends, you nincompoop.

If you’re spending more time dealing with browser tabs than any of the above, don’t wait for the browser to crash. Just quit. “You are about to close 67 tabs. Are you sure you want to continue?” Oh, yes, I’m sure.