Five cool ways to save time and be more productive

I’ve always been a keen student of technology and productivity. Here are some of the ways I use technology to be more efficient and effective.

      1. Supermarket Queue Chooser app. There is almost nothing worse than choosing the slower queue in the supermarket … or worse still swapping, only to see your old queue go faster. This app uses the video on your phone to estimate speed of up to three queues based on number of items, demographic of the people and the speed of server, and gives a probability of which will be faster.
      2. Watch movies at 123% speed. There was a study out of Stanford that we can increase speed of video at between 15% and 25% without diminishing the experience depending on the person. I do 23%, and save myself on average 21 minutes per movie. Make sure you get a DVD player that has this capacity, such as the Sony DsNtExst3560.
      3. Use OptimalLane.com.au to choose lanes. The boffins behind this website have calculated that you can save on average 4 minutes on a half hour trip in heavy traffic by knowing which lanes go faster. They have data on all major roads in every major city in Australia. Worth spending some time studying any routes you regularly travel, and learning which lane you should be in.
      4. Outsource meditation. Another study, this one out of the University of Chicago, has measured that if you have someone else meditating on your behalf for 20 minutes, and you are conscious of when they start and when they finish, you get 47% of the benefit you would if you were doing the meditation yourself. Check out the Meditate 4U website.                                                                               WFP 20140401
      5. Hit the button at the crossing repeatedly. My brother’s mate is head of IT at Corrigan Electrics, the company that has put in about 40% of the pedestrian crossings in Melbourne. He’s programmed the algorithm, and added something that means if the button is hit 10 times in less than 3 seconds, it brings the green man 20% early. It might only save a few seconds, but every second counts.

Love to hear your thoughts, what cool ways do you use to save time and be more productive? You can leave them below.