Re-distraction (redis)

Technology! Save us from technology.

  • November 2010
  • Plug-in for Productivity
  • In House Productivity Team

With time perhaps we won't need such things as these. We may be able to do them on our own someday.

It all started, one day a little while back, when I noticed that every time I would open a new tab in Chrome (command+T) my fingers would automatically begin typing out the letters f a c e b o o, followed by the return key, solidifying the action, directing me to Facebook. My intent wasn't originally to check Facebook, it was perhaps something related to work, something productive! So in this, I realized, I had a problem. And that I should find help.

I tried will power to no avail. I thought that I might hire someone to watch over me, or find a sponsor to keep me on track. No luck. The solution struck me one evening—when I was at my very lowest, sitting there facing five open tabs, all with Facebook on them—that I would use technology to condition myself away from Facebook. And we have it, Re-Distraction was born. A simple plug-in for Chrome that detects a user's navigation to Facebook, gently pushing (redirecting) the user on to something more fruitful. Something like TED, or Yale's Open Courses, or The New York Times. Anything other than Facebook.

Update: It is now the year 2020, and I am several years clean. I haven't used Facebook in earnest since 2016. I had admittedly updated my profile picture and background image, but that was all, and this act disgusted me greatly.

I believe with a little help and determination, we can accomplish anything if we put our hearts to it.

Re-distraction a productivity app