Music for productivity?

(Darren Gough) #1

This follows on from the WFH thread a little, because I’m interested in ways to make home working as productive and fulfilling as possible.

Music/noise; do you prefer the sound of silence, banging death metal, or maybe this

Personally, I absolutely love this site. I’ve found having something soothing in the background helps me focus most vs. silence but occasionally I need to break that up with some spotify playlist action.

Curious to know what people’s preferences are - any good tips, songs, websites you’ve found? I think @Todd_Nilson has something good although I can’t recall what it is. Todd?

What does your desk say about you?
(Sarah Hawk) #2

I find it incredibly hard to concentrate with music on, much to the disgust of my boyfriend, who frequently works beside me and loves having music playing.

I didn’t used to be like this. We used to have music playing all the time when I worked in an office. I think that working alone from home has changed me!

(Todd Nilson) #3

I have had very good luck with as a soundtrack for work. They have tracks for all kinds of work styles including sleep and relaxation tracks. There’s a free trial but the subscription is just a few dollars per month and I’ve found it well worth it.

Also, it’s based on Science!

(Gear Buzz) #4

I sometimes like working to baroque music

It’s very mathematical and tends to cascade or meander to a “resolve”. I enjoy being taken along with it.

Sometimes I like the John Barry soundtracks to the 60’s thriller movies The Ipcress Files and Get Carter. They are good for scheming / masterminding / on a global scale!

On a general non work music tip I like this recently. I find it very “meditative”. Emo techno?

Click the link below to listen to Swept by Kiasmos


(Darren Gough) #5

thanks @Gear_Buzz. Never thought about using soundtracks before but that’s a cool idea. Will give it a go.

I also think you might like Bonobo

(Richard Millington) #6

I tend to use the programmers playlist on spotify.

Wouldn’t work for everyone, but it works for me.

(Darren Gough) #7

This one?

(Richard Millington) #8

yes, usually.

(Jennifer Zowada) #9

Listening to this now, this is great!

(Nick Emmett) #10

I like to have music on in general, unless I need to be completely head down focused on something.

Depends on lots of things for me though as to what it ends up being, it could be anything from some mellow jazz, big band jazz, some really chilled out Einaudi or, like @Gear_Buzz I enjoy a nice bit of film score in the background (as a side note, film scores are on of my geek things, I love them and have 250+ in the collection).

(Darren Gough) #11

Anyone watch Suits? Always thought it would be cool to have a record deck in the office with a great selections of soul, blues and jazz like Harvey!

(Nick Emmett) #12

I’ve not seen it but it certainly sounds like the kind of man cave I have inside my head!

(Bas van Leeuwen) #13

It really depends on the mood; but usually it is a form of electro music
Recently saw Tame Impala at Melt! festival, was pleased to see them being the opening track of the programmer’s playlist :slight_smile:

Interesting… I have the same thing with radio commercials, used to be able to filter them out completely, but since I’ve switched to (paid) spotify and other commercial free ones I can’t anymore. They go directly into my brain / thought process, it’s bizarre. Feels like I had a lot of brain cycles reserved to filtering out stuff like this (like I still have for banner ads on the internet) and years of non-training have made the filters shrink.

(Nick Emmett) #14

This reminds of the movie Demolition Man, where they don’t listen to mainstream music any longer and the airwaves are full of vintage radio and tv jingles!

(Travis King) #15

I’m the same as Hawk. Sometimes I think I’d like a little music, but I always come back to preferring to work in silence :smiley:

(Sarah Hawk) #16

That is exactly what it feels like!

I’ve learned to keep tasks aside that don’t require the same amount of processing power, so that if there is music or other noise, I can still be productive. For instance, I can’t write with music going, but I can pull stats.

(Jennifer Zowada) #17

love that show!

(Darren Gough) #18

That’s quite interesting. I think there is definitely a correlation between types of music and types of task. What I really miss with WFH is the office collaborative playlist we used to do at MSE.

The songs! The arguments! The fact this was completely inappropriate for the office but hell we played it anyways!

(Erlend Sogge Heggen) #19

I’m somewhere in the middle there. I don’t need to have music on while I’m working, but I usually don’t mind it at all. And if I’m gonna be working on something a bit tedious and brainless, I love putting some music on to help me zone out a bit.

Here’s one of my favorite playlists, recommended to me by one of my colleagues:

(btw I’m in no way implying that programming is brainless work! :sweat_smile: this music just happens to also work well for my less demanding brain activities)

(Darren Gough) #20

Opens with a stone cold classic! Adding this right now…