If you haven't played around with the map view for today's XKCD, first read it
I'll wait, seriously. Go ahead. I've got time.
Ok good, now you've probably spent the last 20 minutes (or 20 minutes earlier today) playing around with it, and you've found it amazing. Inspiring. Beautiful. But you're worried you've wasted your time: you didn't LEARN anything and you didn't DO anything. SHIT! Better get back to work! Better get productive.
Slow down. You might have done the most productive thing you could possibly have done.
Many people, notably (for me) Timothy Lister in the book Peopleware have contended that physical windows to the outside world, and ideally with as long of a view as possible, are incredibly important for creative work (which is basically all work). The reason? Problems that don't have obvious solutions require a kind of thinking that is facilitated by having as open a mind and as large of a view as possible. Walls inhibit this kind of thinking.
My contention is that today's XKCD is the largest and most beautiful window you could possibly have. I'm in a unique position where my work is whatever I want it to be for the next few weeks. After playing around with today's XKCD, I reached out to an old friend, found out he needs a show booked in my hometown in October for his band, reached out to 5 venues and got a good lead, made contact with the company I most want to work for that was positively received, wrote this blog, and am now going to a meeting I just set up about one of my side projects I've left for too long. I became instantly productive on solving problems I wasn't even thinking about before I read the comic.
What did you do after you read it? (Seriously I want to know)
Follow me @ twitter.com/istommydrunk
http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=4544257 (for those seeking to upvote on HN, if you exist)