Developers are often criticised for isolating themselves from the outside world with headphones or preferring to work at night. It seems to me that sometimes both are a necessity to reduce the distractions of office work, rather than some inherent sociopathy. For instance, I find it really difficult to work if a radio is on a talk-only station. The brain starts to concentrate on what is being said rather than the flow or objects it’s supposed to be working on. It’s a bit like trying to do the Fibonacci sequence in your head and someone says “17” – you lose the plot and have to start again. If that happens too much then you try to get away from the source of the interruption. Recently I have had to resort to some of those there Bose headphones because the Work From Home edict has resulted in 3 people milling aimlessly around outside my office. I had been remote-working for many years. Peacefully. But now look! I mean, don’t these people have anything to do? I asked one that I vaguely recognised, turns out she was my wife, what the rubbery-duck she thought she was doing, and she said ‘Urgently organising the comms for the doctors to use in a new hospital. Yourself?’, which rather trumped my feeble ‘putting my pens in colour order. Again.’

Where was I?

So, what to listen to that can blank out the hubbub but not be too hubbubalicious in itself?

Here’s my current list of go-to * tracks in no particular order :-

  • Jean-Michel Jarre – Zoolook (except track 2 which is a right pain)
  • Dark Side of The Moog – Vol. 11
  • Axel Rudi Pell – Land of the Giants
  • W.A.S.P. – The Headless Children (tracks 1-4)
  • Fleetwood Mac – Rumours, Tusk (most of it, but not the smashy ones like Not That Funny)
  • Hawkwind – pretty much anything pre-1980
  • Fairport Convention (early stuff, not too much at once though)
  • Motorhead – any of my 40+ albums. Might have blown my cover there.
  • Alabama 3 – Exile on Coldharbour Lane, La Peste

It might be different next week, of course 🙂

* goto? Who said goto? We’ll have none of that around here. Except in a hasty .bat file.