After recently reading “The Shallows: What the Internet is doing to our brains“, I’ve been a bit provoked about how much time I waste online when getting things done. Chasing hyperlinks to all kinds of content, checking twitter, get distracted by mail. Major context switching!
So I’m experimenting with a new workflow where I disable the network card on my PC , and just come online every few hours to clear the mailbox. It’s been quite a liberating experience so far.
Initially I had a good surf around for tools that might fit the bill to help with my new disconnected life. There’s some nice Windows tools like Cold Turkey to keep you off social networking sites, and Freedom to keep you off the web altogether, but I was really just after something lightweight to turn off my Windows 7 network card!
Turns out that the easiest way is to script up the netsh.exe tool that comes with Windows. With this bad boy, nicely discussed on this blog, I was up and running with a quick “online.bat” and “offline.bat” and was living the disconnected life. That magic shell command you need to disable your adaptor is:
netsh interface set interface "Local Area Connection" DISABLED
And of course, you’re back online with:
netsh interface set interface "Local Area Connection" ENABLED
Looking forward to reporting on my productivity wins with this new less-connected life!