TheServerSide is hosting a really good address by Neal Ford on programmer productivity in an enterprise called Productive Programmer: On the Lam from the Furniture Police.
He’s got some good thoughts on how the mind works and how to structure things to maximize productivity. A lot of it is very similar to info in The Pragmatic Programmer, which I also recommend.
Here’s an excerpt from the abstract:
You were hired for your ability to sit and concentrate for long periods of time to solve problems, then placed in an environment where it’s utterly impossible to do that! Who decides that, despite overwhelming evidence that it’s bad for productivity and people hate it, that you must sit in a cubicle? The furniture police!
This keynote describes the frustrations of modern knowledge workers in their quest to actually get some work done, and solutions for how to guard yourself against all those distractions.
There’s a free registration needed to view the talk, but BugMeNot has some entries that’ll let you get past that if you have an aversion to it.