Recursive Automation

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I listen to a number of podcasts every day. When I wake up, I refresh my podcasts and listen as I start my day. In my pursuit to constantly reduce my manual activity for recurring activities, I looked to automate it.

I have an Android Phone so I chose the following “stack”:

  1. Tasker — $3.49
  2. AutoRemote — $3.49 (you can also use AutoApps — about $1.49 a month)
  3. Home Assistant — Free
  4. Podcast Addict — Free (with In-App Purchases)

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Photo by History in HD on Unsplash

When we vote for a President of the United States, the voters are presented with a series of policy positions, i.e., lower taxes or universal healthcare, for example, that they will implement. However, there is a reason that this position is called the Executive Branch. The President doesn’t pass laws or negotiate them. He doesn’t do the fine-tuning of broad policies to make them work; instead, he hires the people to do it and then manages him.

In the first volume of Barack Obama’s memoirs, A Promised Land, he talked less about his executive actions and more about the personalities…

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Photo by Lukas Blazek on Unsplash

In today’s Business Environment, there are two types of companies: those that understand their data and those in danger of going under. In 2020, 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are produced by humans every day¹. Also known as an Exabyte or 1 BILLION Terabytes.

Some examples of the data being generated includes:

  • Search Queries
  • Shopping Habits (both in-person and digital)
  • GPS Location and other IoT Sensors
  • Social Media Posts
  • Individual Website Interactions

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Photo by joshua herrera on Unsplash

6 Different Video Binges for your Holiday Week

For many of us, 2020 is the Christmas that we will be isolated from our family and friends. Here is a list of Holiday Inspired Playlists for you to stream to get you in the Christmas Spirit.

Comedies that embody the Christmas Spirit

Comedies that uplift with just a little bit of absurdity

“My Best Moment” — Scrubs (Season 4 Episode 12)

A Scrubs’s Episode where everyone is alive at the end is an excellent place to start our Christmas Journey.

“The One Where Rachel Quits” — Friends (Season 3 Episode 10)

Ross’s guilt forces a comical interaction, Monica spirals, Rachel is a bad waitress, and Joey has a part-time job. Like every other Friends Episode, but this one has Phoebe heartbroken about Christmas Trees dying.

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Photo by Lala Azizli on Unsplash

Analytics has never been more critical in today’s world. Uncertainty plagues the world, workforces are changing dramatically, and technology is changing rapidly. Business leaders are looking to Analytics Departments to provide the answers, but how should those answers be generated?

Malcolm Gladwell popularized the rule of thumb for 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert in his book Outliers: The Story of Success. In today’s business environment, 10,000 hours is no longer a realistic metric as consumer behavior and technology evolves too quickly. The yardstick that we should be using is 10,000 experiments.

In the same time that one person can be “an expert in the analytics discipline” (five years), Facebook will conduct approximately 500k+ experiments.

Recursive Automation

Recursively Enhancing your Home Automation

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A couple of weeks ago I created an automation to change the light in my living room for when I played video games.

Lights in my apartment dimmed, ambient lights came up around the television, with only a push of a button!

When I was finished playing, I pushed the button again, and depending on the time of day, my lights returned to their normal status. Alexa also thanked me for playing.

But there were some small nagging issues:

  • My partner was accidentally hitting the button and changing the lights in the middle of the day.
  • I was losing track…

Automate your Pomodoro Process Today with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, or Home Assistant.

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Photo by Alex Ghizila on Unsplash

Working from home was supposed to be a short term event. Since that ship has sailed, we need to find a way to focus at home. Focusing at home can be hard, where there are housemates, TVs, and Video Games. To keep me on task, I follow a four-step process, to make sure that I remain on task:

  1. List my goals and activities at the beginning of the week (I use a Trello Board or some other Kanban Board)
  2. Break down those goals and activities into small manageable tasks. I then transcribe those tasks and track them in Todoist.
  3. Schedule…

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Lemons Photo by arianka ibarra on Unsplash

Taking the lemons of App Commercialization and turning it into Product Design Lemonade

Recently you might have heard about IFTTT changing their pricing plan. The pricing plan changed from free to $9.99 a month.

To put that in perspective, you could purchase the following Home Automation Options instead:

  1. A Google Home Hub ($90)
  2. 2 Amazon Echo Dots ($49 apiece)
  3. A CanaKit Raspberry Pi 4 8GB Basic Starter Kit with Fan (8GB RAM) ($100) and install Home Assistant for free

Recursive Automation

Create Goals, Activities, and Tasks like professionals to help plan your automated life

Artificial Intelligence conjures up an image for every single one of us. For me, its JARVIS of Marvel fame. The opening scene from The Avengers is what I want my automated life to be like. As Iron Man flies across the screen you see him land on top of the Avenger’s Tower and JARVIS tells him that Colson is at the door. As he progresses through his penthouse, his suit is removed without him doing a thing. Tony’s security system, work station, and living space is augmented by an interactive voice assistant. …

Commercial solutions like Amazon’s Alexa or Google Home are great for run of the mill Digital Assistants. But what happens when you want to make your Digital Assistant work for you? This is what the Recursive Automation Blog is about, how to personalize your home automations so that you can make the most of technology in your day to day life.

My name is Andrew Crider and during the day I am a Business Intelligence Consultant. I’ve been a consultant for ten years now and my job can boil down to increasing ROI of data and information. The two easiest…

Andrew Crider

Head of Digital Transformation at Provoke Solutions ( Blogger at

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