We just changed how commitments in your gallery are sorted and I’m really liking it. Before I had some hopeless-seeming commitments always sorted to the top and it was kind of demoralizing. Now I have one only slightly late one at the top [update: just dispatched it!], then some kinda-embarrassingly-overdue ones, then some that are due soon, then the hopelessly overdue ones. It’s a little weird and arguably magical but I think there’s a fundamental sense in which this is the optimal order to tackle these and that makes it all feel less daunting.
Here’s my gallery if you want to see what I mean: http://dreev.commits.to
Or to catch you up if you don’t know what I’m talking about, until yesterday promises sorted in the obvious order, with the most overdue things on top. But now… well, let me quote myself from “Sorting of Promises in the User’s Gallery” in the spec:
We refer to the page shown at alice.commits.to as Alice’s gallery because it shows the list of all her promises.
We sort them as follows. All incomplete promises sort to the top. Among incomplete promises we sort by urgency, to be defined momentarily. Among complete promises we sort by decreasing completion date. So you see the most urgent things first, and then completed promises, starting with the most recently completed.
The obvious way to sort by urgency is simply amount of time till the deadline. For overdue promises that’s a negative number so the most overdue promise would sort to the very top.
But just for fun, and maybe because it’s useful, we’ll use a more sophisticated definition of urgency. Namely, we’ll sort by least absolute distance to the nearest Schelling fence. If nothing is overdue then it’s the same as the obvious definition of urgency, since the due date will in fact be the nearest Schelling fence. But when some things are overdue, the most urgent is the one where you’re losing reliability the fastest or are about to start doing so. For example, if you’re already a few days late on something then you’re probably treating 1 week overdue as the new deadline. If you have something else that just passed or is about to pass the 24-hour overdue mark, that’s more urgent.