What science says about achieving the flow state

The Stack Overflow Podcast

We feel our best and do our best work when we can completely focus on what we’re doing and apply our full abilities to a task. That feeling is called the flow state, and it requires both a task worthy of your skills and the focus to apply them well. For software developers, accessing the flow state can be the difference between quality software and buggy code. On this sponsored episode of the podcast, we chat with Marcel Twohig, Head of Design for the MX Series at Logitech, and Thomas Fritz, Associate Professor of Human Aspects of Software Engineering at the University of Zurich. This episode is the second in our four- part series presented by Logitech. We cover the research that Professor Fritz has done on flow states, the design work that Marcel and team have done to incorporate that research, and the tools that you can use to maximize your daily flow.

Show notes

If you’re interested in diving deeper into Professor Fritz’s research on developer flow states, check out his list of publications.

Flow states can be affected by things as simple as the right lighting, so Logitech created keyboards that automatically adjust their keyboard backlighting.

Lights can be used to indicate your interruptibility.; Prof. Fritz did some research on FlowLight, which indicates your willingness to be interrupted with a simple red light/green light protocol. These days, you can use your Slack status to the same effect.

If you’re looking for apps to improve your daily flow, Cassidy recommends Centered.

Audio Player