Scripting As Simplified Cognition (How to Catch A Flight)

Follow the three step path to enlightenment and productivity gained:

  1. Write scripts.
  2. Follow them manually.
  3. Refine and automate if preferable.

Below I “scripted” out catching my flight from Chicago’s O’hare Airport to Denver. Writing things down is often the first step to realizing what needs done. Ideally, you’d turn those written steps into a script run from a shell or terminal. Then you might automate that code by scheduling it with Windows Task Scheduler, Celery or Jenkins. But first, write it down in English.

script (verb)

2 : to provide carefully considered details for (such as a plan of action)


“Scripting” means having a plan that delivers a result, then executing each step of the plan. Some benefits of scripting:

  • now I can adapt this script for every flight I take.
  • the information is there if I need it while traveling. I have an easy way to check my progress and ensure that I make my flight.
  • if I need to deviate from the script, I can see if it fits with my end goal of making the flight.
  • Peace of mind, especially if you can automate your task.
  • Mind space. My mind is freed up to concentrate on other ideas.

To Automate or Not 

Now if only I could automate my flight somehow! Maybe with a surrogate robot? There’s probably a library for that on PyPI. 😉

Some tasks are ripe for automation. In this case, I don’t want to automate experiencing the beautiful mysticism of Colorado’s mountains! But maybe I could try to automate parts of the flight experience like the online check-in? 🤔

Free Up Space to Think

The brainpower saved allowed me to write this post because I know I have 30 minutes until I need to leave according to my script listed below. Write scripts and follow them. Then automate them if possible. In the terminal or in life.

Chicago to Denver Day of Flight Script
Check in online 24 hours before take-off. Screenshot boarding pass on phone.

9:00 AM Wake Up + Coffee

9:30 AM Eat large breakfast

10:30 AM essentials checkpoint: pack passport, wallet, keys, mask, toothpaste, deodorant & phone charger

11:30 AM Depart for airport by CTA train (Up to 15 minutes of waiting, then a 30 minute Blue Line ride.)

12:15 PM Arrive at CTA O’hare station. Walk to Terminal 3. (10 minutes)

90 Minutes To Departure point of no return from home to make ORD flight

12:25 PM Arrive at Terminal 3 Security Gate. (Estimated Wait: 15 minutes).

12:40 PM Clear Security. Start walking to gate. (10 minutes)

12:50 PM Arrive at gate and wait for boarding group to be called.

1 PM Flight Begins Boarding

1:30 PM Fly to Colorado

3:16 PM Arrive in Colorado