I read this article on the bus today, https://www.smithsonianmag.com/innovation/why-are-we-always-searching-for-quiet-place-180968840/, talking about the history of searching for a quiet place. It reminded me of The Quiet Report and how I wish any review site had a category for noise. I’ve discussed this topic before, during a weekend of silence. Generally, I’ve found my own productivity greatly enhanced when I can focus without distraction for a few hours. I can be just as productive on an airplane or train with singularity of focus and repetitive background noises. These aren’t exactly quiet places, but they do have many noises minimized or removed by their nature. I’ve found libraries around the world are great places to visit to avoid many of the distractions to one’s focus. They generally also have the benefit of being beautiful inside and arranged for productive work.
Overall, my brain can only handle so many distractions while trying to get work done, especially if that work involves a lot of thought experiments or pouring over details again and again until something stands out. If you spend some time thinking about it, you’ll probably find something similar. And it doesn’t always have to be someplace desolate, like the place where I took the header picture in Iceland a few years ago. Although, it was a quiet place with the occasional bird chatter.