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It's a tough question to answer because context is so deeply personal to you.

I worked with a guy who'd have a context for every single person he was likely to be in touch with on a > semi regular basis. That's pretty tough to manage. Having 50+ contexts for people, plus situational contexts, seemed to add a lot of overhead to his workflow.

To me, context should be something fairly simple. It should describe the best situation for you to do something. Sure, you *could* make a stir-fry while sitting on the toilet, but that context is better suited to reading the paper.

Are contexts mutually exclusive? I don't know. I don't entirely buy the whole "physical requirement" thing. I guess it depends on what you're doing. The "phone" context is mutually exclusive to the "london underground" context for obvious reasons, and my "lunch" context should (for reasons of sanity and hygiene) be kept separate from my "office" context.

For what it's worth, I keep a simple vocab of contexts. They evolve all the time. Right now I travel a lot and spent a lot of time in different offices, studies, etc. In six months, it might be more stable so my contexts would need to change...

Home (chores mostly)
Study (mostly meaning libraries)
Office - Mac
Office - Phone
Shopping (becoming redundant now as I do more and more online)
Offline - Mac (I turn off my WiFi during my most productive periods)
Online - Mac (is taking over shopping contexts)
Tube (London underground, mostly reading, consuming content, etc)

I hope this rambling brain ejaculation has been at least halfway useful. :)