Friday, October 17, 2014

Begin with the end in mind...

... when it comes to organizing your digital photos. I refer to Stephen R. Covey's great book The 7 habits of highly effective people in which he discusses two dimensions of creation: first you imagine it, then you take action to make your vision become reality. It is the second habit and what he means is you should always keep in mind where you eventually want to go. Or more precisely you should start by finding that out. So if you are like most people and tons of photos enter you hard drive every year, begin with getting clear about when and how you will look at these pictures."Someday when I'm old" is not a good plan because I bet you won't want to hand sort billions of files at age 90. Be absolutely sure about what you intend. For me personally it is the hard edge version: I don't keep photos on my computer. If my children want to see them in the future they will certainly find some online or when they contact my friends. Even if they don't - when I trade off the effort necessary to select the best pictures against the pleasure of being able to reminisce about the past one day, it just does not seem to be worth it. It actually even gives me an unpleasant nostalgic feeling to look at old photographs. My favorite time is the present. But if you want to approach this Herculean task, get specific: How many pictures do you want to keep each year? I'd suggest one hundred so that you do not end up with more than 10 000 photographs at the end of your life. By now that's probably the number of files you already have. Do not wait to change the way you manage your data - your future self will thank you.

No comments:

Post a Comment