Quick Report: Wasting Time On Software

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I am not a happy person right now. This week I went to install some of my art programs in the “artputer” and none of it wanted to run, even if I got it to run on the desktop. I got security messages or “check with the publisher for a newer version” messages. I basically wasted this week trying to get it to run. At some point I just stopped altogether. I need a new version of my photo software if I want it to run on the artputer even though it runs fine on my regular computer. I don’t get it!

It’s the waste of time that could have been put to other projects that ticks me off more. Yes, I wanted to do all the art stuff on the laptop in my art corner and the heavy lifting on the desktop but I have to spend money on a new version I don’t feel I need in order to do so. However, I could have been cleaning something else, doing something else that would actually be effective. Instead I wasted it on Windows’ inability to be backwards compatible and I hate wasting time on stuff, made worse by how much time I’ve lost this year thanks to getting sick.

Like I said, I’m not happy.

Quick Report: Gathering Software

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Not much to report this week. With all the sick leave I’ve had to take I’ve been going through a series of doctor-prescribed tests to figure out what’s going on. Friday I had to get a colonoscopy, and thanks to a doctor calling out they were really busy. I didn’t get to eat or drink anything until afterwards, and that turned out to be most of the day. With the anesthesia I ended up taking a nap when I got home because the best way to overcome a fake nap is with a real one. Point is Saturday I needed to rest.

I did however take some time to go over my software and gather together all the art programs, clip art, fonts, and the like that I plan to put onto the “artputer”, making it my go-to machine in my art corner for doing digital artwork. Hopefully next week (possibly over the next week but I’ll still hoping for an open appointment to get my first Covid shot and I need to make an appointment to see my regular doctor for a check-up among other chores) I’ll be able to start installing it and making this a proper digital art-making machine.

The sooner this is done the sooner I get back to proper clutter maintenance and the reports and reviews y’all come here for.

Quick Report: Learning My Smartphone

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With my back still a bit tender my ability to do any heavy cleaning is suspect. There’s this one small spot in the small of my back, which is the spot it usually starts, still being restrictive. So this week I decided what I really need to do is go through my new smart phone and learn all the apps. This is something I’ve not really done in the past but long since should have done on my old phone. I even added an app or two to improve function but I don’t want to bother putting too much on. However it is still clutter clearing as any app I couldn’t use or wasn’t interested in was taken off…if it could. I also cleaned out a bit of my library and wishlist for apps I’ll never want to use.

Having apps that can’t be removed is sort of a pet peeve of mine when it comes to smartphones. I didn’t have this problem on the tablet, which has the same storage issue as my old phone, where I can’t even update the darn thing without a fight anymore. (My computer-savvy friend says that Android likes to take up a lot of space, and I’ve noticed that when I install a new update it doesn’t delete anything from the old one, which takes up even more space.) The big issue though is that smartphones have these apps you can’t get rid of even if it doesn’t affect the working of the phone. I don’t need the Facebook app on there because I’m rarely online when I’m out. (I don’t have a data plan and only use public WiFi when necessary. I don’t even have the phone on when I’m home most of the time.) I certainly don’t need Uber because I have a car and it’s already rare when I use it these days. And yet I can’t pull them off of the old phone. Heck, Google just canceled Google Play Music in favor of their YouTube Music app (I would have done it the other way around but what do I know?) I can’t use the app anymore except when downgraded to listen to the old radio shows and music I have on the SD card but for some reason it’s an app you can’t pull off, and yet Google Play Games is, despite being still active and one I probably use more. It just eats up space and it’s used for the function of the phone or basic operations. Why, Google? What makes you think this is a good idea? I just disable them so they won’t update again but it’s still clutter.

So get to know your apps and see which ones you’ll actually use. It takes up space and if you can remove it, do so. If you can’t, uninstall all the updates and disable it so it won’t waste even more space. It’s an odd sort of clutter project and I don’t know if iPhone and Windows Phone users have to suffer through this nonsense but it’s a good idea. Also, get a micro SD card and transfer all your pictures, videos, audio files, and contacts to that. If you use a media app or navigational map program that lets you download, make sure it’s set to that micro SD card. You’d be surprised how quickly space on your phone or tablet gets eaten up.

Quick Report: Email & Hiatus

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This week I did some more email catching up. I was hoping to finish the whole year’s worth of emails. Yes, my backlog is that bad. I only made it to April, as if to further emphasize the point. I think I want to focus my Saturdays on getting caught up on this project, but it’s kind of boring to write “I did more emails” week after week so I think I’m going to pull away from new reports until this is done, or at least until I catch up to 2019. On both my work email and my personal one, the latter of which I didn’t even get to. If I take time to do other projects, like if I get the cardboard I need to redo the art supply drawer, or some other project that needs to be done, I’ll report on it. Otherwise there won’t be new updates until the clear 2019 emails goal at least is reached.

If you’re curious what else I’m up to in the meantime, check out my other website, where I discuss the art of storytelling via various methods. Some reviews I’ve done here came from there and vice versa, and of course the book report I do comes after the Chapter By Chapter weekly reviews. Otherwise I hope to be back here soon when I have projects to report on but these inboxes aren’t going to clean themselves and I’ll be using the methods discussed in previous email-clearing articles. Stay safe and keep decluttering!

More E-Mail Decluttering

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It was too hot up here in the attic HQ to do any work, and I’m going to need stronger cardboard to redo the mini-drawer organizers anyway. (I may have to design them before putting them in, which should be a good project. The set in there now is the result of being designed as I went rather than really planning anything out.) So this week I went through my e-mails.

My e-mail box gets cluttered up a lot. Not counting the year I was away from my computer most of the time due to being in the hospital the various projects I work on doesn’t always leave me time to really go through them. I do have some tips for how to make it easier and I even manage to take some of my own advice on this. Sadly, not enough or this wouldn’t be a recurring topic on this site, now would it? 😉

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Quick Report: Virtual Clutter Meets Virtual Shutdown

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I wasn’t going to go two weeks without a report but once again my plans got screwed up. The goal this week was to get caught up on all the articles in my RSS feed. On Friday I actually got to read a few and I thought on Saturday I could finish up. There was also an online convention I was hoping to watch during the day. However on Saturday something was messing with the computer and I had to restart it a few times because everything wanted to update or scan at the same time. I got through the rest of the day after deciding the convention was not in line with the time I had left and other things to do. I got a few more articles read but not all of them.

Then comes Sunday. The computer is now stuck in some kind of diagnostic hell and won’t properly start. I’m hoping I can get going without losing all the stuff I don’t have backed up. Either way I know what my next project is going to be. I need to reorganize my back-up drive and back-up my important files before this happens again. In the meantime I have to work from the XP laptop, which is going to be a problem since files I need for the other site are on the malfunctioning computer so I don’t know what’s going to happen this week. I thought the computer issues were behind me.

The Software Organizing Project part 2

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This is turning out to be a more involved project that anticipated and at this point I’m only doing it to myself. I think it’s because unlike the comic organizing mega-project I can go through and get this finished without dedicating my life to it and move on to something new. It may also be one of those projects that’s a long time coming. Even doing this a few pieces of software are still missing, although I did find a few productivity and art programs. Still don’t know what happened to Sonic Heroes.

If you recall from last week I was trying to figure out how to store my software. I just realized as I was writing this sentence that I have more than two categories. I have the games, the drivers, the art software, the productivity software, and a few “interactive cybercomics”, which means I have to figure out what to do with all of that. Right now though I’m focusing on the games. Here’s my current progress.

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Quick Report: Drives And Media Libraries

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I was going to dust in the bathroom today but for some reason I was really tired all day. But I did get some stuff done. My dad recently purchased one of those external floppy drives because we both have floppy disks from the days when those mattered, and there are still some fun games on them. Not all of them will work in his Windows 8 computer but they’ll work on my XP laptop and maybe even his 7 laptop if we can get it running again. So I had to see if that was working. Seems to be okay.

I spent the rest of the day finally getting back to my other site’s media library, filling in the descriptions to better find an image I might need. It’s a nice trip down memory lane as my 10th anniversary running that site is this month. I got through all of 2010’s pictures, and if that took most of the day you can imagine how many images I had to go through, taking time away to avoid eye strain of course. Next time I have to work on 2011. It’s not much but at least I did something today.

Quick Report: Updating My Media Library part 2

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Recently in my virtual clutter projects I talked about organizing the media library of this website, so I could more easily find a photo that would work in a current article that I used in a past one. Well, I run another website, the one I occasionally borrow media reviews from. This one usually updates every day, barring life issues, instead of weekly and has been running for a lot longer. So there are a lot more images on that site to go over. This collection of files on the site is referred to as a media library, so don’t confuse it with me doing things with my videos or comics or something. Since this week included buttoning up and disconnected my air conditioners as the weather in Connecticut gets colder I decided this would be an easy project.

“Easy” does not mean quick. In the time I had, with a few extra hours taken from the day before, I only managed to get up to 2010. That includes the first two months of 2008 the site was running and all of 2009. This being 2018 and not counting the large amount of time off took in 2016 or when I had a service called Zemanta (later named Sovrn) that I could use for images (the service no longer exists and I don’t know where to find a replacement service for images and external site links connected to a topic, which also hurts this site), there is still a whole lot of work. Comic reviews, images used in articles, logos…it all has to be gone through. As I get closer to modern-day there will be more images with searchable descriptions I can use to find what I want (I’ve gotten better at that recently) but I have to put those descriptions on years worth of pictures.

If I was able to do two months a day I could do a year a week, but considering I failed to do something similar with the emails I will be happily surprised if I pull that off. I found images I didn’t remember I had and images I knew I had but would never come up because they weren’t titled or described right. With this problem solved things will run smoother, as hopefully they will with the site you’re currently reading which I also organized. I’ve still got time to go through the physical clutter before I decorate for Christmas, a time where other projects will dominate. I may return to the virtual clutter then when I don’t have other projects to do first. But the image organizing has to be done. It’s one of those projects I put off for too long. Add to the list I guess. This one is more “professional” than other clutter projects but it’s still clutter and fighting clutter is what this site is about. So onward I press.

Quick Report: Updating My Media Library

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One problem I’ve had with doing article is finding the right image from my media library. I don’t always have to upload a new image every time, when the old images I have can work to showcase what a project was, especially a quick project like this one. However, there are a number of times when I enter something to search my media library and even though I’m sure I have it I can’t find it. When I just need an old picture to make a point it’s not to be found, although sometimes I can dig into my library and find it. Nowadays I’m pretty good at naming photos for tracking down later but in the old days especially I didn’t really think about it. So this week I went through my old pictures in my media library and updated the descriptions and in a few cases the title for better exploring. This may also solve the problem of the same handful of images coming up for a topic when I know I have more. This is something I was going to while taking time off from my other site (which also needs this project done, but more so because there are more images) but then my computer went down the same time as the laptop I use for my art corner which could in a pinch act as a back-up for making content. So I had nothing to work with. Now the images here at The Clutter Reports should be easier to find. I know this doesn’t affect you much but it will make things easier for me, which is the whole point of this project.

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