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Keep the Memories; Lose the Stuff

| January 23, 2021
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When I was a kid, I saw George Carlin do a stand-up bit on “stuff”.  He went on and on in his manner about all the stuff adults accrue over time.  I remember laughing and thinking it amusing.  If you want to listen, this is the cleanest version I could fine:  This past week my phone told me it isn’t backing up because I need more space.  In the words of Carlin, I now have too much stuff on my phone.  Looking back some 30-odd years later, George’s bit isn’t so funny any longer. 

On Wednesday I was listening to “Podcast Gumbo” (I wrote about this podcast last May).  The featured story was a piece from NPR discussing “7 Steps to get your Photos Organized”.  Talk about Big Tech watching me, now I have Paul Kondo (the creator of the podcast) apparently spying on me too! 

Also, this week, I received a very thoughtful message about a program on Public TV called “Legacy List with Matt Paxton”.  The series helps people downsize and declutter.  Here is that link:

Ok, I go the message: it’s time to declutter!  Now let’s start with my phone.

Looking at my phone’s photo album I have 3,177 pictures, 648 videos, and 109 selfies.  Wait – 109 selfies??? How does that even happen?  Upon further investigation of my photos, videos, and selfies I have learned that, evidently, my dogs take A LOT of pictures.  I’ve also learned that my daughters can make some very strange facial expressions when left alone with my phone.

So how can I begin to get control over my phone again, besides changing my passcode for the 14th time? 

Here are the “7 steps to get your photos organized” summarized:

  1. Commit to starting.  This could be a daunting task, but just get started.  Begin with gathering all of your devices: phones, computers, external drives, and flash drives. 
  2. Whittle down the rubbish.  Begin by removing blatantly “trash” pictures: the blurry pictures of the ceiling or floor would be a good place to start. 
  3. Create, and keep, a regular photo maintenance routine. 
  4. Do the tedious of work of tagging.  Creating a well thought out approach will help find photos you want later.
  5. Use machine learning (AI) and search functions.  There are programs that will help you remove duplicates: photo sweep; photos duplicate cleaner for Macs; and duplicate cleaner for PCs.  If you need serious help, you can always hire someone to organize your photos.  The Photo Managers group is a professional group whose members can handle big projects or vintage photos.
  6. Back up – back up – back up!  Follow the “3-2-1 back up standard”.  Keep 3 copies-- on 2 devices and 1 off site (the Cloud is off-site).
  7. Share your photos!  Why organize and keep them if you don’t share them with others?

Here is the link to the podcast: Scroll and look for the heading “Clean up the Cheese”. 

If my thoughts for this weekend have hit home with you, I wish you luck.  As for me, I think I’ll grab another cup of coffee and see how many selfies of Luna and Potter I can delete before my cup is empty… and I should change my passcode before my daughters grab my phone again.

Please remember that we are “here” and available for you as well.  If you have any questions or concerns, financial or otherwise, please do not hesitate to call or email.  If you have friends, family, or neighbors you feel would benefit from a conversation with me, I’m more than happy to have a call or jump on a Zoom meeting with them. 

As always, I hope that you are doing well, keeping safe & staying healthy! 

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