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Staying highly organized is an art form

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by ShadeDream, Jul 1, 2013.

  1. ShadeDream

    ShadeDream Elite Member

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    Not sure if this is an issue but I've always felt the need to stay highly organized. Maybe it's because I'm very ambitious but not really sure about that. Up until now I've been a mess, slowly starting to organize myself and that includes everything.

    I'm currently working on my bookmarks and what can I say, I think I'm going to end up deleting most of them because I doubt I will be going through most of them any time soon, there's just too much. If I kept them organized from the very beginning it would be a different story but looking at some of them now I feel it's highly unlikely I will be going through them.

    Anyone else have organizational issues? It'll be a long night, I've been delaying this for the past few months and well I don't exactly want to just delete them, even though that would be the easy solution.


    Oh and if you feel like you've wasted your time by opening this thread, here's a little something to cheer you up:

    [​IMG]
     
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  2. Goal Line Technology

    Goal Line Technology Senior Member

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    [h=2]Staying highly concentrated after looking at that ass is an art form :)[/h]
     
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  3. darkfury

    darkfury Regular Member

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    I got this folder on my desktop, its called "Stuff" .... when my desktop gets too full i drag everything into the this "Stuff" folder. Inside the Stuff folder is a Stuff folder, and guess whats inside that Stuff folder.

    It clogs the index up on my HDD, bogs down virus' and malware scans and takes up HDD space - Been meaning to do something about that damn folder for about 3 years. Even after formatting, it just seems to make its way back again :p
     
  4. contentweb

    contentweb Registered Member

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    fap fap fapp !!!!
     
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  5. ShadeDream

    ShadeDream Elite Member

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    Hahaha, yeah I've been doing that too.

    It started with a folder called "To be sorted", and ever since then I've created many more...

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Goal Line Technology

    Goal Line Technology Senior Member

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    yep, been there, done that, wore the t-shirt etc....
    but then I went out and bought a 2TB external hard drive and cleared the "stuff" to another folder on the the new HDD,
    yep, you guessed it... the folder is now called "Stuff to sort out" :)
     
  7. MachineLord

    MachineLord Supreme Member

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    Whoever invented yoga pants, deserves fucking medal!
     
  8. ShadeDream

    ShadeDream Elite Member

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    Lolwut? They're called "yoga pants"? Never heard of the term, I thought they were simply "leggings".
     
  9. dnouche

    dnouche Junior Member

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    I understand where you are coming from, and organization is great, but this sounds like procrastination to me.
     
  10. QuietZorg

    QuietZorg Regular Member

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    I've got some of those Stuff folders too.. I generally clean them out only when I upgrade the laptop.

    I have started using JIRA for project / issue tracking. It's great especially if you have online clients and need to outsource the work. So many features and just 10 dollars per month if you have less than 10 users. Well worth the money as keeping track of many projects is a headache without some organizing.

    Also SVN is good if you're tweaking sites. Just makes changes tracable. I recommend tortoiseSVN, very simple.

    For backup use sync toy...

    That's about the extent of my organizing. Although I do plan on automating more, I suppose that is related to organizing (using auto hot keys, perl scripts, VB or python where appropiate.)
     
  11. MachineLord

    MachineLord Supreme Member

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  12. flexnds

    flexnds Power Member

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    I have the same issues... I get organized, then I get all unorganized again I usually have to spend at least a few hours a week cleaning up work stations. Then I forget where I put sh*t because I have 3 main PC's I work from. Lol, I'll order hundreds of dollars in content, then forget about it for 2 months. Not good.

    I'm debating on setting up a VPN on my home network and just using my main PC as a NAS and mapping those drives through the VPN to my other two machines so I can use them remotely much easier.

    That doesn't even begin to take care of the amount of Google docs I have.

    One thing I've done and I'm glad I finally did, was start a personal blog. I plan on putting important bookmarks and other resources in there so I can access them anywhere. I realize you can sync chrome etc, but I don't want all that stuff ending up on my workstation at the office.

    Tips would be greatly appreciated on organizational habits.
     
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  13. ShadeDream

    ShadeDream Elite Member

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    For some reason I've never been keen on automatic backups...
     
  14. unclemike

    unclemike BANNED BANNED

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    Damn I thought I was the only one. I have a 4GB flash drive almost full of "Sort Pic, Sort file ect) folders.
    I do keep my bookmarks tidy. My advice is to go through every bookmark.

    If you don't you will want that amazing site you bookmarked and say "Oh fuck!" My dumb ass deleted it and now I will
    never be able to find it again. I have done that multiple times until I decided to start scrolling and opening the bookmarks in a new
    tab. Yes..yes it is hell.

    Your awesome man......got to see some eye candy.

    Cheers,
    Unclemike
     
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  15. QuietZorg

    QuietZorg Regular Member

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    Well I'm lazy, and I trust machines, once they don't go all matrix on my ass, feeding me the liquidized dead in my little pod. Have some faith man.

    I guess if it's just a matter of copy & pasting a few folders, manual isn't a whole lotta hassle. Once shit's being backed up that's all that matters at the end of the day.
     
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  16. ShadeDream

    ShadeDream Elite Member

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    That's something I've been putting off for months. Once I sort my stuff out, I'm going to have to start one too, I've actually registered a domain quite some time ago.

    Yeah, I'm doing this right now, but I'm also just removing a lot of bookmarks because at the end of the day I doubt I will ever have the time to go through a few thousand bookmarks to check everything out. I have to focus more on the now and if I need anything else in the future I will Google for it and bookmark it then.
     
  17. chapter2

    chapter2 Newbie

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    Few tips from my experience with this organization/productivity problem:
    - try some formalized productivity methodologies, eg. GTD (getting things done), ZTD (zen to done), Priacta TRO. Most of them will address the problem of information-data organization and will at least provide you with some interesting guiding principles you can borrow and adapt for your needs.

    - have a written list of everything you want to accomplish... all lifelong goals, short-term goals, dreams, wishes, everything. It will help you evaluate the new information and clutter you bring into your life. Whenever you come across a piece of information, book, thread, link, ask yourself ? what is the reason why you want to check it out? What do you expect to get from it? Will it bring you any closer to any of your major goals? Sometimes, it will only be a way to alleviate few minutes of boredom... and you know it... and you still click the link, and waste some time... and that's ok, but the important thing is to be aware of it. Be aware that you just decided to waste XX minutes of your life. Next step ? watch the patterns arise through your awareness, see how often you make decisions that do nothing to help you achieve your goals, but only appeal to your needs for instant-gratification. Just be aware of the passage of time, of the ticking clock, and the way you use that time.

    - related to the above paragraph, and in answer to your question about organizing bookmarks... here's how I do it.
    Instead of organizing bookmarks thematically (liked I used to do in the start, the way most people intuitively start doing), I organize bookmarks into 'goal folders'.

    Here's a small example hierarchy.

    Bookmarks Menu
    --|Goals
    ----|3. ...
    ----|4. ...
    ----|5. Learn Spanish (the number represents the goal priority, how important it is compared to other goals, in whatever vision of life you had in mind in the life-planning/goal-setting phase)
    ------|Daily (folder; sites that are basically tasks to be done on a daily basis, in allotted time... common subfolder in my goal trees)
    --------|I. Complete 2 Duolingo sessions (= link; short, custom, goal-oriented name aids in readability and overall long-term vision and productivity)
    --------|II. Watch an episode of Destinos (=link)
    ------|Sites in local language (folder; mass of links that agree with my learning method, available here for easy access in random time intervals when I need them)
    --------|news:lavozdegalicia.es
    --------|...
    ------|Resources (anything useful that would be referred to on daily basis, or valuable resource stored for later use... eg. here, I'd have a subfolder for academic/idiomatic/etymological dictionaries, folder for grammatical references... in "Be more healthy" tree, under "Exercise" subtree, I have BBcom references, nutrition tables, etc.)
    ----|6. Have lucid dreams
    ------| ...
    --------| ...
    etc.

    CBA with formatting, but you get the idea.

    Know your goals, know what it would take to achieve them, and use your web browser to organize only the internet resources that are to be used in achieving your goals (anything else would be impractical).

    If you don't have a list of goals, take a look at your existing, unorganized bookmarks, I'm sure you'll be able to make some deductions from all that data.

    This might seem to be needlessly time intensive at first sight, but viewed in the long-term perspective, it is obviously much needed in order to organize all these resources into somewhat coherent, predictable and prioritized structure, and in the long run, it will save you much time, effort and frustration.

    - keep a journal. There are countless benefits to be had from journaling (just ask Jim Rohn), but I'll focus on the one that pertains to this topic ? how did keeping a journal help me become more organized (and productive, and everything else). And the answer is... I used it as an extension of my limited mental workspace and, more importantly, a tool for self-exploration and critical self-inquiry. I'd feed it all my fears, worries, desires, plans, thoughts, ideas, actions. I'd put my self on an observation table, and like a scientist with pen and note pad in hand, describe and analyze everything I see. Where am I right now? Why? Where I should be? (Why?) What am I doing (and why)? What I should be doing? What have I done today? Why? Why not? What are my goals, was I aware of them all the time, did I work towards them, in cluster, on an individual basis, how did I do, what got me sidetracked, etc...

    I'd write about anything that crosses my mind. At least I did when I started. Now I don't need that level of detail (I identified my weak points and I'm more conscious about them), but in the start, it's an useful practice to get better insight into your thoughts, habits, and your self in general.

    Anyway, once I'm done with all the observations and analyses, or better -- once I have a week's worth of journal entries done in this style, I have an invaluable depiction of my personality traits, strengths, weaknesses, reasons why I fail or succeed at certain things, I get an accurate, detailed and intimate level of insight into my whole life that no psychologist could ever dream of getting, regardless of methods and competence.

    This is also how I thought of that bookmark organization method outlined above, one time when I caught myself procrastinating with tons of tabs open in firefox. I opened my journal in TreeDBNotes, and started thinking about how I got to open all that crap, how I could logically group them, and what I was trying to achieve with each group / link stream. That's when I realized how every signal I react to and follow (signal being a link here) actually resonates with some of my desires (often even on Maslow level), and how my browsing could be streamlined and segmented for better productivity.

    - also, one useful software: Voidtools Everything. It indexes all files on your HDD, and you can just call it with a hotkey, start typing, and you'll have your file read in a second. Eg. CTRL+ALT+S, amazon .pdf, and in 2 seconds, I have a list of ALL .pdf files on all of my hard disks that have amazon in their name. I use it more as a faster way to find and launch files, it shouldn't be a substitute for a proper file/folder/data organization system.

    I could write much more about all of this, but it's already becoming messy with my unstructured way of writing, so I'll just end it here. Hopefully some of this made sense, and wasn't encoded with too stronk Engrish.

    Keywords: Productivity methodology, GTD, ZTD, Pomodoro, dreams-goals-projects-tasks, logical-physical-virtual organization, (self)awareness, self-inquiry, common patterns, ruts, ticking clock, goal folders, journal, TheJournal, TreeDBNotes, TiddlyWiki, Voidtools.
     
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  18. ShadeDream

    ShadeDream Elite Member

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    @chapter2

    That's a pretty awesome post. I've actually been planning to create a list of things I want to accomplish including short/long term and lifelong goals. It's just that I've been putting it off for too long now and hence the thread. At the end of the day you've got to start somewhere and if not now then when?

    The thing with me is that although some of the information I come across on the web may not be related to my goals, it's hard for me to just ditch things because I've actually got a very wide range of interests. Anything interesting will pretty much grab my attention and at the end of the day, although you may have clear goals, it is not always clear how you shall achieve them and you never know when something may become useful to you.

    In regards to awereness, I'm actually always aware of my thooughts / actions (well most of the time). I know what I'm doing and I know I waste a lot of time but at the same time I still do it, I guess like dnouche mentioned that would be procrastination. Then again not always. I like the process of observation and analysis you have described and sometimes I do something like that, though I tend to keep it mental as writing it down makes me loose track and my mind wanders.

    When it comes to bookmarks, back in the days when I've had them organized I actually did what you're doing now, I've had a bit of a mix between thematical and more goal oriented, etc folders.

    Self reflection and self feedback is very important, that's for sure.
     
  19. swords12

    swords12 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    I let my desktop before with disordered icons but after a hard time looking what I need I decided to sort my stuff according their uses now. Organized computer stuff is also a reflection of oneself.
     
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  20. jb1978

    jb1978 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Check this out.

    This is using Evernote to boost your personal and work productivity. I tried it but evernote interface is just not for me. Maybe i will get back to it in the future. As for now, I'm using treepad to organise my personal and work flow.