Mental Organization

One of the boons of Web 2.0 technologies, like tagging, folksonomies, and social bookmarking, is that it gives a mental pack rat like me an immense feeling of relief and empowerment.  I used to try and clip articles form newspapers and journals I thought were important.  Back in the days before the internets, I mean.  WIth browsers and bookmarks, I found myself saving bookmarks  willy-nilly.  And e-mails.  The problems was that using a file architecture to manage all these handles (a small handle to grab to access more in-depth knowledge) became itself a time suck and a mental burden.

Searchability is key for me.  That is one thing i learned from Gmail.  It wsa liberating to simply abandon the compulsion to keep and organize old emails.  By letting go and adopting a problem-solving mentality, I realized I could rely on my own mind to offer key words to search for relevant emails as I needed to find them.

Now delicious (and digg to a lesser extent) enable the same shift from organizing for organization’s sake to tagging and dropping (tag it and drop it till you need it).  I can organize myself and my time instead of organizing my files, bookmarks, handles, etc.

This summer I want to keep streamlining.  I still need and use paper copies of important articles.  Just as I look through my delicious bookmarks or blog for ideas,  I want to go to a file folder and review the articles there.

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Filed under Research, writing

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