Drawing hands feels as difficult as drawing faces in that you must fight a stronger part of the perceptual brain to succeed. This also means that the pay off can be all the more impressive.

How to organize your Computer

Organizing a computer can be a difficult task.  Surely you want to have a folder structure that will keep things organized, but how should that folder structure be divided up?

After many years of experimentation, I think I have come up with a system that keeps everything manageable over a long period of time.

The first thing is to keep different parts of your life separate.

In my case I have my projects, my photos, my writing, and my music.  This division of stuff has been fairly well established by the major operating systems, as they usually come prepacked for us with those folders.

Now here is my special recipe.

Inside of those folders make folders that demarcate years.  So you have something like this:

  • Projects
    • Pre-2008
    • 2009
    • 2010
    • 2011
And here is the very special sauce.  Inside of those year folders put project, or album folders that are prefixed with a 2 or 3 digit padded number, depending on how many projects or albums you expect in the year.

So you will end up with something like this

  • Projects/
    • Pre-2008/
      • 01TerriblePoetry/
      • 02FantasticPeotry/
      • 03TestingTypeWriterReviews
      • 04EnamellingPlates/
      • 05RemakeOfMouseCartoon/
    • 2009/
      • 01PizzaMaking/
      • 02Skydiving/
      • 03Roadtrip/
      • 04MotorCycleDesigns/
      • 05HighQualityLinensAcquisition
    • 2010/
      • 01MoreTeleportationDesigns/
      • 02TrashUnCompactor/
      • 03TrashReCompactor/
      • 04TrashUnCompactorFireSupressionSystem/
      • 05TrashUnCompactorFireSupressionSystemFireSuspressionSystem/
    • 2011/
      • 01TaiChi/
      • 02Teleporter/
      • 03HulaHoopExperiments/
      • 04TelescopeFilm/
      • 05HighVelocityCooking/
      • 06RembrantReproduction/
      • 07MagnificiantMagicAct/
And then whatever folder structure you need can go into each project folder.  In general, I would keep each project portable within the project file, to keep it as portable as possible, so that if you need to take it with you to another computer, you don't need to worry about it.

The reason that I keep my folders padded with numbers is that it ensures that the chronology of my work remains static, independent of me moving all of my files to a new hard drive or operating system.

I suppose that if I had way more projects going at a time, months could be implemented into this scheme, but I find that highly undesirable because most projects do overlap many months, but usually do not overlap more than 2 years.

Now honestly, only a small portion of my computer is actually so well organized.  I should probably do something about that.


The Photos I Took From Europe

When I am tourist, I try to take the pictures that the other tourists aren't taking.  Usually that means my attention is drawn away from the quintessential image of the sight that I am seeing, towards little unusual nugget of interest.

So at the end of the trip my photos do a rather poor job of telling a story about the vacation.  And in fact, most vacations lack a particularly intriguing story, being composed mostly of: airplane, train, bus, walk, hostel, eat, walk, hostel, eat, sight, walk, eat, bus, hostel, walk, bus, sight, museum, eat, eat, walk, shop, eat, hostel, walk, sight, hostel, bus, airplane.  The trip is literally thousands of small event which occur in foreign lands making them particularly interesting to experience first hand, but not compelling to hear about in series.

So here you will not find a set of photos that tell a cohesive story of the trip, but the photos, along with text which I hope explains why I took them.

The Eiffel tower is striking in person, in a way that is difficult to experience through low resolution photography due to the fractal nature of it's construction.  It's a lattice of beams which only seem to be constructed of a smaller lattices of beams.  It feels like there is no end to the detail.

For myself, half to fun of visiting another country is seeing their infrastructure.  They way they draw signs, construct side walks, hold up their electrical wires, fix there streets: these are things that vary between countries.  In a global market, so much of our merchandise is uniform across the globe, actually being able to see and think about these physical differences is compelling.

In one of my strokes of good travel luck, a contemporary prepare piano pianist that I particularly like was playing in Amsterdam while I was there: Hauschka.

Actually seeing the repaired damage of the war and all the different ways it affected Berlin, finally put the historical knowledge that I have into my personal cartographic conception of the world. Physically being in places made history feel like it took happened in the world I inhabit and not in a story that I had been told.

Right under this parking lot rest the bunker in which Hitler killed himself.

This plastic tie is all the memorial that can be found to Hitler, the remnants of a Neo-Nazi sign that had been put up and removed. 

I tried to get photos of paints I liked in ways that let me see what you can usually only see in person.

The toys that I saw at a toy museum in Munich were by far the most interesting artifacts that I saw on the whole trip.  They have to much peculiar life to them, and they all suggested wonderful backstories to their 

Little wooden cattle where scultped on a lathe and sliced off.

Neuschwanstein Castle is intriguing as it looks like a castle, but is actually a fairly modern building and serves as a remarkable precedent to the idea of a theme park such as Disney Land.

This is a map of the world.  If you look carefully on the right hand side, you can see the Mediterranean upside down.  It's amazing to see what humanity used to know about the world.

There are even more pictures available in the full album 

The trip itinerary was as follows:

Paris - Bruges - Amsterdam - Berlin - Prague - Vienna - Munich - Venice

All images are show chronologically, hopefully their location can be sorted out.