CHAOS AND ORGANIZING

I absolutely needed new software if not for the tools — which aren’t very different than the ones I have from 10 years ago — but because I’ve been avoiding doing this forever. I knew it was going to be a massive job and my attitude has always been very simple. I don’t want to do it. The idea of figuring out where tens of thousands of photographs belong gives me a nervous twitch.

The version of Photoshop I’m using is more than 10 years old. Closer to twelve. In high tech years, that’s like being 108. Maybe older. I think this is my fourth PC and third Mac since I was given that version. When I got this disc, I was running whatever came before Windows 7. Does anyone remember what that was? I don’t.

During this time, I’ve gotten new cameras and Garry and I together take too many pictures. I don’t have the time to sort them, delete ones I’ll never use, and do the basic work I need to make them ready to post online. I don’t do anything fancy most of the time. Usually, I straighten horizons, brighten things that are a little dark, sharpen or denoise pictures that can benefit from it and sometimes I need to make the colors look more real. If I get to playing with software, I may do something interesting, but recently, I’m just happy if the picture is the right size and not blurry.

Thus I spent all yesterday trying to do the one thing I’ve avoided doing which is organizing photographs. This involved taking a full year — 2019 — off my computer. All of those pictures are already backed up and they were on my hard drive for convenience. My convenience was going to make my hard drive give up because out of a terabyte and a half, I had fewer than 100 MB available. I still have to remove a lot more stuff.

I knew I was looking at a mess. I merely underestimated how big a mess. It turns out there are not merely pictures we shot, but also those other “loose” photos that were part of one post or other. I don’t remember where these pictures showed up or when.

After spending hours doing computer house keeping, dumping old zip files — all of which are already backed up — I decided to move the remaining files into Light Room Classic which, it turns out, has not relationship to Photoshop. For some reason, I thought they would know about each other. Wrong again, sister.

I had just under 39,000 photographs in folders after that major cleaning effort. It wasn’t major enough. I knew I was going to have to deal with this sooner or later. I had long since decided later was better. What I really meant was never would be perfect and until yesterday, I stuck to that resolution.

My first decision was right. Never would have been plenty soon enough.

I think I have waded into the mire again and when I’ll emerge, I simply don’t know. This software assault might drive me to giving up photography and going back to reading books!



Categories: Anecdote, Apple, Computers, PC-format, Photography, Software, Technology

Tags: , , , , ,

13 replies

  1. Eventually …
    Eventually we have to upgrade. I figure by now (4 years) there must be enough improvements, refinements and changes that it would be justified. I just don’t want to spend the money.
    I could buy last years version I suppose? Should be cheaper.

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  2. I’ve been procrastinating about that job too. I lost the HDD I had backed many of my photos from the old computer onto when I moved. I have not seen it in nearly two years and fear that the box it was in may have inadvertently gone to the Op Shop. It should have been in my laptop bag. That’s where I put it when I had to leave home because of the bushfires and it was my intention to have it there whenever I moved too. I still have the original SD cards and should buy a new HDD to put them all on in some kind of order. I save by subject matter not date though. I had folders for dolls with sub folders by type and had done the same for holidays and other events. I have been putting off tackling it because of how long it will take and because I have not had the spare cash for the HDD’s unless I skip buying something like food. I already don’t buy clothing. It will have to happen though. I miss my archive.

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    • I didn’t have a choice either. I had my stuff on old spinning drives and they have a very high rate of failure. I’ve had MANY failures of those kinds of drives over the years, so I needed to get things onto something more reliable — and THAT cost money. It’s one of the reasons I’m so totally broke now.

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  3. OMG! 39 thousand photos? Wow!
    I’m impressed!
    And that is just for 2019?
    Again, I’m impressed.
    I do hope you can get them all sorted!
    but do tell me, where you have back all those photos up to?

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  4. Oh goodness gracious, Marilyn, do I ever hear you. I suggest you make sure your backups are all still ok. I have irretrievably lost some important photographs. I needed/wanted to print a specific photo from 2010. I knew the exact date it was taken. It wasn’t on my computer but others from that same session were. I checked all 4 external hard drives – same thing. I checked my 3 other laptops (I have 5), same thing. I thought it was “no big deal” because I have all of my original CF cards used in my Canon DSLR going back to 2006. I looked at every single card and every single card was missing images and all except two had folders that were entirely empty. Turns out a software bug was the culprit. So the missing photos are just plain gone. So be it. Life goes on. Lessons learned. It took more than 4 straight days to diagnose the root cause. I was unwise to take for granted that the external drives were a-ok. Good luck! Best, Babsje

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    • I wound up dumping a ton of stuff that was written in formats no longer supported anywhere. VERY old Windows files. Ancient PDF files. Some of this stuff has been transferred from computer to computer for more than 25 years.

      All my remaining pictures are jpegs. This is misleading because I lost every photographs taken prior to 2006 to the “I Love You” virus and a whole bunch more when GeoCities folded.

      I recently bit the bullet and got two new 2TB SSD drives for backups. My existing backup drives weren’t very old — a couple of years — but technology has changed. It was time to move everything to SSDs which are not only faster, but more reliable. Now I have all photos by year and month through 2012 on two SSD drives. I have to get more drives for the Mac, but I’m out of money.

      I can’t FIND anything. There are so MANY folders and each contain dozens of sub-folders of photographs I’ve never properly opened or done the most minimal processing like cropping and reducing sizes.

      I remember nothing because I remember everything, just in any order. It’s jumbled images of friends, long drives, boats, foliage, trips to Coney Island, visits to family — his and mine. There were a couple of years we visited Florida.

      I just spent this whole day turning on parts of my computer I turned off because I couldn’t delete a lot of things without reinstalling OneDrive. I hate cloud storage. Too many times, I’ve used it and then had the company close it down and wound up losing a lot of material because I had nowhere to store it.

      I have always been very wary of cloud storage. It’s the kind of thing where you look at it and think “What could possibly go wrong?” Answer? EVERYTHING. Storing stuff you care about on SOMEONE ELSE’S server? Is that a solution or just another calamity waiting to happen?

      This is going to take a while. I’m hoping today’s deleting gave me a bit more room. There’s nothing more I want to delete, but I may have to anyway.

      Sigh. Whine. I think I need a couple of Excedrin!

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s absolutely Herculean, Marilyn! My hats off to you for working your way through it. Do you know how to backup your WordPress site, in case it, too, goes the way of GeoCities? Down the road, of course.

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        • Yes, but the backup they use ONLY works on WordPress or one of it’s knock-offs so basically, when it’s gone, it’s gone. I can’t worry about that. I just can’t. Besides, I won’t live forever and I don’t think the world will still read my posts when I’m dead.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Oh don’t go selling yourself short. Some of your writings are ageless, take your Interview with Death. That alone has legs. Your family many want to walk through your memory lane down the road.

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