It’s summertime, my kids are back from camp and we’ve slogged through piles of dirty laundry, camp keepsakes, and emotions.

With a moment to breathe, now is an excellent time to do some virtual housekeeping too. For me that means wrestling all my various healthcare and spending accounts to the ground (thank you U.S. healthcare system), and remembering to back up my computer.

You might want to back up your computer too. It’s one of those things that doesn’t matter until it does.

I think most of us don’t back up our computers because there are too many ways to do it, that feels overwhelming, and in the absence of doing it just right we don’t bother. It’s true, you could use Dropbox or Crashplan or one of the 10 options PC Magazine just reviewed if that floats your boat. I suspect that one of these is an optimal solution.

I’ve never managed to get over the hump of wading through all of that. Instead, I simply buy an external hard drive (1TB options cost about $50) and manually drag my files over ever few months. It’s an imperfect system for lots of reasons, but it gets me 80% of the way there so that if I drop my computer I’ll be fine.

I was reminded yesterday on NPR radio hour that, in the words of self-proclaimed Ad Man Rory Sutherland, the interface is everything, that we need easy interfaces to do nearly anything.

So, figure out what “simple interface” means to you and take care of this today. Your future self thanks you.

One thought on “Housekeeping

  1. Good advice and this is one post that I’m actually qualified to comment on. I follow the S.D. route for back up and have several older 260/500G hard drives and a newer 1T drive. I joked with my young adults letting them know that the under $100 price today would have been appx. $187,000 when I was their age . . . but of course, all things are not equal so even thought it’s a fun analogy, it a far stretch from reality. Which brings me to the part about activating qualified to respond. Even though the backup is vital, the real savings is truly in your time and materials. On a personal level, it something to recognize, but for a small business it’s substantial. Prior to retiring, I sold Enterprise Software and built very simple, generic ROI analyses that, based on a few simple variables can prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that it pays big time (usually a 6 month payback) to store and backup AND manage all your content electronically and even better, in the cloud . . . if you can get over your security worries.

    Isn’t it great when we solve one issue and just happen to solve another one in the process.

    I’m happy to share the simplified ROI for anyone wanting it.

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