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Desktop modifications discussion

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clutter free is the way to be...

KISS (keep it simple stupid)...

cleanliness is next to godliness...

;)

I guess I'm not close to the &Deity

 

What's Wrong With A Messy Desk?

Clean or messy doesn't matter. Effective does.

By F. John Reh, About.com

 

The war on your desk

Every day more and more information is thrown at you. New mail, reports from various committees, invoices, proposals, and more all hit your desk several times a day. You are too busy to deal with it right away so it just begins to pile up. Your desktop begins to look like a war zone.

http://management.about.com/cs/yourself/a/...yDesk081202.htm

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im not sure this is the place to discuss organization schemes, but my school of thought is that desktop shortcuts are the least effective. the desktop is actually designed to be a workspace, not a program launcher, so you should treat it as such and use the other means for launching programs. i feel like most people who have 30 desktop shortcuts dont even use use 10 of them regularly and those 10 can usually be served a better way.

 

simple examples: CCleaner. why have a desktop shortcut when you can simply right click the recycle bin and run/open the cleaner. its a better method and you can use it anywhere the recycle bin appears. isnt it more logical that way anyway? why have my computer/my documents desktop shortcut when windows explorer from the quicklaunch can go right there (or to any directory for that matter since it starts with a file tree)? defraggler? just run a scheduled task to defrag overnight and never open it again. foxit reader: when does anyone ever open foxit reader alone? no. they click pdfs which open in foxit reader.

 

you can usually whittle most all of it away.

 

for the stuff you cant get rid of, use the most under utilized feature of every single xp system: the start menu. now, im not talking the programs menu which is a submenu of the start menu. im talking that immediate menu once you click start. take your shortcut and drag it onto the start button, or if you are in the program menu, right click > pin to start menu.

 

now you have access to all of your shortcuts in one click, from any screen on your computer no matter how many windows are open or maximized. you also have keyboard only access by pressing the windows and arrows keys. whats more you can do things like dragging a file from a maximized explorer window, to the start menu, to the program of your choice which you drop it on and then it will open in it (provided you dont want to right click > open with). you can make your start menu shortcuts large or small, and you can customize it a few different ways depending on your preference. btw, its a feature on xp that works lousy but the start menu populates itself with the items you use most.... its practically nudging you by saying "hey use me, this is what im designed for." so if you dont know you can simply customize that menu's default from 7 to 0 and then they never appear... leaving you full regin to populate the start menu with your own shortcuts.

 

as for the desktop, use the desktop for its purpose: a temporary work area. plus now that most all of your shortcuts are in better more effective places, you can put a big old picture up and can ooh and ahhh it without having your view be obstructed by tons of icons with text. i personally prefer black :)

 

trust me you'll never go back.

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im not sure this is the place to discuss organization schemes, but my school of thought is that desktop shortcuts are the least effective. the desktop is actually designed to be a workspace, not a program launcher, so you should treat it as such and use the other means for launching programs. i feel like most people who have 30 desktop shortcuts dont even use use 10 of them regularly and those 10 can usually be served a better way.

That works well in theory but most application's install routines want to place a shortcut on the Desktop and sometimes in Quicklaunch.

 

If you move them away from the Desktop then the next time the application is updated then shortcut is placed right back on the Desktop.

 

You could prevent the application from doing this but the application would have to be started from start then All Programs then move mouse pointer to the wanted application to get it to run.

 

There is a setting that removes unused Desktop shortcuts after 60 days that could be run:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/306542

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yea but... just because the thing installs a desktop shortcut doesnt mean its the best use. i honestly suspect the whole desktop shortcut thing is a some marketing convention. like: "what better way to make sure our product gets precedence and use as to put a big iconic symbol on the desktop of everyone's machine! instant universal advertising space!"

 

just drag/drop the shortcut to your start button and then delete it. its simply a better way to launch programs.

 

both the start menu and tray have been around since windows 95. but that 60 day desktop cleanup is a relatively recent creation to aid people to clean up all the crap, same as the xp feature to hide your system tray crap. you know its true ;)

 

 

i dunno, all im saying is that the computer/os is a tool, and has been designed with specific ways to help you interact with it. teams of usability and interaction designers as well as test groups designed and refined the start menu... maybe its worth a second look. rather than accept the conventions of what 3rd party software does to scream "look at me!" try to think about how windows was actually designed.

 

give it a try.

 

 

oneod6.png

oneod6.ca03d8b36f.jpg

 

twozy2.png

twozy2.4eb61449f1.jpg

 

not sure how vista works though, xp you can also do the classic start menu style. i find xp style better.

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true enough, but isnt this the lounge :o

 

one last point. think about the desktop like this: why is the recycle bin icon the only one you cant easily get rid of? if you only/primarily use your desktop to hold/launch shortcuts, why would you ever need an easy means to drag and drop them into the trash. doesnt make sense does it.

 

anyway, if you want, give it a try.

 

 

p.s. siorry about the huge thumbnails, i pasted the wrong code from imageshack. not used to it.

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The only thing I use to launch programs is Launchy. Using the keyboard in that manner is very fast even for launching files, bookmarks etc.

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I think we all have our desktops according to how we use our computer. I don't really mind the shortcuts, I hardly ever use the start button, and I don't mind icons by my clock as I use them there a lot.

 

Nice to read about other people's way of having their desktops though.

 

By the way I did try rocket dock for a while then I ended up having to restore a snapshot as one day rocket dock decided to corrupt things Not saying it's not a good piece of software, it just didn't like mine. :)

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By the way I did try rocket dock for a while then I ended up having to restore a snapshot as one day rocket dock decided to corrupt things Not saying it's not a good piece of software, it just didn't like mine. :)

 

First time I have herad of that happening.

 

I removed all icons/shortcuts from the desktop including the recycle bin. Also shut off the Quick Launch Bar and use Rocket Dock instead. I set it to autohide so it's not visible until I move the cursor to the bottom of the screen. I set the Windows Task Bar to auto hide as well.

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Out of the 32 desktop icons I have including the Windows defaults like My Computer, My Documents, I use them allot, most of them several times everyday!

 

I certainly wouldn't deem the My Computer icon unnecessary hence it's a quick access to all connected drives, and the ability to simply right click it and go into Properties to get into the System Properties without having to go the slow route through the Control Panel.

 

Not everyone's desktop layout choices would work for everyone, nor be efficient for everyone hence the reason we can change it to suit our individual needs - now imagine if we couldn't change it at all!

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Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

 

 

http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov:80/apod/ap080808.html

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