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Assessing Your Computing Habits

January 25, 2022 — Jim Neumann
Desk with computer, hands writing notes.

Another New Year’s has passed us by. Let’s stop for a moment and consider the what we’re doing, as well as the whys. Perhaps now is a good time to examine your habits and databases in DEVONthink and DEVONthink To Go. Here are some things to think about…

  • Are you creating huge databases but only really using and accessing a small fraction of the data? Consider using smaller, more focused databases.
  • Are you indiscriminately dumping data into your databases? As we’ve blogged about before, this habit is less effective than being more judicious in what you put into your databases.
  • Similarly, how many databases are you actively using, not just keeping open? Open databases require device resources. In DEVONthink, close unused databases more often. You can quickly open them again when needed.
  • Are you carrying excess data and databases in DEVONthink To Go that you don’t really need to carry around? Examine your mobile document needs and consider carrying less. With the smaller, more focused databases we suggested earlier, this is even easier to accomplish.
  • Are you heavily tagging documents but not really using the tags for smart groups, smart rules, or searches? Reconsider applying tags without real purpose.
  • Are you ending up with redundant tags, differing in case unintentionally, or having tags with basically the same meaning, e.g., rock and stone? Disable Case Insensitive Tagging in File > Database Properties for a given database and the originally entered case of the tag will be preserved.
  • Are you creating deeply nested group structures but having difficulty locating files when having to navigate into the depths of those groups? A more shallow but still logically segregated structure could be a better option.
  • Are you giving yourself some time to browse the manual or explore some features you may have overlooked? Busy lives may make this a little “easier said than done” but you just may find the one little thing that improves your experience. This may be as simple as trying out color labels or creating your own smart rule to automate a process.

While this is certainly not an exhaustive dive into what can be considered, they are topics we do find people more commonly struggle with or are stumbled by. We hope you all take a moment here and there to think on some of these things and hopefully have an even better year, in general and with our apps!

Image courtesy of @ThoughtCatalog.