Ah, snow days... back when I was a kid these were days that were all about fun, drinking cocoa and playing in the snow. Now, as an adult they keep me home, but sadly not making snow angels. I try to use snow days as time to do those technology-related chores that I frequently put off and don't want to spend the weekend doing.
Here are a few pesky tech chores that I like to take care of when the weather is frightful:
- Backup! In addition to the regularly scheduled backups that I run with my triple redundant system, snow days are a good time to check on my various backup systems and ensure that everything is running smoothly and that everything that should be backed up still is. If you don't currently have a solid backup system, now would be a good time to figure this out — backups are so important!
- Photo organizing. Although using Aperture helps a lot with organizing my digital image libraries, I still find that I need to take the time to better organize files and archive libraries that I no longer need to access regularly. This helps backups go more smoothly, frees up space for new raw images I've shot, and helps me find exactly what I'm looking for with ease.
- Upload those smartphone photos. Related to photo organizing, this task means actually getting them off of your phone or camera. Thankfully Dropbox auto-upload has taken care of this for me, but if you don't have such a tool turned on, get cracking. No, you don't have to share your photos for the world to see, but getting them off of the local device and onto something more permanent is good... trust me, your phone will thank you.
- Hard drive maintenance. The list for how to keep your hard drive running ship shape depends largely on what kind of hard drive it is and what operating system you have, but with my Mac's SSD I like to use the built-in tools in Disk Utility to verify + repair permissions and verify + repair disk.
- Upgrade your OS. Now that your backups are performed, it would be a good time to take a look at upgrading the operating system on your computer... another fun task that typically gets put off.
- Lens cleaning. I love my dSLR, but one of the things I'm not as good at is taking the time to keep my lenses looking pristine. Snow days are a good time to work on this task.
- Untangle cables. I own many things that plug in and come with various cables, and with the hustle and bustle of daily life I sometimes let them get tangled as I move to hastily store them when visitors are coming over. Time to queue up that movie I've been meaning to watch on Netflix and untangle the mass of cables.
- Buy printer ink. One of the things I seem to run out of, despite getting warnings from my printer, is ink. Snow days are the perfect time to price shop online for ink and order so that you'll have it before you run out next time.
- Shred. While I don't find the process of using my shredder to be particularly onerous, for some reason it's one of those tasks that I let pile up all too often. Snow days = shredding days.
- Digitise old collections. Have some classic family films on VHS that are showing their age? If you have access to the technology needed to convert these, snow days are a good day to work on this task. If you don't have access to that tech, use the time to separate out which ones are worth keeping and archiving.
What tasks do you use snow days to get done?