A couple of days ago, I took to this blog to complain about Windows 10 and how I lost a lot of documents because of it. Well, I still lost much of the work I did over the past 2+ years after resetting my operating system, but the good news is that I recovered most of my art projects and images from when I migrated from my old computer to this current one.
How Was I Able to Recover My Files?
As it turns out, I never threw away my old computer. I just did not use it since migrating from it. So yesterday, I went back to it and it still worked! That computer runs on Windows 7. The laptop still flashed the message about not having a legitimate copy of the OS the machine was slow, and it got hot pretty quick, but it was still functional and it allowed me to copy all my documents, music, pictures, and videos to an external hard drive.
It took me a few hours to copy all of those files due to the slowness of my old computer, but I copied everything. Today, instead of just transferring files to my current laptop, I decided to just copy and paste so that I will have another copy of my archive.
What Did I Recover?
There are probably too many things to name, but among the files, I recovered the following:
- All the school projects that I originally saved to my old computer. This includes images and projects I create in various Adobe Creative Suite programs.
- All the files I saved from my internship. That includes video and audio files. I plan on discussing that experience in the future.
- My Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop documents and images from DeviantArt. That includes some of the images I shared on this blog (Yay!)
- Images and CS5 documents I used to create some of the images for this blog. The latter was low on my list of priorities, but it is still nice to have them.
Besides what I recovered with the removable hard drive, I even found some documents from 2017 and 2018 on a USB drive. Some of that research pertains to the 2018 midterms, but most of that research is lost.
What Can I Not Recover?
Since 2018, I did a ton of research and I created new folders on my computer. All that work is lost and I will have to recreate some of that work anew. Among the lost information was what I listed on January 17, but to be specific, I lost most of the information for posts that I intended to make, including:
- The Donald Trump series. His presidency may be over, but we need an honest accounting of how awful he was while putting his presidency in context. I would like to make that into a video series, as well.
- My thoughts about the reaction to the 2018 midterms, plus third-way politics. I believe that the related research is also gone.
- An entire series about my internship experience. I practically finished writing the series in 2019, but I was holding onto the text to post at a later date. I have to start anew.
- Posts about the 2020 election. That’s on me for not doing the work last year. I might have to let this series go — unless I can come up with an excuse to revisit the 2020 election.
Besides this information, I lost much of my contractor work from the past 3 years, various logs and notepad documents, plus a few essays that I was working on. Most can be recreated, but it will take some time. That said, my spirits were lifted today because I was able to recover my digital artwork.
What Did I Learn from All This?
I think that I have learned at least three lessons from this ordeal:
- On January 17, I talked about what I would need to do to save my work in the future. Among those things is using Google Drive more when it comes to writing posts. (In fact, I wrote this post in Google Docs.) Since I can automatically save text, I will have one version saved and another on WordPress after transferring the text. I can also organize my research with Google Drive and keep track of my files with a spreadsheet.
- Besides using Google Drive, what I still need to learn is how to better manage my time when it comes to making content. When I limit myself to a set amount of time each day, it forces me to prioritize my work and to be more productive while working. Another part of working productively is planning breaks.
- Years ago, another member of The Blogging Meetup suggested that other bloggers make use of their drafts. Whenever we get a writing idea, no matter how undeveloped it is, we should create a draft and save it for later. This is what I should have done with some of the posts in development that I lost and it is something I will do in the future. Even if I end up with 50 or more drafts, I need to keep those ideas for backup so I can work on them later and share them with my readers.
I still have a long way to go to settle into a good workflow, but these are the lessons that will serve me well.
Also, it’s good to share some good news for a change. Let’s see what I can do with this blog in 2021.