Thoughts on Apple Menu Launching Technique

Written and published February 15, 1999

Once again many of you have written to share your thoughts and ideas. Some loved my ideas, others are already using a similar system and have variations to share, and still others disagreed with my methods. There are over 90 letters; too many to share them all. But here are some of the most representative or helpful.

I hope you will continue to share your thoughts and keep this an active, helpful place for everyone to learn new things. Thanks again to everyone for sharing.

Hello Deb!
How can I thank you (and the readers who shared their tips) enough for your series on organizing files.???
Perhaps worst of all is this: my main computer files ... the files that always seem to contain what I need to find immediately - are labeled as follows

  • Pix to cull
  • PICTs to sort
  • Screen shots to name/file
  • More Pix to cull
  • More PICTs to sort
  • More Screen shots to name/file
  • etc.

No surprise here ... my hard copy files have similar folder names.
My new goal includes reading every one of your articles, printing each one, reading them while soaking in the tub, and saving the digital files in a new folder right on my desktop called DEB's Life-Saving Tips.
It is quite probable that at least 50%, perhaps more, of the data on my Zips is redundant ... as in duplicate, triplicate, quadruplicate, quintuplicate, etc..
Do you, or the kind readers, have any ideas for a practical way to expeditiously find and then eliminate the redundant files?
With great appreciation for your column and for your readers who share.
- Pixel Artist

Deb's note: In the near future I can talk about finding redundant files. Meantime, the very act of organizing greatly reduces this problem. The mac will tell you if you try to have two files with the same name in the same folder. So if you organize by logical folders, then save to those folders using the same logic, you're more likely to discover a redundancy. Since it is quite possible to have two files with the same name if they live in different folders, you can end up with multiple version of a file or idea. After organizing back up anew.

I'd just like one addition to your last column on folder organization. After I've created an Apps folder in the Apple Menu I then opened the folder and made it a pop-up folder on the bottom-right of the screen. This way no matter what side of the screen my mouse is on my Apps aren't far away.
Peter Leing

Deb's note: This is a great idea! (Just don't put the tab over the Trash can as that can get pretty confusing. I know. :-)

Hi Deb!
I enjoyed your article this morning. I've actually been doing this for years & configure my users' new machines this way as well. Just one question: Why isn't everyone already doing this? It's basic common sense. But, I'm glad to see that someone (namely you) finally wrote something about a concept that is so simple that it has usually been overlooked; until now.
Anyway Deb, keep up the good work. It's nice to know that someone else is on my wavelength.
-Keith M. Sedor : )
President/CEO, Computer Consultants Group

----Amico approval (with OS 8.1)----

I enjoy your new column - it's nice to see information aimed at the general user!
I just had to comment on Amico for Apple Menu organization. I'm assistant Information Services Manager (tech support) for a large Washington State school district, so I'm pretty careful about recommending extension based shareware - much of it causes more problems for our department than it's worth. I have to say that I've found Amico to be very stable (I've dumped countless "gotta have" extensions and control panels, even if I only suspect they may be a problem).
I use Amico on my G3/8.1 with Action Files (the #1 gotta have!) and on a 7500/8.1 with absolutely no problems. Haven't tried it with 8.5 - that's the next step. I highly recommend it!
I'm recommending your column to our staff - since we have a really tight budget for tech training, they can use all the help we can find!
-Kris Balkowitsch

---- Organization Tip----

Personally, I like to keep all Internet-based aps in a folder within Internet called just that (Internet Aps), all Utilities like you said, all games in Games folder, and everything else in Applications. The mp3s go in Music, and any movie in Movies. The idea is that anyone using my computer can quickly and easily find what they want by only going in at a max 3 folders. And I use FinderPop to save myself ap launching time.
Keep up the good work!
Olen Anderson

---- Organization Tip----

I've been doing the same thing for years. Another handy org method I use is to divide my documents into an "Active" folder and "Closed" folder. A folder is created for every client/project, even if there is only one file in it. The active/closed sets allows me to do very quick daily backups and move things to closed only every 3 months, or so. Works very well and I have converted many other friends and clients to this system. Thanks for your insightful tips.
-Bruce Belton

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