Email from an idol

Esther says I have an unhealthy obsession with Merlin Mann of 43folders, and for the most part she is probably right. Essentially I want to be Merlin Mann (although I don’t have as cool of a name). He is a productivity guru, even though he says he is the most productive procrastinator in the world.

Back to the point of this post.

About a week ago, I sent Merlin an email, it went a little something like this:

Merlin,

My wife says I have an unhealthy idolization of you as you end up being quoted in far too many of our conversations.

I do have a question that I think you might be able to glean some light on. I have a lot of applications in my Applications folder on my fancy new Macbook, but I don’t feel that they are organized enough. I normally use Quicksilver to launch my applications, but I have some orphans that I don’t use. Do I just delete them? Do I put them in a “Fallow Programs” folder and check it regularly? What would you suggest?

Thank you very much in advance, and if this email gets eaten by your email robots, I won’t take it personally. :)

Jered

He is just the guy that would be able to solve my issue. I really didn’t think I would get an email back, but low and behold, today, in my inbox I had a email from Merlin Mann. It read:

On 2006–12–11, at 10:51, Jered Benoit wrote:

My wife says I have an unhealthy idolization of you as you end up being quoted in far too many of our conversations.

Awesome! Everybody loves being quoted. My wife never quotes me, if it’s any consolation. She doesn’t even listen to my podcasts.

I do have a question that I think you might be able to glean some light on. I have a lot of applications in my Applications folder on my fancy new Macbook, but I don’t feel that they are organized enough. I normally use Quicksilver to launch my applications, but I have some orphans that I don’t use. Do I just delete them? Do I put them in a “Fallow Programs” folder and check it regularly? What would you suggest?

The big question is what would organizing them do for you? Like any kind of organizational thing, it’s smart to start with a desired result — good way to avoid accidental busy work. May not be much payoff for you futzing here.

Another thing to think about is that some (not all) Apps get confused if you change where they are located on your drive. This is increasingly not a problem on OS X (thank goodness), but it’s something to keep in mind.

And finally, as far as deleting, I would only delete the very large ones that you never use; they’re not doing you any harm, and you never know when you might need ‘em.

Thanks a million for the note and the kind words. May you and your wife have many happy healthy and organized years together.

all the best,

/m

Wow! A real email from my productivity idol.

It’s going to be a good week.