Saturday, May 14, 2016

Wiped clean

I have heard of ransomware, a scam where a user clicks on a bad link or otherwise gives the computer permission to receive a file or action that locks it up.  The user is then informed that the files will be unlocked for a fee.  If the fee is paid, the files may or may not be unlocked.  Regardless, nearly all the time, the money is unrecoverable.  Hearing about that reminded me of the time I accidentally had my computer delete all the contents of what I considered at the time to be my most valuable disk.  That wasn't a scam.  It was just basic carelessness, mindless action without watching what I was doing.  


Turned out to be one of life's most lasting lessons because I realized that I almost never re-use those files.  In fact, I very rarely thought of them or went to the trouble of opening them and looking at them.  The few times I did showed me work that was out-of-date or contained statements I no longer supported or endorsed.  The lesson added to the values we had learned from reading Don Anslett's "Clutter's Last Stand", which is basically that I did love and admire my grandmother even if I gave the little memento vase she had to the Goodwill store.


Lynn loves getting rid of things and almost never backtracks on herself to wish she still had something given or thrown away.  I am not quite as strong as she is in that way but I am more volatile once I get in a throw-away mood.  I have been having trouble finding and updating the files on my iPod, the ones that I listen to while driving.  Yesterday, I used the easy options in Windows 10 and wiped my computer clean.  Not the first time I have ever had a computer system re-installed but it is the first time in a long time and the first time I did it without some sort of serious problem propelling me.


It is always surprising what is no longer on your computer after a clean re-build of the system.  Unless you have very good records, you won't recall what you have added to the computer since you got it.  I use Google Docs, Google Drive and Gmail for most of my computing and they are all in the cloud.  The idea is that I can get to them easily from any computer and don't need to lug equipment around with me.  That is basically true but there are little exceptions here and there.  Still, it feels free and light to re-start.  I did the same thing, at the same time, to my iPad.  So, today, I am light and rejuvenated. (I did use a little caution and made a recovery record on a good backup disk the day before.  I have already made use of it so a little caution and preparation was a good idea.)

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