Power User - Desktop Ideas (Part 2)

Education & Training with Tech Training for You!

If you like to learn new things that enhances your online time or makes better use of your time, then I call you a "power user." I am one of that type too! :) One of my webinar outlines goes into different ideas under this theme and hopefully in the near future it will be the theme of an upcoming virtual classroom course. (My current course "Graphics for Bloggers 101" is currently being recorded. It is a 10 module course with just 2 more recordings to go.)

Anyway, what are some "power user" ideas as regards to your desktop?
In the Desktop - Part 1 post, we looked at a vertical taskbar, a custom desktop collage, and keeping your drop zone clear (go back and check it out if you missed the previous post!)

Notice the diagram below for the new points for us to talk about:

Idea #1 - Shortcut to a "Cleanup Folder"

I'm a big proponent of keeping your desktop clean! But I know how it goes, as much as you WANT to keep things in organized folders, it is often really hard to keep everything perfectly organized. (This is not an excuse to stop trying though!) I keep a "cleanup folder" for files that I am through with but that I don't want to delete. Notice that my recycle bin and my cleanup folder are close to each other. It is really an A/B choice to make, keep the file? or delete it? If there is any chance that you may make reference to it later, keep it! (just not on your desktop - move it to the cleanup folder). File naming strategies are really important if you want to ever find it again. Use keywords! From all our SEO training, I know this is second nature to us. Keyword name your files with a few smart words for future searches.

Idea #2 - RocketDock App Launcher

Starting in Windows 7, you can now "pin your top favorites" to the taskbar for very easy access. I pin my favorites to the taskbar  but have a lengthy list of go-to apps though that would not all fit there. One launcher app I've used for quite a while helps me keep all my best apps an easy click away. It is a free app called RocketDock. I have it attached to the bottom of my screen. It auto-hides when you aren't using it. When you need it, just move to the bottom of the screen and it pops up. It has a really nice animated flow as you hover over it. You can then add your favorites to it for easy access. It looks like I currently have picked out about 17! I'm sure you'll recognize some - you'll get bonus points if you name the harder ones :) MS Word and Excel can't be seen because I have assigned hotkeys (Ctrl+Alt+W and E) for those, but ah, setting hotkeys, that's another (future) post.

Idea #3 - Google Gadgets

Google Desktop (local file search with Desktop Gadgets, download link) is a free app that you can download. The reason that I install it is ONLY for the RSS gadget that you can put on the desktop. (Yes I know windows has "desktop gadgets" a.k.a "windows sidebar" - however their feeds gadget is not as good! In particular, the simple ability to make the height extend as tall as you want is not possible, but it is with Google's) RSS feeds to me are essential to keeping pulse in the up to the minute news both regular local stories as well as tech blogs and pages (including your favorite AR bloggers). Many times throughout the day, a headline catches my eye. I can click once to see a further synopsis pop out and then click the heading to jump to the story for more details if it sounds interesting.

Besides the RSS gadget, I also enjoy the system meters (CPU, Memory, Disk, Network). You can catch for example on low memory and close some apps down if before you max out your memory (did I say this was a power user tip??) Also the weather and clock gadgets round out my nice information area. (brrr winter is here!)

App note: Google has discontinued further development on the Google Desktop app. However it is still available for download (see link above) and works fine. I turn off all of the search functions though. I don't need them and don't want it taking up system resources. Too bad you can't just download the gadgets app only. And if I discover a windows desktop gadget that does RSS feeds in a better way, I'll be going that way next! (if you want to learn about RSS feeds in google reader - my other fav way of reading feeds - see the post RSS Feeds in Google Reader)

There you have it, three more ideas to ponder. If you like any or all of the ideas, I'll be happy to hear it! :)

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Re-Blogged 3 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Luis Iniguez 12/23/2011 06:40 PM
  2. Cheryl Ritchie 12/25/2011 10:48 PM
  3. Jimmy Phan 12/28/2011 11:43 AM
Real Estate Technology & Tools
Tech Corner
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George Bennett
Inactive - Port Orford, OR
Inactive Principal Broker, GRI

Thanks for the tips. Happy Holidays.

Dec 23, 2011 05:06 PM #28
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA


Another good one to bookmark.

So much information to digest. Thank goodness you are so generous with your time and your knowledge. You are a treasure to us who are not techno-phobes, just techno-challenged.


Dec 23, 2011 07:09 PM #29
Craig Daniels
Tech Training for You! - Staten Island, NY
Technology Instructor/Project Consultant

Jon - if you pick up even a single new point, then success! thanks for visiting :)

Brian - hope you like both parts, thx

Marc - yes google is focusing and redirecting their resources

Eric - see you on the bookmarked returns - always happy to see you - :) thx!

Judi - I think I had one of those for a while until I realized I never got back to "sort" them :) changed mine to a more realistic name after that

Erica - I love to give ideas - we get to give them our own twists to fit - thanks for the visit :)

Dec 24, 2011 02:55 AM #30
Craig Daniels
Tech Training for You! - Staten Island, NY
Technology Instructor/Project Consultant

Pfanns - I love when we spend a little time investment to help us be organized and save time later! thanks as always for the visit! :)

George - you are very welcome, thx

Pacita - so glad for the non-techno-phobes! happy always to see you :)

Dec 24, 2011 02:57 AM #31
David Gibson CNE, 719-304-4684 ~ Colorado Springs Relocation
Colorado Real Estate Advisers LLC - Colorado Springs, CO
Relocation, Luxury & Lifestyle residential

It has been a privilege and “gift” to subscribe to your blog. I have learned a lot from you. Wishing you a very happy holiday season. Looking forward to more of your creative ideas in 2012. I hope the “employment” picture for you in 2012 is fantastic.

Dec 24, 2011 10:09 AM #32
Phil Leng
Retired - Kirkland, WA
Phil Leng - Retired

Hi Craig,

You are a great teacher.

Patiently pointing things out in detail that we might know - but then again, maybe not.

Thanks for the post, and MerrY Christmas to you


Dec 24, 2011 09:31 PM #33
Curtis Van Carter
Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group - Yountville, CA
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire

Merry Xmas

Dec 25, 2011 04:21 AM #34
Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional
Charles Rutenberg Realty - Clearwater, FL
Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a successful, prosperous 2012

Dec 25, 2011 06:31 AM #35
Marge Piwowarski
Phoenix AZ Horse Property - Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix AZ Horse Property, LLC

 Merry Christmas to You!

 Wishing that 2012 will be the Best Year of your Life to date, that you will enjoy Peace, Love, Joy, Health and Prosperity.


Dec 25, 2011 07:50 AM #36
Tammy Emineth
Personal SEO - Website SEO and Real Estate Marketing - Marysville, WA
Content Marketer, SEO Teacher, Website Fixer

Merry Christmas!!! I hope you have had a wonderful year, better years to come and a glorious Holiday!!!

Dec 25, 2011 11:34 AM #37
Sheila Newton Team Anderson & Greenville SC
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - C. Dan Joyner - Anderson, SC
Selling the Upstate since 1989

Hope your Holiday is wonderful and your 2012 is spectacular!

Dec 25, 2011 11:46 AM #38
Craig Daniels
Tech Training for You! - Staten Island, NY
Technology Instructor/Project Consultant

David - wow very nice of you to say so - appreciate that :)

Phil - I love to teach, if I get validation of doing a good job as you say, I'm happy - thanks! :)

Curtis - Barb - Marge - Tammy - Sheila - so very kind of all of you to come visit with special holiday greetings - thank you friends :)

Dec 25, 2011 02:50 PM #39
Paul Antonelli
NextHome Antonelli Realty - Kissimmee, FL
Broker Owner; NextHome Antonelli Realty

Love your blog and I always love to hear about new stuff, especially techy stuff I can use in my business. This isreally great info.

Thanks for the post


Dec 26, 2011 11:43 AM #40
Craig Daniels
Tech Training for You! - Staten Island, NY
Technology Instructor/Project Consultant

Paul - very glad to hear that you enjoy my blog - thanks for visiting :)

Dec 26, 2011 02:26 PM #41
Marjorie Taylor
Riverside Homes - Saint Augustine, FL
New Homes in St. Augustine Florida
My desktop makes me DIZZY! Great post, it has motivated me to clean up my act, and become one of your subscribers.
Dec 27, 2011 05:32 AM #42
Sandy Acevedo
951-290-8588 - Chino Hills, CA
RE/MAX Masters, Inland Empire Homes for Sale

Hi Craig, a lot of great ideas here. More cleaning up to do, like the clean up folder idea.

Dec 27, 2011 06:23 PM #43
Jimmy Phan
Phan real estate group in hickory


continue part 2....lot more great stuffs to do and learn and implement.

thanks again and again.

jimmy phan

Dec 28, 2011 11:41 AM #44
Curtis Van Carter
Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group - Yountville, CA
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire


Just wanted to wish you a Happy New Year and great 2012. Also, thank you again for trying to help me with my right mouse click issues. I almost positive it is Adobe Flash and found a work around by using Google Chrome. I like it better than IE overall but both have their pluses and minuses. cheers cvc

Dec 31, 2011 04:27 AM #45
Craig Daniels
Tech Training for You! - Staten Island, NY
Technology Instructor/Project Consultant

Marjorie - I'm glad to hear I gave some ideas to you - happy to have connected with you :)

Sandy - sounds great, happy to see you :)

Jimmy - that's terrific - glad you stopped by to visit and nice of you to reblog, thx

Curtis - i'm with you on the liking chrome thought, glad you overcame some tech issues LOL - thx for the visit! :)

Jan 01, 2012 01:32 AM #46
Debbie Walsh
Shahar Management - Middletown, NY
Hudson Valley NY Real Estate 845.283-3036

I am definitely bookmarking this because every few months my desktop needs to be cleaned up in a major way.  At some point I am going to learn how to keep it clean all the time!

Jan 13, 2012 06:17 AM #47
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