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The chore to end all chores…

I have decided to embark on an absolutely dreaded task – yet again, I might add: Inventory cleanup! However, this time around not only cleanup but also organization and creating some kind of a system to easily identify what I have and where I may find it… A dire necessity at this stage since I am at the point where I am running around in the same pair of cruddy old jeans and t-shirt, not to mention the same old moth-eaten ears and tail, simply because I have so much stuff that I no longer know what I have, where it is or what it looks like.

I am two things: A hardcore builder and a hardcore shopper. So, inevitably I have a lot of stuff which I hang on to because I assume that it will come in handy at some point when I am constructing something. And then I buy other peoples output like it’s going out of style: I love the stuff that so many of my fellow designers churn out and so I am keeping an archive of Second Life design output. Anything from hair to avatar attachments to clothes to cars and hoverpods and spaceship. These last I am not even remotely skilled at manipulating, but no matter, I get them anyway.

I have this idea that SL design is a hugely important endeavor which will have considerable ramifications on design output as well as design theory in the future, affecting the design of RL objects and even more importantly the underlying design strategies: I do believe the effects are already felt in fashion design but I am fairly certain that the fundamental tenet of SL design, which, as far as I can make out, is “playful creativity” will find its way into core design strategies regardless of what the thing to be designed may turn out to be.

So, it is isn’t (only) blatant, unabashed, shameless, in-your-face consumerism when I rush out and purchase every conceivable object rezzed under the virtual sun, I really do have a professional interest here.

But interest, shminterest – I am stuck here with an inventory that is pretty much unmanageable. The funny thing is this: It turns out that I do not even have that much! I consulted Truthseeker on this little matter, wanted to know how many items were in his/her inventory which led to a general discussion during which I was informed that there were people out there with as many as 30000 items to their name! Me? I only have around 7000? And I am groaning under what I have? What do those people do for goodness sakes!? What do I do? Unless I really like something or think it will be really useful I have no compunction whatsoever at tossing it out on its virtual ear. Regardless of who gave it to me, I might add. I toss most (if not indeed all) notecards after I have read them, keep all LM’s in one notecard, do not collect calling cards (I have never understood their purpose or significance anyway?!) and I do periodically stow not-totally-unwanted stuff in boxes which I keep as meta folders so to speak…

Spoke to soon didn’t I, back then when I called old Xia anal-retentive? But! I am so going to be teaching her highness how it is really done! I had followed up on Ravenelle’s advice on one of her flickr posts about putting an image of the outfit into the folder for easy recall as to what the thing actually looks like. However, it seems to end up taking too long to render the image when one is actually in SL and extremely impatient to see it. And also, in my case, this seems to be a bit of a wasted effort since I usually cannot remember what a particular item was called to begin with and am thus stuck finding the image to look at. So, I have decided to develop this new system based upon spreadsheets (I am not a designer for nothing you know? They teach us this sort of stuff!) which will actually reside in my harddrive where I can access it with an image viewer. So, each spread contains thumbnails/names of the contents of a particular folder and also each spread is exactly 1920×1200 pixels, which is my screen resolution, so I can see the whole thing all at once. Naturally, it will go without saying that not all of the contents of a particular folder will fit into one spread, in which case there will be several named …01, …02, etc.

I have started where attention is the most needed: My hair. This is the partial content of my so called “object hair” folder, by which I mean hair which has some kind of an object embedded into it. I am packing away the ones that I am not quite ready to toss yet, but do not like so terribly much and everything that stays immediately accessible gets photographed and named. Once the object hair is cleared up, I will be proceeding to mohawks and so forth… And then to avatar attachments, of which I have tons – the ears and tails alone probably add up to gigabytes! And, needless to say, one does live in total dread of the boots folder(s)…

teeee heeee… And once I am done in SL, I may even go and tackle my RL closet… Hmmmm, there’s a thought… Would spreadsheets help there as well, I wonder? ….


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