Since last week I have been preparing to move offices, just a few doors down the hall. I found that in the course of twelve years or so I have accumulated about 12 cubic feet of stuff I have no further use for, including
- documentation of an accounting system abandoned ten years ago, going back to the proposals from consultants who would help us install it, the schedules of implementation, the details of upgrades
- documentation for the accounting system that replaced that one, and which has itself been replaced
- many shelf feet of manuals for software we no longer use
- several shelf feet of books about software that is obsolete or that we no longer use
- CDs with software that the vendor hasn't supported in years
- CDs that I probably burned but have no idea why--when did I want to use Ubuntu Linux 8 (Hardy Heron)?--or was that the guy who has since moved halfway across the country?
- 3.5 inch "floppy" disks (and some mailers for them)
- tapes for which we no longer have drives--8 mm, 4 mm, DLT
- lists of employees from events years ago, so that most of those named have moved on
- enough legal pads, steno pad, and other tablets, mostly blank, that I could not fill them up in six months without disabling myself with writer's cramp
One lesson that I hope I have learned is to be cautious at tech shows. For a while I had a tech-show mug for every year I had been with my employer; I never drink from them, and use at most one, as a holder for pens and markers. And tech shows will hand out tablets, which I hardly use, but then don't discard.