The murmur of the snarkmatrix…

August § The Common Test / 2016-02-16 21:04:46
Robin § Unforgotten / 2016-01-08 21:19:16
MsFitNZ § Towards A Theory of Secondary Literacy / 2015-11-03 21:23:21
Jon Schultz § Bless the toolmakers / 2015-05-04 18:39:56
Jon Schultz § Bless the toolmakers / 2015-05-04 16:32:50
Matt § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-05 01:49:12
Greg Linch § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-04 18:05:52
Robin § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-04 05:11:02
P. Renaud § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-04 04:13:09
Jay H § Matching cuts / 2014-10-02 02:41:13

Workspace Minimalism
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Oh, man — Lifehacker has a powerful strategy for home office clutter. The principle is, don’t add more shelves to organize your stuff or spaces to put it in — they’ll just fill up with more junk, like cars and highway lanes in Atlanta. Instead, eliminate physical matter wherever you can, by scanning and shredding your files. Then, you must prebind yourself into a limited, manageable, securable amount of space. You must move your workspace into the closet.

2009-02-20_224754.png

Attentive Snarkmarket readers may know that this is where it gets interesting.

You see, one of the Snarkmasters already has a workspace in his closet, and while not an exact copy, it actually looks a whole lot like that very elegant picture above. And sometimes we joke about the whole “office in a closet” idea.

Another Snarkmaster, who lives in a city that, while not cheap, offers a whole lot more square feet for the money than the locale of SM#1, has a whole library in his apartment, filled with bookshelves and comfy chairs and file cabinets. But it’s also full of empty boxes, piles of books and papers, strollers and baby toys, the occasional laundry basket full of clothes, old card catalogues that are really cool-looking but that he hasn’t figured out what to do with, and these super-beautiful pocket doors that he uses to just close up the whole mess while he taps away on his laptop in the dining room.

The point is, one of these methods has achieved a kind of zen simplicity. The other may very well offer its own path to enlightenment, but it’s going to require a lot of digging to come out on the other end. So, to you, sir, kudos.

4 comments

I wish the LOL wasn’t completely devalued these days, b/c it really most accurately sums up my response. Ah hahahahaha. LOL.

I gotta take a better picture with my monitor visible, like the one above. But here’s oblique proof.

Prebound!

Prebinding is one of my favorite ideas in economics/political science; it comes from Jon Elster in Ulysses and the Sirens. I took a stab at trying to explain it here.

I live in a small studio with a disproportionately large kitchen. To maximize space I moved my office in there (it was also a way to end the distraction of working with the TV on). There is less clutter b/c I am less inclined to stick mail, papers, etc. on the refrigerator, microwave, or kitchen table – where I eat, than I was on the coffee table, tv stand or couch.

I get some strange looks from visitors, but now I can tell them “at least it’s not in the closet.”

I also have a SECOND “office” in my kitchen — there’s a half wall separating the main kitchen area from a smaller room which my landlords turned into an office. It has TWO desks and a skinny bookshelf. One of those desks has a toolbox and an air-conditioning unit on top of it; the other is covered with less useful garbage. The bookshelf used to store cookbooks and reference material — now it holds cardboard boxes and unwanted christmas gifts.

Have I mentioned that I study office organization professionally?

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