My databases

As I was saying, one of the immediate effects of my old laptop’s crash was losing my databases. But putting it like this is telling only half the story.

For one thing, I had been thinking about discontinuing most of them anyway. In fact, I had stopped updating the one concerned with the number of ciggies I was smoking as early as May last year. I suspect most people would think me crazy for even starting the one that similarly recorded the number of my sleeping hours. The one recording my earnings might have some purpose if I didn’t keep my payslips anyway, given how broad the range of my monthly income is. And seeing that knowing how much water I use apparently doesn’t make me do anything about it either way… All in all I only regretted not having them just for the record. Anyway, I wouldn’t consider starting them all over again.

The one database I still felt I needed was the one focused on my current financial balance. I only know of two ways of not spending more than I earn: clearing considerably more than I’m possibly able to squander, and keeping a daily record of how much I’ve left until next payday, divided into sections like “ordinary daily allotment”, “unexpected expenses”, “savings” and so forth. I shortly realized that although I’d previously only used OpenOffice’s word processor (for opening .pdf files), they also offered a spreadsheet. As I had to redownload the former anyway, I included the latter and recreated this database.

I was a little frustrated about the last one. There’s a book about go opening by Ikuro Ishigure which ends with ten test problems for the reader with graded answers, and transferring my ’94, ’96 and ’04 results from paper to laptop I lost the comparison with this year’s testing – which was at the time of the crash well under way. Yet I remembered enough to know, after completing it, that I was safely above any of the previous overall results. Again, the loss was mostly annoying to the archivist in me.

And then, last night, I realized that I had downloaded the OpenOffice spreadsheet after reconciling myself to the idea that the databases had been lost. I put the August back-up CD into the new laptop again and, voilà, nothing easier than saving the old .xls files as .ods ones.

All the same, I’m not going to rebegin updating them. I’m glad to have them for the record – but the interruption let me fully realize that when all is said and done, they became just a waste of time I was going on with purely out of inertia.



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