The Working Smarter Newsletter V2.0
By Bob "Dr. Mac" LeVitus
Issue 9  •  April 23, 2018

Dear ,

Welcome to issue # 9 of my Insiders newsletter… helping you become more productive for 9 weeks and counting.

Here's what's in store this time:  

  • Why the heck haven't you customized your Toolbar and Sidebar?
  • Optimized storage: The Apple way vs. my way.
  • Bryan Ward's "Get it Done" system in a nutshell.
  • 8 ways not to waste your morning (by James Clear).


    • Meet Daisy, Apple's new iPhone recycling robot.

We've got a lot to cover, so let's dive right in.

Why the hell haven’t you customized your Toolbar and Sidebar???

Back when I was teaching a class on Mac basics at University of Texas Informal Classes it freaked me out that not a single student knew you could customize the Toolbar and Sidebar. And that’s a shame since they’re two powerful features that have been around since time immemorial and are common to all Finder windows in all recent versions of macOS.

If your Sidebar and Toolbar are still just as Apple shipped them, you’re about to see how to make them über-useful. And for those who’ve customized their Sidebar or Toolbar, let me show you a few of my favorite tricks for making them work smarter.

Your Mac will slow down more and more as your startup disk becomes fuller and fuller.

In last week's Dr. Mac's Rants & Raves column last week I said that if you fill up your startup disk completely, your Mac might not even boot and explain why it's essential to maintain adequate free space on your Mac’s startup disk.

How much free space is adequate? And how do you find large files to delete or archive?

This just in (from a reader): "Great article. I made a few changes to the way I do things. Thanks." So, if you don't know how full your startup disk is, or why it's such a good idea to preserve a certain amount of free space, you should absolutely, positively read this column.

A couple of essays worth reading…

I like to read the work of others involved in promoting productivity. You've seen essays by James Clear here before and I've got another today. It's called, " You Get 25,000 Mornings as an Adult: Here are 8 Ways to Not Waste Them," which describes morning routines and why they're so important.

I've got mine and it incorporates several of the ideas presented here by Clear.

Another essay that tickled my fancy this week was, "
My GET IT DONE System In A Nutshell" by Bryan Ward, which offers "the crown jewel of my system:  my daily action plan process, captured on one piece of paper."

If you think that sounds a little like my advice on planning (download my free SuperPlan™ worksheet here), I do too, and that tells me we're on to something useful and good...

Meet Daisy, Apple's new material recovery robot

Last week Apple announced that for every device received at Apple stores and through the Apple GiveBack program from now through April 30, the company will make a donation to the non-profit Conservation International.

As part of its ongoing recycling effort, the company also debuted Daisy, a robot that can more efficiently disassemble iPhone to recover valuable materials.

I realize Daisy isn't going to make you more productive... but it is Earth Day (as I type this) and it is pretty cool.

New archive lets you read back issues of this newsletter at any time

There have been a lot of great tips, hints, links, and stories in previous issues of the newsletter, so I've created an archive. Now, you can access past issues at your convenience at this URL:

Don't forget to bookmark it for future reference!

That's all I've got for now, but, as always, I'll be back with more next week. Until then, I wish you a marvelous week!

All the best,

P. S.  I do have one more thing—a blast from the past and a tip of the hat to Power Computing Corporation and legendary marketing weasel, Mike Rosenfelt...

As some of you recall, I was Director of Evangelism for Power Computing Corporation, the first and best maker of Mac clones, back in the day when Mac clones were still a thing.  

Among other things, we were known for our offbeat sense of humor. So, at Macworld Expo in 1996 we distributed tens of thousands of copies of "The Disc 2," a CD-ROM containing demos, samples, freeware, and a special version of Marathon (one of the most popular games of the day) that featured yours truly as the enemy aliens.

It was entirely Mike Rosenfelt's idea; my only contribution was to spend most of a day in Human Code's green-screen studio.

The disc was made with Macromind/Macromedia director long before the transition from PowerPC to Intel. And, while I think I still have a copy somewhere, I don't think I have a Mac old enough to run Classic apps.

I had all but forgotten about the whole thing until I saw a tweet from @eisnerguy1 last week, saying:

Big fan of the Marathon games so, I ported the "Kill Bob LeVitus Marathon" graphics (released on the "PowerComputing The Disc 2" CD) to Aleph One (Marathon's open-source implementation).

I couldn't figure out how to make the Kill Bob graphics work with Aleph One (I only spent a few minutes trying before I realized it could become a deep rabbit hole), but I did figure out how to extract some of the graphics, so I created this little GIF file demo for you:  
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