Sunday, July 16, 2023

New Adventures + old email You Can Do

Last week I shared my plan for what to do with your Google Drive if you are moving from one district to another in New Adventures + old files You Can Do . I do NOT recommend using Takeout or Transfer as I firmly believe we are all digital hoarders. If you are making a move, use this as an opportunity to go through your Drive and take what will benefit you, not what will weigh you down - and if your Drive was a mess then, it's not like it's going to clean itself up by moving to a new account!

Something else that you might need or want to look at as you move from one district to another is your Gmail. This one is a bit trickier. You can't really "export" emails. You can export your contacts.  But honestly ... stop and ask yourself ... which ones do you really need? And if you are brutally honest with yourself, I don't think you find there are all that many.

I'm going to share my thoughts - but this is all based on the idea that you have NOT tangled your personal emails with your school emails - meaning you don't handle bills or personal accounts through your school email address. If you DO, PLEASE STOP. I think of it as "multiple identities". Anything to do with home gets done with my personal Gmail. Anything related to my job, through school email. I don't cross these lines. Period.

Just with my Drive, I'm a big user of labels in my Gmail. Here's also where knowing some searching tips comes in really handy. When you find the ones you want to preserve, forward them to the newly created - or personal account - you are using to house the files you are taking with you.

Here are some things to think about:
  • Looking for an email(s) from a specific person? Search their name at the top ... and comb through the ones that appear.
  • Looking for an email(s) about a specific topic? Search the topic at the top ... and go through those.
  • If you use labels, think about which labels are worth even looking at - and go through JUST those.
  • Want to have email addresses for certain people? Search for one of their emails and forward that. Their email will show up for you.
You might just find there aren't a whole lot of emails you really need to keep. 

Good luck! Making changes is always hard - even when it's a really good change. 

Also, do NOT wait! Some districts are very strict about shutting off accounts. And once you are locked out, you could be locked out forever. 

FINAL tip: in the future, create in your personal account and share it to your school account. Then make a copy to use at school. Making it in your personal account will prevent the above 'song and dance' in the future.

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Sunday, July 9, 2023

New Adventures + old files You Can Do

How's your summer going? It's still the early part of July, and I am fully enjoying the slower pace, the sunshine, and the over all relaxed atmosphere in my house. I'm writing this in one of my most favorite spots at my house ... the front porch.

One of the pieces of my job at the end of the year is to help those who are retiring or leaving our district decide what to do with items in their Google Drive. I know, based on the conversations in the Google Trainer group, many districts struggle with this. There really isn't any one perfect method. I'm not the biggest fan of Takeout or Transfer - too often you are taking a bunch of "crap" that you will never look at or use again.

Instead, I always recommend making 2 folders - "Keepers" and "I don't need". (Some of you may need a 3rd folder "Transfer ownership".) Create these, then go through your Drive and make FAST decisions. Don't open everything, don't stress about it, just decide. 

Here are some questions to ask yourself as you go through your Drive:
  • did I use this file/folder THIS school year?
  • will it help me in my future position?
  • should I digitally "give" this to someone who is staying here?
You could also use the "Last modified" date to help you decide if you are unsure. If it wasn't modified in the pas 2 years or so, I'd say you most likely won't miss it. You might be surprised at what you REALLY end up taking with you.

Once you've done this clean up, don't worry about the "I don't need" folder. Just leave it alone. For the "Keepers", it gets a little tricky. You CAN share it with a personal or other school domain account, but that doesn't transfer ownership. You CAN make copies in your personal account ... but this takes a TON of time.

  • right click on your "Keepers" folder & select download
  • note where it downloads - it'll become a "zip" file
  • click ONCE on the zip file - THIS IS SUPER IMPORTANT ... ONCE. ONLY ONCE.
  • you should now see a file folder named "Keepers". DO NOT OPEN IT.
  • Open the Google account you want to move it to
    • MAKE sure you have the setting turned on to "Convert uploads to Google Docs editor format" 
  • drag & drop the "Keepers" folder in

You have just saved what YOU choose to take with you to your new adventure! It might even be smart to create a brand new Google account to keep your brain straight, or depending on how much you decide to keep, you might need it for storage purposes. 

Transferring ownership is a wonderful ability within Google Drive. If you are good with it and you don't have 1,000 files, rather than sharing or making others to make copies of files you own, you can transfer ownership. Yes, it must be done to each individual file - ugh - but it IS easy. OR ... share the folder with those who need/want these files and they can make their copies for themselves. One final option - if you have the ability, you could create a shared drive and drop files in there, adding on those who need/want them, and they can pull the files out and become the owners. This all depends on the sheer number and the comfort level of you and those you are sharing with.

ONE MORE THOUGHT ... have you thought about your email??? Let's tackle that next week!

*** Every Monday, I share a newsletter with a collection of Tech You Can Do resources. It is delivered right to your inbox. Interested? Sign up here!  ***