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Dropbox: Saving Your Files online

Posted by on Oct 2, 2011 in Other, Time management | 0 comments

Last month I had bad luck with computers. My power chord on my main computer died, so I bought a new one which also burned out. No power chord basically meant that my computer was virtually useless. I decided to switch to an iMac. The reason for this was actually convenience. My dad had an iMac I bought him a couple of years ago that he was no longer using since I got him an iphone.

Losing the ability to use your computer or having a computer die makes you think about your files. I keep all of my important files backed up on an external hard drive, but that can also die. I finally decided what I needed was  a place online to store my files. That way I would have the ability to access them regardless of what computer I was using or where I was.

I wasn’t actually looking for a place to keep all of my files, but just a few select ones that I didn’t want to loose.

I looked at a few different sites, and finally decided on Dropbox for two reasons. One, it had applications on available on many platforms. Two, you start out with 2GB of space, but get an additional 250mb of space (up to 10Gb) for every person that you refer. Not a bad deal.

The user interface is also good. Dropbox shows up as a folder and whatever you put into it gets uploaded to your Dropbox file.

So here is my referral link to Dropbox. If you use this link we both get an additional 250mb of space.

Click here to Sign up for Drop Box


Once you sign up, please feel free to comment on how you like it or don’t. Also, feel free to comment if you have found a better service.


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How to Make a Computer Desk Out of Pallets

Posted by on Sep 29, 2011 in How To, Other | 2 comments

For the last couple of years I have been using a dining table as my computer desk. Since I got tired of having to move my computer, and since I have an iMac coming, I needed a new desk. I checked out a few of the ones available at the local stores, but after not liking the styles (or the prices), I decided to build my own. With the exception of 3 pieces (the top and two supports) the entire thing is made out of pallets. I spent about a total of $25 for all of the parts

Computer Desk Materials

Two of the panels are basically used as is. Though I did remove some of the bottom panels for a little more leg room. I dismantled the third panel for parts, which became the legs.

Bottom Panel

Then I just took longer boards I removed from the other pallet and connected the two.

Pallet Computer Desk with Legs

Lastly, I added a couple of cross braces to add stability, and painted the entire thing white. Depending on your location, you may be able to get away without staining or painting, but in the high humidity we have here it would probably have already rotted away.

Completed and painted

And since my new computer arrived yesterday: here is the final result!

Desk with iMac


The only thing left is to build a slide out trey for the keyboard and mouse. I am still thinking about the best way to go about it. Let me know if you have any ideas.

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30 day challenges, how-to videos, product reviews, adventure videos, and other updates coming to Simplistic Thoughts

Posted by on Sep 15, 2011 in Enjoying Life, Health, Language, Money, Other, Personal Development, Time management | 0 comments

When I first started this blog several years ago I used to post several times a week. I then moved from Tokyo to pursue Internet Marketing and started focusing more on making a living on the web than just enjoying it. Unfortunately, I tended to ignore this website.

Lately, I am finally starting to learn how to do both. I am really excited with the content I have planned for this blog, and I think you will enjoy it.

Lately, I am really getting into video and editing and I have been wanting to do more with this on the blog. My camera was flooded on a snorkeling trip, but I have a new HD camera on the way and figured what better way to tell you about the new plans for the website than make a video. The camera hasn’t arrived yet and neither has my new computer (I am typing this on a 6 year old laptop). But, I figured rather than wait, I would get started and use what I have.

This was shot on my iphone and edited using a free program on my 6 year old laptop. Let me know what you think, and please leave comments and subscribe (you can find a subscribe button on the sidebar) to my YouTube account. I will have many more vids on the way.

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If You’re Gonna Do Something, Do It Right

Posted by on Aug 7, 2011 in Other, Personal Development | 0 comments

These are the words I used to hear from my grandfather all the time when I was young. This and “If it’s worth doing it’s worth doing right” I think that these words really stuck with me, because I’ve always had great respect for people who are good at their craft.

It doesn’t really matter what it is, whether it’s photography, sports, business negotiations, etc. Somebody who puts in the amount of hours it takes to get really good, and goes through all the frustrating perseverance it takes to get there, has an extreme amount of dedication. When I say anyone, maybe I should be a little more clear. I am usually more impressed when the skill is a useful one. Someone who gets really good at some kind of drinking game could have probably spent their time better elsewhere.

Japan is definitely one of the places where you can find people who are very dedicated to their crafts. One instance that comes to mind is the first time I visited Japan. I was in Kyoto and was walking down the street looking into the windows of the shops. There was a sweets store that had a very large window so you could actually watch the chef make the sweets. What I was so impressed with the the focus and precision in which he went about it. It was obvious that he had spent years perfecting his methods and had a system which seemed to be very efficient.

While here in Japan, I have also had the chance to meet a master sword maker, Kawachi Kunihira, whose level of work is so high that it has moved beyond the level of being able to be judged.  When he was young, his father told him no to pursue sword making because it was a dead art and he would never make any money. He ignored his father and pursued his dream. He is now one of the top sword makers in Japan. His swords sell in the tens of thousands of dollars. For those interested in Japanese sword making, Kawachi Kunihira actually wrote a book several years ago titled “The Art of the Japanese Sword“.

The other day I came across this video and was very impressed. I don’t know if this guy does other jobs in this motorcycle factory, but he is an amazing pin striper. Watching him do this was almost mesmerizing for me. I feel that only a machine should be able to do it that perfect. Check out the video and let me know what you think.

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Hawaiian Flowers: Plumeria

Posted by on Aug 2, 2011 in Enjoying Life, Other | 0 comments

A couple of years ago my wife started doing hula, which meant that she also became interested in Hawaii and Hawaiian flowers. Last year she received a Plumeria tree as a gift and ended up getting several others as well. After a lot of water and making sure to keep them inside during typhoons, they are finally blooming.

Actually only one of the several that we have is blooming, but I have to admit that the flowers are beautiful. They also smell really good at night.


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Browser Tabs: Time Saver or Time Waster?

Posted by on Jul 6, 2011 in Other, Time management | 2 comments

As I write this post, I currently have 9 tabs open in my browser. Do I need them all? Not really, but it seems it is always easier to open another tab than close one if I am not done with it completely. I also tend to use tabs to save webpages. Not a great practice, but I do it anyway. Having the ability to open multiple tabs is definitely a benefit, and can save time having to switch between many pages. But at what point does it become more of a time waster than a time saver?

The ability to have two or three tabs open at one time is great. You can compare products, use it to copy and paste, find out information from one site while using it for another, etc. It is much easier than having to switch between pages and requires less work by your computer. However, if you are like me, and commonly have 5+ pages open on a regular basis, then you are probably wasting more time than you are gaining.

The reason is that it takes more time to find what you want. Each time you switch tabs, you will have to search for the one you want. Not to mention that as you open more tabs, they get smaller, making it more difficult to tell what each one is. It also makes it easier to get side-tracked. You may accidentally open a tab you forgot about and start reading it, loosing track of what you were doing in the first place.

While the solution is simple (don’t open so many tabs), actually applying it is more difficult. I think you have to create a rule/habit. Make a rule that you won’t open more than 2-4 tabs at any one time. If you need to save something, then bookmark it and close the page. You will be able to work much more efficiently if you don’t have a bunch of pages to distract you.

I have closed all but two of my pages, and will try to keep it that way. Can you break the addition?

I am curious to everyone’s experience with browser tabs. How many do you keep open on average?

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