Server Safari—the act of traversing the Serengeti of files stored on your hard drive to find one specific thing when you can’t quite remember what you called it or when you made it. 

Much like the eternal question, “How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop,” most of us do not know how long it takes to successfully locate the Prodigal File, not because we take a bite out of the hard drive to pull it out, but because we give up entirely and just go a different direction as often as we can. If there’s any way to just use something you already have handy, that would be so much easier that we’ll even sacrifice a tiny bit of quality to avoid it. The end product will be great, no one will ever know that it could have been 1% better in one place, and who can say it actually would have been better anyway—what if we went though all that trouble and then ended up saying, “Nah, let’s go with the old way?” Just not worth it.

A Scientist’s Safari involves tagging specific animals so they can watch the herds from a safe distance, tracking their migratory and hunting patterns, etc. They can let the animals run wild on the plains and still be able to pull up information on a tagged member of the herd at any time.

Ideally, we’d all be completely organized. And there would be no such thing as hunger, or disease, or war, or bad haircuts. 

With asset management software, when you make your files, you can tag your files with keywords so you can find them by content later. You can search for “Lion” and find the footage from last winter’s documentary, even though it was hot in Africa in December so you remembered it being in the summer and you never would have found it by date. Perfectly understandable, and exactly the sort of thing that would have taken hours to find through Server Safari.

With proper asset management, you can always find what you’re looking for, even if you aren’t quite as good at remembering things as you thought you were. The human mind can only really remember 3-4 things at once, so as long as you’ve done more than 3-4 things so far today, you probably don’t remember every detail, and you don’t realize how many of those details you do remember were inserted by your imagination to fill in the memory gaps with logic. If you can’t remember the exact title of something you worked on year ago, that’s normal.

Which means remembering all of them would be not normal, and that’s what you’ve banked on. 

You think you are going to remember what you’ve titled every file you’ve ever made because…you are a Savant and have been waiting all your life for just this moment to prove your greatness to the world. Or not—I got nothing.

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