A love of files

I like the digital file, the idea of it, the amorphousness of it. A file is a blanker canvas even than the purest, plainest cotton or paper. A file is a place; a file is an (almost) unbounded permissive entity; a file is a container, for a memory, an idea, an image, an expressive moment, or just an email.

I keep my files close to me because they are an extension of me and separation would feel like mutilation.

In my home directory I have 237,703 files — excluding all system files, hidden files, version control files, just the files that matter. A couple slices of the sum of those files are recorded below. I wonder how those numbers will look at the end of this life.

78,857 personal photos and videos
  4142 emails I've chosen to keep
  1023 GPS tracks of my journeys over the face of the earth
   585 Assorted notes
   498 Varied journal files

The latter two contain 422,018 of my own written words, nearly half a million little pieces of me.

These files are a poor proxy for a life, but everything except life itself is a poor proxy for a life, and I love even the little of it that these files manage to capture.

I love files, both in spite and because of their limits. Look after your files.