For years my computer desktop has mostly been a place for various shortcuts to programs or documents that I use a lot, and for current projects I am working on. My choice of computer wallpaper for the background was something pretty that also made it easy to see all the icons. I usually have between 50 and 60 icons showing at a time.. I had a good idea of where the most important icons were and would move one to be more prominent, if I kept forgetting which position it was in. I never thought of it being able to do anything else.
I had tried Trello, but I found it to be TMI for projects, and not enough to a bigger overall view of what was on my computer.
Then I saw Dvorah’s Desktop Organizer Wallpaper Kit and I immediately saw how it could make my desktop so much better. The wall paper divides my screen space into 7 areas that can be used like areas of a bulletin board. You can label them, leave them with no labels, or use the version with labels that made a lot of sense to me: Top Priorities, Sticky Note, My Folders, To-Do List, Programs I Use, To Be Filed, and one without a label for whatever you want to put there.
That pretty well described the things I already had on my desktop, so it was easy to just drag each one to the space it belonged to. It was going to be impossible to misplace icons any more. I was able to sort the text files to general information, time-critical Top priorities, and other less important to-do stuff. Sticky notes are where I put things I use all the time, like my clipart folder. “Programs I use” are where the shortcuts to the programs I use the most go. (Word, Powerpoint, Affinity Designer, Gimp). Things were so easy to find – getting started was so much easier. My mind was churning away in the background with more ideas.
I visited my dentist a few days after I had installed the desktop wallpaper design. The dentist’s office had installed new software from a different company than their old software, because the old software kept crashing. They were still getting used to the new one which was stable but did more things and so they had the problem of clicking through screen after screen and if they missed anything they got an error message and had to start over. Which is what happened when I was checking out. We commiserated about this and compared notes about our frustration with the same experiences and tradeoffs I had previously, as a veterinarian familiar with the advantages and disadvantages of software made for any medical office (including veterinary offices).
There are 6 to 7 main parts for medical office software: appointments, patient information and communication, financial parts, inventory, specific information about drugs or diseases that go on receipts or letters or patient information sheets, a place to store lab tests and x-ray pictures, and sometimes continuing education for doctors and staff. The more things that fancy medical software does, the more complicated it gets, which can slow things down or cause a crash, or make it difficult to train new staff. It can also mean that you have to click through screen after screen after screen to finally get where you want to go.
I started thinking about ways the desktop wallpaper could improve things. For example, a place to store a quick note they don’t want to forget when the front desk is slammed and they don’t really have the time to keep clicking through screens to the place where they should put the information but having to start over because the computer didn’t like their answer or wait for the computer to recover from crashed software. Or a place to put notes about how to do various procedures when you are training a new receptionist. Or a place with a link to go directly to an area without clicking through an excess of intermediate screens (which might need a little programming rather than just a link, but in the programs I worked with, would be possible). Or a place to put a note with a big font about something really critical – a patient you are very concerned about so they need to be seen immediately as soon as they come in, or a critical drug that you are almost out of and so the box from the company needs to be opened as soon as it gets there, not wait until later when that would usually be done.
Although these programs are designed to come up when the computer turns on, the ability to have more than one desktop means you should be able to have a desktop wallpaper desktop as well as the big fancy program desktop. That means one keystroke or key combination to get to the desktop and back rather than going through a whole menu.
Imagine – something making software easier to use, not harder!
Nancy Scanlan, DVM, CVA, MCHC, MS, CPT
Nancy is a retired holistic veterinarian helping older women live a longer, healthier life. Products to make life easier and healthier.
If you’d like to learn more about desktop organizer wallpaper… check out our content creation workshop on this topic.