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Old 09-27-2019, 01:09 PM
 
Location: SW US
2,280 posts, read 2,097,521 times
Reputation: 3968

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrkliny View Post
I understand the reluctance. Before I retired I still had textbooks in calculus and physics from my college years. Eventually all of them went in the trash. I have not needed or missed them since. I also tossed out years and years of a professional journal. At one time they would have been donated to a library. The internet has made that sort of thing obsolete.

I took loads of college and grad school books to Goodwill. They took all of them. I'd like to think someone will be able to use them but maybe not.
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Old 09-27-2019, 04:12 PM
 
2,829 posts, read 776,921 times
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While I disposed of academic books & papers a long time ago, there is one book I wish I had kept.

It was an econ textbook - nothing special - except for one "inside joke" it contained.

In that era, Zvi Griliches was an important economist at Harvard. He was a frequent reviewer of college text books - and the common wisdom was he just flipped to the index in the back to see how many times he himself (Zvi Griliches) was listed. If he was referenced many times inside the book, the book received a stellar review. If he was referenced only few times - or none at all - it received a poor review.

In this particular economics text book, in the index, Zvi Griliches was referenced just one time. A single entry. What page? Page 640 (or whatever it was). So, you'd flip inside the book looking for page 640 to see what it said about Zvi Griliches.

Page 640 was the page inside the index. It was completely self referential: Zvi Griliches was listed just once, referring to the page of the index where he himself was listed. (Hope this makes sense).

This particular textbook was fun just for that inside joke. Needless to say, Zvi Griliches did not give the book a good review.
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Old 09-27-2019, 04:21 PM
 
Location: The beautiful Rogue Valley, Oregon
7,468 posts, read 15,595,732 times
Reputation: 9780
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondebaerde View Post
Hell I'm ten years away from that, and I feel the pull/pain now. Was just looking at my bookshelf yesterday evening: it's mostly decorative. I haven't pulled Groundwater and Wells, best book on the subject ever, in 10 years. Principles of Physics (ditto), 15 years. Optical Mineralogy, 25 years. All brilliant works and well worth every cent at the time. I just about wore out the pages on those three, I have tons of yellow notes bulging out each, I see. Ah, pre-Internet!
Lol, optical mineralogy and crystallography books were the first ones I chucked. I still have Groundwater and Wells. I still have my Brunton (it's engraved from my school, I got it as an award!) and all my field method books.
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Old 09-27-2019, 04:42 PM
 
4,448 posts, read 1,793,753 times
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"Am I alone in this reluctance?"

no.

we still have "stuff" we hang on to.
but, we take time every year
(usually February when the weather's bad)
to make 3 "piles of stuff":
1. trash.
2. donate.
3. keep.

we continue to see the same items in the "keep" pile, but we continue to keep them.
we are obviously reluctant since it is an every year thing. industrious folks would
have "cleaned house" years ago.
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Old 09-27-2019, 05:56 PM
 
872 posts, read 259,600 times
Reputation: 3007
Quote:
Originally Posted by turkeydance View Post
"Am I alone in this reluctance?"
no.
we still have "stuff" we hang on to.
but, we take time every year
(usually February when the weather's bad)
to make 3 "piles of stuff":
1. trash.
2. donate.
3. keep.
we continue to see the same items in the "keep" pile, but we continue to keep them.
we are obviously reluctant since it is an every year thing. industrious folks would
have "cleaned house" years ago.
If the same items keep falling into the "Keep" pile, that's a pretty good clue you're sentimentally attached to them. So why not keep them? Unless you're moving into a pup tent, may as well keep things you like. I myself still have all of my Dad's tools for building bowling alleys (electric planers, screw guns, drills, etc., way more stuff than I will EVER used doing "handyman" type stuff. I hate to give this stuff away for pennies on the dollar (or just junk them), the Old Man took great reverence in the things he used to make a living. Plus all of my mechanic's tools! Certainly don't need two sets of everything anymore. I sure do wish it were easier to sell this type of stuff. If I knew a young guy who was just starting out in the field, I'd give him a package deal, "cheap", but I don't. I've heard of "Tool Libraries", where they loan out tools to people who cannot afford their own. Maybe if I land in a small town somewhere that has one, who knows.
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Old 09-28-2019, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Texas Hill Country
10,418 posts, read 5,727,133 times
Reputation: 8706
I have started in the past years of getting rid of old school notes since I have not touched them in years. About what is stopping me from batch dumping is that they come from an era when we used SSN as identification. Hence, for safety sake, they need to be done page by page and I am not in a real hurry to do that task.


Books are a little bit different in that they can be referenced if need be, especially in this backwoods location to the Net. Of course, the other thing about it is that as a "reader", my memory tells me which book I saw it in, even decades after the fact.



So, it varies.
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Old 09-28-2019, 02:20 PM
 
Location: Surf City, NC
373 posts, read 563,556 times
Reputation: 987
I'm a retired architect. I cheerfully dispensed with my textbooks and manuals a few years after I graduated. Books are horribly heavy to move or store and most were already out-of-date. One of my bosses used to joke that his steel manual was so old they listed weights in buffalo hides. Some people have romantic attachments to books, I do not. In the years before I retired I worked to scan and digitize the books I had collected that I wanted to keep and then disposed of the hard copies. It is a relief, I don't miss the dust collectors. I did keep a few, though. I have a near-antique copy of "Architectural Graphic Standards." I enjoy looking at the beautiful, pre-computer graphics, hand-drawn and lettered illustrations. I was never a T-square virtuoso, but I appreciate the masters' works.
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Old 09-28-2019, 04:33 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
12,700 posts, read 12,858,112 times
Reputation: 20376
Quote:
Originally Posted by k7baixo View Post
My wife and I attempt to "clean like we died" every couple of years. Anything that we haven't touched in the last year is subject to being sold, donated or trashed unless there's a strong sentimental value. Work-related stuff is the first to go. Work does not define me - it's always been simply an means to an end - living a good, decent, enjoyable life. There are also hobby items that I plan to use more heavily once retired. Those items are retained.
We have the same rule: If you haven't touched it in a year, you don't need it. We eliminated over 150' of shelved books, obsolete electronics, obsolete cameras, obsolete software, ratty lawn furniture, anything that doesn't work any more, silverware, dishes, furniture, antiques, old clothes, and anything that was sitting on the floor or the back of a closet.

I have kept all my tools, but I built a 36 x 60 shop to keep them in, and I hobby out there a lot. The line between a project and a pile of junk is if I am actively working on it.

We rarely buy books, but keep a huge library on a couple of Kindles.

Our house is only 1700 square feet, and we don't want it to be cluttered. for the last five years we have had a rule that if we buy something, we have to dispose of something. Buy a new winter coat? The old winter coat has to go to Salvation Army.

My next project is to go through the kitchen and throw out all the cookware we don't use anymore.
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Old 09-28-2019, 04:37 PM
 
Location: planet earth
5,404 posts, read 2,106,325 times
Reputation: 12074
Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW-type-gal View Post
I did keep the technical journals and meeting proceedings that I am published in, lol. Not throwing those out.

My FIL was a university professor in the 50s, 60s and 70s and did a bunch of programming on punch cards for statistical analysis. He keep all the punch cards and the family has been using them for book marks, card house building and other various and sundry uses ever since. We got two boxes of them when he died and haven't gone through them all yet.
Very creative and respectful.

I do remember those cards!
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Old 09-28-2019, 05:17 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
12,700 posts, read 12,858,112 times
Reputation: 20376
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrkliny View Post
I understand the reluctance. Before I retired I still had textbooks in calculus and physics from my college years. Eventually all of them went in the trash. I have not needed or missed them since. I also tossed out years and years of a professional journal. At one time they would have been donated to a library. The internet has made that sort of thing obsolete.
I kept my college physics text around for years, until it got so obsolete it was laughable. Back then they still thought muons were hadrons. Surprise!
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