As part of my Minimalism drive, I’ve been looking to making some more space by reducing the size of my PC.
My computers have long been large because I was a gamer. I needed a big rig. But in 2016 I gave up on gaming and wanted to downsize.
So my next PC was more compact, without the massive fans and the graphics card. But after a year I began to realise that even this rig was too big.
So in Nov 2017, I started looking for a replacement. I chose an Intel NUC.
These things are tiny, smaller than an old-school hardback book. I attached it to my still large monitor. Two drives inside, both solid state.
It’s just big enough to hold documents, images, and very few video files. What more storage I need I’ll use external hard drives.
However, a year after buying it I now want to go even smaller, and more importantly, portable.
Of course, some of you might be asking right now, ‘why don’t you just buy a laptop?’
I’m thinking that is perhaps what I should have done. But I do like a large screen to watch videos on. A laptop just doesn’t seem big enough.
Still, with my desire to create more art, write more and spend less time distracted, a smaller screen might be just enough.
With a laptop, I can do this outdoors, where I want to spend more of my time. Sketching, painting, writing in cafés and socialising.
All this downsizing has only been possible because I looked at digital minimalism. I checked what files I needed and deleted a lot that was unnecessary, or I would never use.
With fewer files, smaller storage is possible, and a smaller computer. The amount of space created has been significant, over a terabyte.
Because I no longer need a large desk for my gaming rig. The PC takes up less space. So a smaller desk is possible.
Instead of typical speakers and keyboard, I’ve opted for Bluetooth versions which reduces the necessary space further.
I have now a tiny desk, with a large monitor. It seems the next step downward has to be a laptop.
I might be able to get away with a tablet, thus avoiding the outlay for a laptop. But since it’s Android it doesn’t have some of the functionality you get with Windows. I need it for uploading my writing to WordPress.
I’ll have to see.
But the important point is I’m trying to reduce the amount of screen time and focus what there is mostly on work.
Minimalism is about changing our environment so the work we want and need to do becomes easier.
Downsizing my PC is a way to get more focus, more writing, and less distraction.
I want to avoid trivial pursuits like playing games, mindless web browsing and watching videos. Such habits leave me procrastinating, too distracted to make progress.
That’s the trouble with technology, it’s necessary for work, but also a way to avoid it.
By having a more minimalist PC setup it gives me a better chance of getting my work done.
Having a smaller PC, or even a laptop is part of being a Minimalist in my book. Because one type of overconsumption is saving too much information on our devices, so-called Cyberhoarding.
What good are all these files if I never use them? Photos I never get to see, notes I never read.
They take up space, a sort of digital clutter. Do I need such large storage?
In the spirit of minimalism reducing the number of files I have and the size of my computer makes sense and give me more of the freedom I desire.