Tuesday, November 30, 2010

yymmdd - or sorting by date

Ok, this is a weird post, but what can I say. Neal's Notes is about the extraordinary emerging from the ordinary. I "discovered" this trick some time ago and am still amazed that few others use it. So, I'm going to do my part to spread the word.

Do you find your disk directories or folders with scrambled files? Ever have the need to sort them chronologically? Then abandon the old MMDDYYYY format and adopt YYYYMMDD. See, when the month is the first part of the name, it will sort all January, February, March, etc.but if your files bridge years, well, it's a alphanumeric train wreck just waiting to happen. So, move that year up front! YYMMDD will sort chronologically. Amazing, isn't it?

I have newsletters from several years past filed away. How are they named? title_yymmdd. Those rascals just sort right out in order. How about scanned documents with time off requests? empname_yymmdd. Incredible. Excel sheet with a date column. Same thing. List in a Word document? yymmdd and sort those paragraphs!

Yeah, it's weird. But, it's extraordinary!

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