My tagging system grew from my old hierarchical filesystem. Currently I have three folders in my Documents folder
- Action - Stuff I need to deal with
- Working - Stuff I am dealing with
- Archive - Stuff I’m no longer dealing with, but want to keep anyway.
Inside each folder are all my files, no more nested folders. My Archive folder is fairly good sized. Before I had a filesystem that looked more like this:
- bank 1
- bank 2
- Insurance company
- Another Project
You get the picture. The thing is, sometimes things should go in two folders, like insurance statements, should those go under “insurance” or under “Statement/Insurance”? I finally got tired of the endlessly recursive hierarchy and converted all the folder names to tags.
So, now I’ve got tag names like “Finance”, “Bills”, & “Water” applied to my scanned water bill, and “Finance”, “Insurance”, “Statements”, & “Life” applied to my life insurance statement. Everything gets tagged and filed into the Archive folder by Hazel after scanning and OCR.
Now it’s no big deal if a particular file should exist in two places because those places are just tags, and I can apply as many tags as I want. Search works great for finding files, but so does the Finder’s “Tags” section in the sidebar. Combining the two I can always find exactly what I need.
One place to look, one place to backup, one place to file everything that I want to keep.