Sassafras4u: Science Article SpreadSheets And Fast Reference Archive System

Refinding Information

Thanks to efficient desktop search tools like the Mac’s Spotlight, shown below, retrieving my archived information is quick and convenient.

Even 15 years ago, using Mac OS 7, I was enjoying using the search engine Grapple to quickly find text files archived on my hard drive.

Of course, I can still use an Internet search engine to search the entire Web but I have the confidence of already knowing that articles I’ve stored in my own archive as text files are of interest to me and will be directly relevant to my current search.

The screenshot below shows the result of a Spotlight search. I have selected the most recent articles (highlighted in blue).


Typing Command-O (Open) immediately opens the selected text files in TextEdit (below) so that I can quickly find the particular article I’m searching for—or peruse all of them, if I wish.

The files can also be dragged individually from the Spotlight window above to Tofu for easier and faster reading, making information retrieval from my personal archive quick, easy and convenient.

Command-Clicking on the TextEdit title (“12” in the example below), and going up one level in the heirarchy that is thus revealed, will open the folder containing that file, with the file already conveniently highlighted.


For Example...

I came across this article (shown previewed at left in MacGizmo) on May 28, 2007 (file 36 on the spreadsheet and 36.txt in the text-file archive for May 28).

I remembered having read something about it a while ago.

In less than a minute, Spotlight easily located the article that I had remembered saving (below), from September 9, 2006.


I wondered whether the September 9, 2006, article was still posted online on Yahoo.

I tried the URL and found that it had, in fact, been removed, which, as I mentioned elsewhere, often happens with news items.

This, then, clearly demonstrates the value of maintaining your own personal archive.

To download these two articles as text files (Zip archive “”) to read them in full yourself, please click here.

The article at right is named 1(9-10-06).txt.