Any ideas on how to teach computer users about file management?

file cabinets
Creative Commons License photo credit: redjar

Over the 12+ years that I have been traveling to computer users homes and offices, I estimate that at least 70% of them have zero to very little knowledge about file management. File management includes knowing how to use folders and files and the difference between them. Programs DO NOT contain or house files and folders…they create the data and store them in a folder.

I’ve used the filing cabinet analogy, the desk analogy, the cooking analogy, and others, but none seem to really make sense. And without the solid knowledge of what a file and folder is and how they relate to drives, computer users falter with backup.

In my opinion, I think
computer users would be better off working with online applications like Zoho, Google Docs, Shutterfly, Picnik and more because then there is no worry about where the data exists…it will be ‘in the program’. Plus, online applications are available anywhere and backed up by the provider.

What do you think?

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