How do you minimize disruption from your death?

Perhaps it is just recent events, but I was thinking about death this weekend. (It doesn’t help that I happened to be thinking of my former roommate, who was killed in a terrorist attack three months after his wedding.) “We all have to die some day, if we live long enough.” (Dave Farber)

Via danah boyd, I read this article on what happens to your virtual presence after you die. The obvious question a considerate person should ask: How can I minimize the disruption to family and friends?

This is a very broad topic. A few thoughts:

– Write a memo for your family on “What to do in case I’m incapacitated.” It should include information on how to get into your bank accounts, all of the key passwords in your life, etc. It should also include information on how to terminate your accounts (e.g., your blog, etc.)

– Centralize all of your passwords in one (password-protected) document, and let at least 2 other people know about it. If you have a standardized method for generating random passwords, make sure to share it with at least one other person.

– Play nice.

Your family will be distraught enough about your death; at least it is considerate to make it easier for them to clean up after you.