Are Categories Useful? Please Excuse the Construction

I'm bored with the look of my blog again. I'm going to be mucking around a bit over the weekend so don't be alarmed if things look a little off or it doesn't render correctly in firefox for a bit. Yes, I will test it when I'm done. :-)

I also wanted to know if people see value in keeping the list of categories on the side? I find I generally just search to find my old posts. I would still want to categorize my posts, but I'm not sure people care if I leave them on the side or not.  I hardly ever see any refferers from that those sub-pages and want the real estate for more interesting information like "recent comments" or a search box.

Let me know what you think.