Old-fashioned business cards are still exchanged at meetings and conferences but stack up until the information is transferred to iPhones, Blackberries, mobile devices, or other means of storing the information, digital or otherwise. Now a couple new methods streamline the process, making the contacts easily accessible.
One device, NeatDesk, a high-speed scanner that turns paper data into digital format, imports the card information into an electronic address book and is exportable to handheld devices. A slotted tray holds 10 cards at a time and can process 70 in 10 minutes.
An Innovations 2009 honoree for the Design and Engineering Award from the Consumer Electronics Association, released a version compatible with Mac products last month to complement the PC.
Originally known as NeatReceipts, the company focused on streamlining expense reports and receipts for tax files, and expanded its scanner to cover a range of systems to manage all paper clutter for home or business. The gadget digitizes material importable to financial spreadsheets, such as Excel.
Also, various sized paper, double-sided, color and black/white can be transferred, organized into a searchable "library," stored and searchable by keywords. The software creates PDFs, allows information to be edited and exported. The cost is now reduced to $400 US dollars. www.neatco.com/products/neatdesk
Another way to file business cards is to take a digital image with a camera or mobile phone and upload the photos onto a free online service called Evernote. It also stores images of notes, audios, documents, and white boards, as well as web pages, text messages, and tweets from twitter.
With Evernote digital information is also organized and searchable, with access to the Internet, the information is then available on computer, hand-held devices or a cloud network.