I cannot believe I have not used this product before last week. Wow, just wow. If you have never heard of Evernote, you are going to want to investigate it very soon. Basically, it’s a free (there is a paid version which has a few more options) organization tool for almost anything you can think of that you can use on your desktop, on the web, and even on your iPhone – and it keeps them all in sync. Anything you upload to this app, from anywhere, is accessible from anywhere else. It is quite amazing. Since I probably cannot do it the explanatory justice it deserves, I am going to lift a bit of text from their site:
Evernote allows you to easily capture information in any environment using whatever device or platform you find most convenient, and makes this information accessible and searchable at any time, from anywhere. Capture everything now so you will be able to find it all later. Things to capture: Tasks and to-dos, Notes and research, Web pages, Whiteboards, Business cards, Scribbles, Snapshots, Wine labels, and even Twitter messages. And then find them all any time across all the computers and devices you use.
It even works with the webcam built into my Macbook – I can have it snap a pic of anything, be it a document, business card, or whatever, and it brings it into Evernote WITH text searchability. For example, I scanned a friend’s business card using the webcam and saved it as an image in Evernote. I then searched all my notebooks in the program for my friend’s name…and sure enough, his business card came up because his name was printed on the front. This could really change the way I interact with my paperwork and assorted clutter around the house. The other day I went around the house grabbing all sorts of things I no longer wanted to keep in physical form, entered them into the program, and then discarded them. One of these days I am going to open the file cabinet and start scanning everything in there to try to go completely paperless. Some people who use the program have bought some high-end, double-sided scanners to make it easy, and I might have to follow suit someday.
Just to be clear, I have no vested stake in this company. In fact, I highly doubt they even know I exist. And on top of that, the product is free – so I don’t even get an affiliate sale from promoting it. I just love it THAT much. I have it installed on both computers and on my iPhone and it works flawlessly. I have saved everything from a random piece of paper with a phone # and name on it all the way up to decent-sized PDFs of invoices for my clients. If you are serious about getting organized and going paperless, Evernote would be a good way to get started. Check it out if you are at all intrigued!