[TechTip] In Search Of ... My Desk

Yes, it's the future; no, we don't yet have the paperless office. (Indeed, if you had a snapshot of the room in which I'm writing this, the idea of the paperless office would make a Chicago Cubs 2012 World Series win seem nearly inevitable.)

But, we can get closer. Desktop scanners have come a long way—from the dinosaurs that roamed the 1990s all the way down to the fantastic little NeatDesk scanner that I've just recently added to the menagerie I call a desk. With separate slots for documents (up to 15 pages at a time), receipts and cards, the scanner makes fast work (and it really is fast) of scanning all of that paper you'll find in your might-eventually-be-paperless office.

While the scanner is nice (note that scan quality is middle-of-the-road, and you won't want to use it for photo-quality images), the real magic happens with the NeatWorks software, which accepts all those scanned pages, turns them into PDFs, merges them together into multi-page documents or exports them into other formats. You can manipulate, clean up, rotate and store your documents (along with notes and keywords) like email messages for easy retrieval; text-recognition even makes some scanned documents searchable.

Priced around $400 (and available every so often on Woot.com for much less), the NeatDesk is a bit of an investment—but it's worth every sheet of paper it eventually lets you shred.


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