analytical Q May-Aug 2000 Sept-Dec 2000 Contact Discussion

The Diary
Anne Ku

16 December 2000 Saturday






FINALLY the dreaded task is almost over. For months I've been accumulating business cards collected from conferences, meetings, airplanes, and parties. They sat on top of each other, by the occasion of our acquaintance.

For months I comtemplated how to sort these cards. Alphabetical order? by name or company? first name or last? By occasion? Or by category, e.g. bank, consultant, vendor, etc? By country?

I had been wanting to test the new card reader. But the fear of more learning and more work prevented me from embracing this new scanning technology. Then I had a brilliant idea yesterday. Why not layout my cards on my scanner and scan them as GIF files into the password-protected area of my website? That way, I can fetch these contacts whenever and wherever I am in the world.

Or should I just type the business category, name, company, email address, and phone number into an excel spreadsheet? I can decide how I want to sort or filter them later.

I left the task until almost sundown before a sense of urgency struck me. I sat on the bar stool and laid out my cards on the kitchen counter almost instinctively. As if playing with a jigsaw puzzle, I grouped the cards according to their similarity: friends/family, colleagues, almost colleagues, banks, consultants, publishers, IT vendors, energy companies, risk management advisors/systems, exchanges, and a surprisingly small OTHER category which contained acquaintances that I wouldn't call friends but hardly deserve a category of their own.

Now the question is - should I scan them or type them into my computer?

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