Steps to a Paperless Home (Part 3)

We’ve talked about Evernote in Part 1. Then in Part 2 I shared how the paperless system was working out for me.  In Part 3 I’m going to talk about scanners.  There are various ways to get your information into Evernote.

  1. Use the Evernote email attached to your account and email yourself things you want to remember.
  2. Subscribe to paperless copies of your bills.  I have done this and actually kind of regret doing it.  I’m finding most bills send you a reminder and you then have to log into the account and download the bill and then send it to Evernote.  I think just getting a paper copy in the mail and scanning it would be more efficient.
  3. Use the camera on your phone.  At first, I thought this was what I was going to do.  Evernote has a camera icon you can click and take a picture of your document.  After trying this I found that not only was it really slow, but it didn’t edit them, so the background was in the picture and it just didn’t look all that great.
  4. Use Scanner Pro – which overcomes the background and crooked pictures.  I actually still use Scanner Pro when a document won’t fit in the scanner. The only downside to this is that it is slow. Not a biggie for a couple of papers, but for a whole home maintenance it would be overwhelming.
  5. Flatbed scanner.  Nope.  Not going there.  Slow.  Super duper slow.  And clunky.
  6. Portable scanner.  I researched these endlessly and ended up with two clear favorites.  I bought one and a friend bought the other.  I have played with both. Both of us are happy and I think depending on your needs either one would meet your needs.  They are Fujitsu ScanSnap ix500 and Doxie Go Plus.

The ScanSnap ix500 shines in its speed.  It is fast. I mean really zooming fast – and it holds 50 pages at one time and does both sides at the same time. This is the one I settled on and I had no trouble setting up the software.  The price tag can be daunting, I ended up finding a gently used one on eBay.    Doxie Go Plus shines in its portability.  It is so small and so adorable!  You can sit and watch tv and feed documents effortlessly.  You do have to individually feed them, but it goes quickly.

Both did a fine job scanning photographs.  I guess if you want super professional quality you might want to go with a flatbed, but for me, it was to have a stack of old photographs in a cupboard or have them digitally available.  It was a no-brainer and I’m glad I scanned them.  I was amazed at how quickly I knocked out a project that I had been putting off for years.  If you have any questions about either, leave me a comment and I’ll try and answer them.

I will tell you that I love my Snapscan it’s quickly becoming one of my favorite household tools, right up there with my Vitamix.  I think I would grab it on my way out the door if the house was on fire!

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