|Ben’s old Filing System, papers piled in boxes|
- Use a ScanSnap scanner to scan and OCR every piece of paper.
- Upload everything to Evernote, tagging files.
- Keep and file important papers like vehicle title, birth/marriage certificates, etc.
- Shred everything else.
|Teaching Elijah to write code|
-- bwb001 >>>
-- code should be inserted in the ocrFile function after this line:
-- logEvent("OCR file generated.")
tell me to set bwbName to getSpotlightInfo for "kMDItemFSName" from posixFilePath
tell application "Evernote"
set note1 to create note title bwbName from file posixOcrFilePath
open note window with note1
-- bwb001 < <<
This works. Saturday morning I scanned in documents non-stop for about 30 minutes, then I enjoyed the weather outside while my computer spent the next several hours OCRing all of the documents and uploading them to Evernote.
Evernote works well as a document management system. It automatically OCRs any PDF or JPG file that’s not been already (even OCRs handwriting in JPG files) so everything is searcheable. I don’t even bother using intelligent filenames or note titles, I simply search for content within the files. For my filing system I use tags and try to just use the company name. I did upgrade my account to premium ($45/year) because of the volume I scanned. Evernote allows uploading 60MB/month for free so If I had spread it out over a few months I could have done it for free, but I wanted to be done with this project. I scanned, OCRed, and uploaded 749 pages (most double-sided), 374MB to Evernote.
Now all of our files are available from all our devices. iPhone, Android, Mac, and Windows.
Evernote Security, Backup, and Versioning
At some point you have to trust cloud services with your data if you’re going to embrace the future of computing. My rule is that security doesn’t have to be perfect, but that it should cost more for identity thieves or whoever else may hack into my accounts to obtain useful information than the information is worth. One thing to keep in mind is data is not stored encrypted on Evernote so that it can index everything. For sensitive documents and notes I encrypt them before uploading them on Evernote and make sure the note title contains a few key words.
I trust cloud backups for the most part. Most cloud providers can provide better backups and redundancy than I can myself. When they lose data it’s big negative publicity. Evernote handles about 90% of what you would want in a backup. They of course have redundancy and maintain their own backups. If Evernote goes dark I could still use the local cache on my computer, it automatically versions files so if I overwrite something important I can revert. If my computer crashes everything is backed up in the cloud anyway.
Evernote backup weakness
When notes are deleted from Evernote the versioning also goes with them. Once something is deleted from the trash and all of your devices have synchronized there is no way to get it back. Could this happen? Unlikely but yes. A malicious script breaks into either your computer or Evernote account and deletes all your files, and empties the trash. Or you, or someone using your computer selects all notes, deletes them, empties the trash, and ignores the warning that the notes will be gone forever. So as one last step it’s a good idea to backup the Evernote library data and database files (on Mac this is in ~/Library/Application Support/Evernote).
Any decent backup tool will create versioned backups that you can store offsite. I use JungleDisk to backup to Amazon S3, so I just made sure the Evernote folder was in my daily backup list. If for some reason you did something stupid you could always recover from your JungleDisk backup…. so long as Evernote is not the only place you store your S3 encryption keys. |:-)
|Ben & Kris’ new filing system: everything searchable in Evernote|
Now all that’s left is shredding. I have a great little shredder that Bob gave me, but it can only handle a handful of papers before it has to take a rest for a day so it will either take a long time to catch up or I may see if I can find a shredding service or see how much a heavy duty shredder costs.