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Friday, June 03, 2005

The Cardster PDA

Here's my contribution to the whole GTD card craze, I'm just not a huge fan of the 3x5 size. It's just big enough that it bugs me. I do understand the convenience and writing area issues, but for me I prefer a smaller form-factor "device".

I use 2x3.5 inch business card stock for my cards. My writing is fairly clear, so I don't have a hard time with less space, and they're still readable at a glance. Besides the obvious size difference, there are a number of other advantages:

1. They're cheap to buy, and even cheaper to steal. Well, not steal really, I can't think of many businesses that would mind more people picking up their business cards. Most card backs are blank and give you all the functionality you need. So if you run out of cards, run in to a hotel or something similar, and you're back on track. If you don't feel too guilty, you can grab a pen in most places as well.

2. They work well when stacked with IDs and bank cards. If they're clipped on top of your license and a few more cards below, you've got a decent writing surface at all times. Just put something smooth like a license just below your business cards and it works great.

3. If you want to integrate your collection with a system on your computer, there are numerous business card scanners that make it much simpler than a flatbed, and a lot of them are USB powered so you can keep them easily on the road. I use the $50 Visioneer CardReader 100. Just feed them in and recycle.

So it's smaller than the Hipster, and cheaper than the Cheapster. Isn't that enough? I've included a PDF that should work for printing on most pre-perforated card stock, or you can cut it yourself. Thanks to Spot Cost, a pretty good price comparison site, for hosting the PDF for me.

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» At 10:16 AM, Blogger j.michael said...

I've always felt the same way about the 3x5 cards, so I took to cutting them in half (top to bottom). It makes for some uneven edges, but overall it's a fairly good solution to reducing the size of the large 3x5s. It also still allows for colored cards to act as deviders.

» At 11:15 AM, Blogger gfroese said...

I also cut down my 3x5's to fit into my billfold, along with a sturdy pen refill that fits just right in there making my hipster a transparent piece of my billfold

» At 12:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This brings to mind something that a lot of my friends carried around in college for memorizing bible verses.

Little vinyl wallets that were the perfect size for business cards. I was able to find them online here:

http://www.navpress.com/Store/Product/9900730100.html

Might help keep your cardster organized. If I remember correctly, they had 3 pockets. 2 inside on either side of the fold and another one (a clear one) on the outside)

» At 1:50 PM, Blogger Christopher Peterson said...

I like the 3x5 card size. My handwriting is big and messy, so I need more writing space than a business card. Plus 3x5 cards fit in my back pocket perfectly!

» At 7:40 AM, Anonymous matt petty said...

Good idea - I thought of that too, when confronted with a fresh supply of card stock...

http://www.petty.me.uk/cgi/blosxom.cgi/weblog/hipster_pda_mini.html

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