Addresses

Monday 26 December 2005

Every year about this time, we get around to sending out holiday cards, and every year, I wonder the same thing: How come I don’t have a good solution to keeping all these addresses on file so I can just print up a bunch of labels? Every year I scrounge around for people’s addresses, and wonder who I sent cards to last year, and poke around at various possibilities for personal databases of mailing addresses. Surely this is a solved problem? It seems like I’ve got to have something right at my fingertips that’s perfect for this. I just don’t know what it is...

Comments

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I have the same problem when I have to invite friends to a party, dinner, rafting trip, skiing trip. I need to start adding labels to the contacts (e.g. "good party goer", "skier", "outdoor person", "concert goer", "relative", "christmas card recipient") so that I can send mass e-mails to all skiers, or to all concert goers I know. Of course, each person would have multiple labels.
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You know what's "at your fingertips?" It is called the address book and a pen. It is what I have used every year when I write out our address cards. It is great this year that I have found a solution that has made this so much easier for me: have you do it!
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There's an interesting looking microformat for this: http://microformats.org/wiki/hcard

A quick microformat writer would be neat. I imagine it as a set of lightly constrained and simple editors that you could invoke to write to... something. Maybe just dump each one into a big directory on WebDAV, and expect other software to index it.
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This isn't as sexy as Ian's suggestion, but a spreadsheet in Open Office, mail merge, and Avery labels works well for us. I've got to look into the microformat thing....
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Sha has a piece of paper with all the names and addresses and received/sent checkboxes for each year. Low-tech, but it works...for her...
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My wife uses a customized notes db!

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