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I wrote last year about a theory I had, namely that digitization was enabling a more minimalist lifestyle for people who wouldn’t otherwise be minimalist. I could still have my books, music and movies, but they wouldn’t take up space anymore.

Well, I’m doing my annual March break spring cleaning this week, and I’ve found that a recent addition to my tech arsenal has enabled me to take it one step further.

The tool? An iPhone 5 with a scanner-quality built-in camera, and the free Evernote app

Evernote is my brilliant new discovery, and to my delight, I just found a ‘doc scanner’ mode that renders a remarkably clear picture, even for text. I’d previously found the iPhone’s built-in camera sufficient for capturing photographs, but for anything with text, it just wasn’t clear enough. I’m not sure what Evernote is doing that improves it so much, but I’m very happy with what I’m seeing.

So, what has this magical tool allowed me to throw in the ‘get rid of’ box?

1. A flatbed scanner. This was taking up space on the desk of the Beloved because there was nowhere else to put it, so he was very happy to see this go.

2. A binder full of workout routines I have saved over the years from various fitness magazines. Thanks to Evernote, not only can I scan them for use when traveling, but I can also sort and tag them, too.

3. On a related note, I also have a large folder of rotation calendars that came with various workout DVDs. I suppose those can go, too.

4. A box full of memorabilia from my childhood, such as artwork, bat mitzvah invitations and so on. I’ve scanned these to add to a digital scrapbook I’m making of all sorts of childhood goodies I recently found.

5. Another box full of photo albums. I’ll keep them until I see how good the book turns out to me, but if it turns out as I expect, I will pitch the source material. I’m still on the fence about my high school yearbooks. I think I may be sorry if I pitch those. But if I add that to the scrapbook too, that’s another box gone.

So, yay for technology! It feels good to clear out some clutter and free some space for other things. Happy spring break!

 
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