I have been using what can only be described as a wonder in the quest for a paperless office.   Here was my problem, I have countless documents that I consume/produce, for example, bills, invoices, receipts, contracts, etc.  All of these documents end up in various file folders, and things are impossible to find.  For example, let’s say I need to find an invoice for a book I ordered.  So starts the fun… “Let’s see, I think I bought that last year,” off to the 2007 Receipts folder.  “Now when did I get that, maybe Q4 or so?”  Flipping through various size receipts, I would look for the receipt.  Of course, if this flipping weren’t bad enough, often times these things get out of order where perhaps a receipt from March is mixed in with the Q3 files.  Even if the files were organized perfectly, it would still be hard to find something specific in just a few seconds. 

There are just so many disadvantages to paper beyond just finding information.  What about a fire?  Now you need to store the file folders in a fireproof cabinet.  Then there is water damage, spills, rips, etc.  Storing documents on a server with backups seemed like the obvious choice to solve all of these problems.  Of course, I don’t want something time consuming or super expensive.  I found my answer with the Fujitsu ScanSnap S510 Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Scanner

This thing is truly amazing.  It’s a sheet-fed scanner that will accept various size documents all in one batch.  So, if you have some letter size sheets, a few receipts, etc, you can pile them all in at once.  The ScanSnap will automatically detect page size for you based on what it scans.  Even better, it will automatically rotate the image if the page wasn’t scanned straight.  Another awesome feature is that it automatically detects content on the backs of pages while it scans and will scan the page as duplex (in one pass).  It’s real snappy at 18ppm.  The real selling feature is that this scanner is truly one-touch.  Put in the page(s) to scan and press one button.  Everything is automatic, and it saves to PDF automatically.  You can configure it to group pages (for documents that should be grouped into one PDF), or you can set it to scan each page as a new PDF file. 

It comes with some cool software as well.  It comes with ABBYY FineReader which will automatically OCR all your scans.  This was a huge selling point.  You can now fully search all the PDFs that you scan.  It comes with a full version of Adobe Acrobat Standard, and it also contains some Fujitsu utilities like an organizer.  They even have software for handling business cards.

One question that is frequently asked is, does it work with Vista x64?  I’m happy to say it does, but not out of the box.  You’ll need to contact Fujitsu after you register the product and they will send you the latest version of their software.  A minor inconvenience, but not that big of a deal in the long run.  I’m using it myself on Vista Business x64 with no problems.

I’d suggest you check out the Fujitsu ScanSnap S510 Instant PDF Sheet-Fed Scanner, I think you’ll fall in love with it as I have.