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Outlook or LinkedIN

Funny the things you don’t think about until you hear someone doing it a different way. In this case it was at the December oPASS meeting and Kendal Van Dyke was talking entering business cards he had gathered at PASS and how long it took. I remarked that I’ve stopped doing that in large part, instead looking them up on LinkedIn and adding to my network. I had to go look to be sure, but there is an option in LI to download a vCard from those you’re connected to. I usually only add info to Outlook for people that I’m going to contact on a regular basis, mostly so that I have the auto lookup of their email, and so that I’ll have their info on my phone (sync to Blackberry) if I need it. Trying to keep all my contacts in Outlook seems like more work than needed, no easy process to sync Outlook to LI, and without that the info in Outlook gradually goes stale. Now if there was a utility that just did the sync automatically, would I have that info in Outlook? I see no reason not to then, for me – right now – it’s just being thrifty about how much time I spend managing contacts.

Kendal is looking at card scanners and some other options, hoping he’ll post some thoughts on those soon.


I'm Andy Warren, currently a SQL Server trainer with End to End Training. Over the past few years I've been a developer, DBA, and IT Director. I was one of the original founders of SQLServerCentral.com and helped grow that community from zero to about 300k members before deciding to move on to other ventures.


Posted by Brent Ozar on 30 December 2009

I use Plaxo.com for this - it's killer.  Just add someone's email address to your email book, and it checks with Plaxo.com to see if they're a member.  If so, it sucks all of their contact info in, and keeps it in sync.  When someone updates their profile, your address book is automagically updated.  Works with both Windows and Macs, too.

Posted by kkline on 2 February 2010

This is great info.  I'd always felt like biz cards were useful but, as you point out, a bit of a time suck.  

I'd also been trying to decide if Plaxo or LinkedIN had any advantage one over the other.  Now I'm leaning towards Plaxo, though I use them both.

Thanks for sharing,


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