Organising ScanSnap output
November 11, 2012 2:48 PM   Subscribe

Scansnap users - details please on how you organise scanned documents ?

I'm interested in getting a scanner and scanning incoming paper so that I no longer have to think about where to put it - and where I've put it.

Based on other mefi posts I'm interested in Fujitsu Scansnap (although I'm not quite sure which one - why buy, say, an 1100 over a 1500 ?)

What I really want is details on is how the accompanying software works (or how other software you might use with it works).

I understand you put stuff on the scanner and it gets scanned but what then ? Does each set of documents produce one PDF ? Or each page produce one PDF ? Neither seems ideal ? How do I tag/file the resulting documents so that I can find them later (I understand there's some sort of OCR thing bundled but I'm interested in being able to categorise the documents myself).

If it matters this is for Windows users
posted by southof40 to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I use a Doxie scanner instead of a Scansnap, but once everything is scanned, I file it to Evernote, which does OCR and files everything away and is wonderfully searchable.
posted by 4ster at 2:50 PM on November 11, 2012

I use ScanSnap and it saves directly to Evernote. Brilliant.
posted by dfriedman at 2:53 PM on November 11, 2012

I have a Scansnap s1300i, with the bundled OCR. It's pretty automatic, and to be honest 95% of the benefit is being able to scan and trash things immediately -- most of the time, I actually don't need the result.

But it OCR's immediately, and if you are able to feed multiple pages in with a single button press, then it ends up in a single pdf. I haven't had great luck with the feeder, so just try to catch it in the pause. If I don't, no biggie. I take all the pdf results from the session, right click -> send to Evernote. Once there, I might join pdfs if they're supposed to be the same document. It's available for full-text search because of the OCR.

At that point, in Evernote, you can come up with your tagging scheme, but I haven't really needed to yet. I added a couple things, like "bills" or "work", but if you want you could go to town pretty easily.
posted by tintexas at 2:58 PM on November 11, 2012

I've got a ScanSnap s1500, and generally just tell it to save the PDF to one of two destination folders.
posted by thomas j wise at 3:39 PM on November 11, 2012

I'm another Evernote user. I pay for a premium subscription to use their OCR service to make my scanned documents searchable.
posted by ethidda at 3:41 PM on November 11, 2012

Another vote for ScanSnap + Evernote + cross-cut shredder. We used to go overboard on sorting and cataloging all of the scans, but more recently I've been depending on the ability of full text search and OCR to find things. So far it has never let me down.

The s1300 scanner is pretty reliable although it does have problems feeding folded papers sometimes. For an initial digital conversion I wish we had used the larger model with a better ADF, but now that it is just a few documents per week the smaller scanner is perfect and takes up far less desk space.

Now if someone could come up with a way to track finances in Evernote with the scanned bills and invoices...
posted by autopilot at 4:04 PM on November 11, 2012

I'm a 1300 w/ Paperless user, but I don't think Paperless has a Windows version
posted by phearlez at 5:23 PM on November 11, 2012

I have a 1300. The software supports multiple scanning profiles, so I set up one that takes everything I scan in a batch and dumps it into one PDF, and another that does 1 PDF per page. Depending on what I'm scanning, I select the appropriate profile. Splitting PDFs up is fairly easy (at least in the software I'm using [DevonThink Pro Office] but since I'm on the Mac side, I can only guess that it's as easy on Windows.

The other neat trick the Scansnap software supports is keywording based on what you highlight on the paper before scanning it. Depending on what you're working with, this could help a lot with automating the categorization process.
posted by neilbert at 8:51 PM on November 11, 2012

I use an S1300i with just the ScanSnap software.

As someone else mentioned, it produces one PDF per scanned batch, so I scan one document at a time.

Routine goes like this: Put in document, press button on scanner, ScanSnap does its work. Dialog comes up on my Mac asking whether I want to feed it more pages for the same document, or if I want to { Save, Email, etc } the document. I always click "Save", give it a sensible name, and dump it into one folder that acts like an "Scanned stuff inbox". I regularly sort stuff from that folder into folders for rough categories (Bank statements, Utility bills, Medical, etc.)

I'm not sure if the scanning can be hands-free, i.e. if you can set it up to autosave each batch and just let you move on to scanning the next one without interacting on your computer.
posted by mvd at 9:56 PM on November 11, 2012

I found the blog DocumentSnap yesterday, it seems to cover what you want. He also has some ebooks available which go into more detail.
posted by devnull at 7:42 AM on November 12, 2012

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