This holiday season we've noticed that we have been using our iPhone's camera to snap photos of gift ideas and of purchases we've already made in an attempt to get organized. While perusing GeekSugar this morning, we were inspired to use Evernote to take this one step further, alongside consider some other apps to make the holidays easier.
Once we started thinking about the holiday shopping organization problem as something that could be alleviated with tech, solutions began to present themselves, both in applications that we have been using for a long time (for non holiday shopping purposes) and new applications specifically designed for this purpose:
Evernote helps keep track of receipts accrued in holiday shopping. Evernote is a great organization tool for your phone (iPhone, PalmPre, & Blackberry) and computer. Evernote allows you to not only jot down text notes, clip a web page, and grab a screenshot, but also, like GeekSugar highlighted, take images. The great thing about Evernote is everything you capture is automatically processed, indexed, and made searchable. It's easy to tag receipts and gift ideas and then create a notebook specifically for purchases already made and ideas for future purchases.
Bento 3 is an application that we have been using for both work and home purposes for some time. Now with an iPhone app using Bento has never been easier or more convenient. Bento is a personal database software, that like Evernote allows for better cataloging and organization of everything from inventory to contacts to holiday shopping. One of the features that we love about Bento is how well it works with our other applications on my Mac. Bento plays well with iLife and iWork (as well as Excel files) allowing us to seamlessly integrate data and images from multiple sources on my computer. We can see the possibilities of using Bento to create a shopping list that will intelligently keep ourselves aware of our spending by using handy formulas from Numbers.
Better Christmas List by Andrew Grant helps keep your shopping on track and on budget while shopping. While not being a great application for collecting gift ideas from various sources, Better Christmas List with it's easy to use user interface, is perfect for tracking your spending budget at a glance.
Santa's List by Vurgood Applications allows you to not only create shopping lists and track your per person budgets it also includes the ability to integrate photos into the shopping list. While not as easy to see your spending at a glance like with Better Christmas List, we love that Santa's List allows for the integration of photos both in the shopping and in the recipient (not that we would forget what Mom looks like) list.
What do you think? Are you using applications this year to assist in your holiday shopping?