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vCard: the electronic business card.

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vCard a real electronic business card that allows the exchange of information such as name, surname, address, various telephone numbers, email addresses and web addresses. The format allows the inclusion of graphics and multimedia such as the photo of the holder of the business card, the logo of his company and maybe an audio clip with the exact pronunciation of the names. In the vCard information on the time difference can be inserted to allow contact at times compatible with your business and they can be different languages ​​supported.

Thanks to independence from the operating system, it is possible to have software that manages vCards on any computer or digital device and the interaction between them can obviously be managed via the Internet, via a wired or wireless network.

Wireless information exchangeOne of the most convenient applications is the exchange of vCards between PDAs, computers and cell phones: using a common format you can exchange business cards between devices of different manufacturers simply by "shooting" them via infrared rays or transmitting them via Bluetooth.

An email and browsing toolThe new agenda programs, the Mac OS X Address Books, the Palm Desktop address books or those of the latest e-mail software can already use and manage vCards, but an even more convenient application is the possibility of automatically receive a vCard from a web page with all the data of a company that may be interesting for your business: click on a button and all the related data become part of your personal database.

So vice versa: you can automatically complete any online request form with the correct personal or company information using a more complete and versatile procedure than that found in Internet Explorer for Mac.

Very convenient for mobile phones and telephonyBeyond the implications in the use of a mixed voice-data system in which the vCard could be sent to have complete information about the caller, the most common and immediate use is that of transferring entire directories to and from the mobile phone or memory phones.

Using a standardized format, it is easy to transfer directories with multiple numbers and complex information, ensuring univocal formatting between computer and mobile phone and between different models and brands of phones. No less important can be the use in recognition and authentication systems via Smart Card that would allow an easy preliminary classification.

The standard currently used is called vCard V2.1 While the Internet Mail Consortium is studying the vCard V3.0 format being approved by the IETF.

The applicationsSupport for the vCard format at all levels will be one of the strong points of the Mac OS X version 10.2 but now you can take advantage of the electronic business card in many applications. Among the applications that use vCard we recommend Palm Desktop, the software free that in addition to managing appointments and things to do manages to manage an address book with multiple information interchangeable with vCard. Even Microsoft's Entourage, in the version for Mac OS X is able to easily manage the format.

There are also conversion programs in the vCard format if the software does not support it: see the Eudora vCard Export utility, which can transform Eudora nicknames into real cards readable by MacOSX Address Book, Palm Desktop4 and EntourageX. Another example is the freeware that allows you to import the contacts contained in your Filemaker database and export them to insert them into the iPod: Filemaker to iPod also has the advantage of allowing you to be carefully selected from a very extensive list of contacts.

On our site you can also find how to transmit vCard from Palm Desktop to Ericsson mobiles, how to turn iPod into a vCard reader but the applications are endless and limited only by your imagination.