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banquo's_bumble_puppy
2004-Dec-02, 12:38 PM
Ever think there will be a day that the paperless office will come into being? Lots of talk over the last several decades...seems to be just as much if not more paper than ever.

banquo's_bumble_puppy
2004-Dec-02, 12:40 PM
http://www.writersblock.ca/summer1995/techno.htm

pghnative
2004-Dec-02, 03:09 PM
I do a lot of work on computers, but I personally cannot stand trying to edit mult-page documents from a screen. I need to print and edit from the hard copy (spotted owls be darned) to be effective.

This reminds me of a Dilbert cartoon where the office goes paperless. The boss's meeting is short because he has no agenda in front of him, so he mindlessly states that "productivity is up ..... uhhh, 10%" since going paperless. The last frame shows the workers rolling up their sleeves (as if for a fight) as the manager announces "Now about the restroom situation..." :D :D

teddyv
2004-Dec-02, 03:16 PM
I do a lot of work on computers, but I personally cannot stand trying to edit mult-page documents from a screen. I need to print and edit from the hard copy (spotted owls be darned) to be effective.

Reminds me of a bumper sticker: Save a tree, wipe your *** with a spotted owl.

Maksutov
2004-Dec-02, 03:50 PM
That should work quite well, considering the big, bidet eyes those birds have. :D

Maksutov
2004-Dec-02, 03:59 PM
Ever try to read an "E" blueprint on a computer screen? There are times where one has to be able to see the entire document in order to get a handle on the design, and CRTs don't cut it. Of course there's always projection, but try to do that at your desk! :roll:

zebo-the-fat
2004-Dec-02, 04:15 PM
If the paperless office arrives I'm out of a job! :cry:

ToSeek
2004-Dec-02, 04:47 PM
I wouldn't call my office "paperless," but we certainly use a lot less than we used to. A lot more gets done electronically and through email. Some years ago we were repeatedly being admonished not to use the photocopiers so much. Now I go to the copier, and I have to wait for it to warm up before I can use it. That never used to happen!

iFire
2004-Dec-02, 05:32 PM
My school is rapidly moving toward a paperless environment. All students have laptops, many teachers give assignments and recieve them through email. Ever classroom has a SMART board. (A combination of a projecter screen and a touch screen.) Tests and quizzes can be administered through the Microsoft Class Server (the devil, but cool nonetheless). Every student has a school eMail address. I am in American History class watching a video that my teacher has downloaded from some education website. Sure its not a paperless office but its close enough.

Humphrey
2004-Dec-02, 05:34 PM
To ensure a truely paperless office pleae fill out forms A-305 to Q-521 yearly with hard copy backups of all transactions attached.




Edit: Seriuously, I think the invention of the computer and computer hacker hacker/virus prety much eliminated the paperless office. To ensure reliability incase of an attack ro hardware crsh, you have to have paper backups.

jt-3d
2004-Dec-02, 05:49 PM
Don't even get me started on this paperless company stuff. Suffice to say, I don't believe.

Demigrog
2004-Dec-02, 05:56 PM
Paperless is never going to happen. Too many people (me included) prefer paper for jotting notes, brainstorming, reading large documents, etc.

One of the biggest requirements of the engineering tool I work on is printing, and somehow I always get stuck with implementing it. Some of the most passionate arguments I've ever heard occurred over printing features. I frequently have to print out 3000 page 11x17 documents to take to meetings just so people can argue over font sizes. Fortunately we also sell paper mill controls.

TriangleMan
2004-Dec-02, 06:00 PM
I once worked in an accounting firm that tried to move to paperless files but we switched back after about 6 months - too many situations were occurring where hardcopy was needed.

Moose
2004-Dec-02, 06:12 PM
Every now and again, there's talk of making our department paperless. And of course everybody prints out that email/document so they can read through the proposal.

I have a three-inch stack of paper on my writing desk. Hand-delivered hard copies of the things people have already sent me by email.

ToSeek
2004-Dec-02, 06:18 PM
Come to think of it, my orthodontist's office is trying to go (mostly) paperless. Instead of patient files, they have a networked laptop PC at every chair.

Humphrey
2004-Dec-02, 06:20 PM
I think a paperless office is impossible. Computers are just too unreliable to have to rely on them for keeping records.

CTM VT 2K
2004-Dec-02, 06:26 PM
I think a paperless office is impossible. Computers are just too unreliable to have to rely on them for keeping records.

Agreed. In my office, I host some shared files on my workstation (just within my section). When BABB got hacked last week, I got nailed unaware, and they had to take my system off the network to clean and fix it. For the time where the system was unavailable, so too were the shared files (except month old back-ups), meaning we had to work hard to play catch up with old data, and then re-integrate when the system got back a couple days later. Our most important files are also kept in a hard-copy, so we'll always have something.

iFire
2004-Dec-02, 07:35 PM
Paperless environments will happen someday. Probably not in most people's lifetimes though. I mean, we are witnessing the very beginning of paperless environments now, but in like a hundred years paper will be unheard of. That is my thought on it.

Gramma loreto
2004-Dec-02, 07:56 PM
My federal government office is paperless...and I have reams of printed documentation to prove it. ;) Our administrative officer drives me nuts. She's paper-bound old school and frequently brings me a print out of an e-mail, or some such, that she wants me to read...something I'll likely read once and discard. Just forward the bloody thing!

IMO, PCs will never enable a "paperless" office, as long as paper is around to write/print on. In today's environment, I think the best we can achieve is a "paper-efficient" or "paper-optimized" office. People will always want something they can touch, fondle, perhaps fold, and put in their pocket. The paperless office won't exist until paper itself becomes obsolete as a practical and cheap medium for office communication.

Pardon a Star Trek moment here but I'm reminded of the "PADD" devices used on the show. Scene: the Bridge. Enter: a nameless yeoman with some report for the Captain to sign. (Nevermind that having a person personally deliver an electronic document instead of forwarding it though the network didn't make much sense.) Today's PDAs and tablet PCs may be a baby step in that direction but they've a long way to go in utility, durability, size, and cost.

SeanF
2004-Dec-02, 08:01 PM
Pardon a Star Trek moment here but I'm reminded of the "PADD" devices used on the show. Scene: the Bridge. Enter: a nameless yeoman with some report for the Captain to sign. (Nevermind that having a person personally deliver an electronic document instead of forwarding it though the network didn't make much sense.) Today's PDAs and tablet PCs may be a baby step in that direction but they've a long way to go in utility, durability, size, and cost.
Uh . . . PDAs have already beat the PADDs on the original series in terms of size. And utility, I'd imagine, since about all we ever saw them used for was getting the Captain's signature.

Now, tricorders . . . I want me one of them puppies! :D

jfribrg
2004-Dec-03, 08:48 PM
I remember that for years, various "visionaries" were predicting that all the millions of computers would be interconnected. It sounded interesting and all that, but I didn't see the groundwork being laid for this to happen. Then in the early 90's, suddenly the internet became accessible to the masses and these predictions came true. It seemed that the various pre-requisites were that the hardware had to be cheap enough and fast enough, communication software had to mature to the point of being easy and reliable, and there had to be a reason for people to want to connect. All of this was available before the early 90's, but wasn't widely used outside academia. Finally, the pieces were all in place and the conversion was relatively fast. It is only in retrospect that we can say that the pieces were in place. I suspect that something similar may happen with the "paperless" office. I don't think that it will ever be a completely paperless business environment, but as time goes on, hardware and software to support a paperless office will mature and eventually the cost savings will outweigh the inertia of the status quo and the volume of paper will diminish drastically.

Krevel
2004-Dec-03, 09:01 PM
I've heard that Bill Gates will sometimes go into the office copy room and throw a tantrum about how much paper is being used! Maybe just a rumor, but it's fun to think about. :P

AliCali
2004-Dec-04, 08:21 AM
No one will be completely paperless, but the amount of paper will drop dramatically. Especially when more people learn to use Excel, Word, Acrobat, and other useful programs to analyze data.

In all my jobs, we didn't go paperless, but we used a lot less paper. I used to work for a music company, and every month, there would be a 5,000 page report that detailed inventory. A copy of the report was also saved in the network. I squashed the printing, and just wrote an Excel Macro that converted the report into a workable spreadsheet. This made the analysis more efficient and information easier to find and summarize.

This strategy translated to other areas. Used to be, if you wanted information, you'd print a report. If you wanted the data summarized a different way, you'd print another report. Now, you print one big report to a text file, then use Excel to open and format the report. Not only does it save paper, but once it's in Excel, you can summarize it any way you want so you don't have to keep printing reports. What a time saver!

I now work in the tax department for a CPA firm. They are going more paperless. Starting in 2003, all the working papers (W-2s, 1099s, etc.) and our copies of the tax return are kept in PDF files. We electronically file where we can. We still use quite a bit of paper, but the output has dropped dramatically. Plus, the handling of files is easier. If I need a client's file, I don't have to go to the file room or look in everyone's office for the actual file. I just go online to our storage place, type in the client number, and the files come right up.

My big concern is that all our files are on one server. But I'm assured that there is a daily backup, and that the backup tapes are kept safe (I'm hoping in a fire-proof safe).

TriangleMan
2004-Dec-04, 03:25 PM
My big concern is that all our files are on one server. But I'm assured that there is a daily backup, and that the backup tapes are kept safe (I'm hoping in a fire-proof safe).
Hopefully the back-ups are kept off-site, a good disaster-recovery plan will always have back-ups in a different building then the main server. After 9-11 many companies saw the value in this practice.