Choices. That’s what the Mac is all about. After all, it’s a ‘personal’ computer, so we want choices on our Mac. We got ‘em.
Need labels? Need Envelopes? Got mail? Make it easy even if you’re left brain inclined. Or, right brain inclined. Or cheap.
Let me start with ‘cheap’ first. The objective is mailing labels or envelopes. The addresses are tucked away nice and safe and in alphabetical order inside OS X’s AddressBook. All is good.
‘Cheap’ means you know what you need, how to get it, and don’t spend much time (it’s money, you know) or money to achieve your objective. AddressBook is cheap.
It’s free in Mac OS X Tiger and does the job for envelopes and labels. How?
Click on the addresses you need (either envelopes or labels). Click on File and select Print. The Tiger dialog box gives you choices. Free choices. Printer. Envelopes or labels. Label manufacturers and sizes, envelope sizes and address placement.
Life is good. Click and you’re done. See? Cheap. Objective achieved.
Now, let’s say you want to dress up those envelopes a bit. How about adding something to the labels? How about graphics? How about a list bigger than what you have in AddressBook?
What if your mailing list isn’t even in AddressBook? Uh oh. Cheap just went out the window, right?
Not really. I checked around and there’s about a dozen Mac applications that do labels of one kind or another. A couple of them are very good. Not free, but cheap.
What it boils down to is left brain vs. right brain. Once you know what you are, then you’ll know what Mac application for envelopes and labels is best for you.
If you’re confused by this whole ‘left brain vs. right brain’ thing, you’re in good company (that would be me). I can seldom remember which is which.
Left brain behaviors respond to structure, systems, sequential thinking systematic problem solving, logic, need for details and facts, plans, an outline vs. a summary. Is that anybody you know?
Right brain behaviors respond to visual instruction, thoughts, ideas, demonstrations, images, summarizing vs. outlines, sensitivity, overviews, creative.
Whew. Obviously, most of us are a little of each, but tend to gravitate toward one or the other. I bring this up because both of the Mac applications that hand envelopes and labels are just like ‘left brain vs. right brain.’
Neither are bad. Just different.
They both handle envelopes and labels in ways far beyond what AddressBook was intended to handle. Both are solid values, work like Mac applications, and come from publishers who know what they’re doing, and have other excellent products.
Which should you choose? Either if you need graphics, need to import addresses from Excel or another database of addresses, need bar codes and so on.
Labels and Envelopes (not a terribly creative name for a creatively packaged product) will do more kinds of labels and comes with a gazillion photos, masks, images. Mail Factory is quick, simple interface, pulls addresses in from wherever and gets the job done efficiently.
See the difference? Left brain is Mail Factory. Right brain is Labels and Envelopes.
Labels and Envelopes is about $30. Mail Factory is about $40. If you’re more into the business aspects of handling envelopes and labels, need efficiency and control, Mail Factory is a bargain.
If you’re a small business with a creative bent, need ultimate control on the ‘look and feel’ of the envelope or label project, then Labels and Envelopes fits well.
See? It’s easy when you have choices. Now all you need to do is figure out what kind of brain you have.