There’s something creepy about data. Some of it disappears. Some of it breeds. Sometimes, data I want can’t be found.
Other times, data I expect shows up in duplicates. And it doesn’t matter the database. iPhoto. iTunes. Mail. Address Book. Even the venerable and not-so-often Address Book is not immune from contact breeding. How do you stop the duplicates? Two ways.
The Easy Way Or The Hard Way
Maybe it’s a bad case of OCD, but duplicates of anything drive me crazy. Except extra money, I guess. Like that happens. My latest find is one that de-dupes the duplicates works on the contacts in Address Book.
Don’t tell me you’ve never had duplicate contact entries in Address Book.
Here’s how it works. Sometimes we add a contact while we’re in a hurry and not realize we already have some contact information.
Maybe the name is spelled wrong, or entered last name first, but whatever the methodology for duplicates, Address Book doesn’t do a good job of telling us. So, the hard way is doing the duplicate removal by hand, one at a time. There needs to be a better way.
That’s where simple little apps like AddressBook Cleaner become useful, though not used often. It’s an easier way.
Download, install, run. AddressBook cleaner looks for Address Books automatically (hence, not much of a need to run it every day).
Potential duplicates are listed on screen so you can decide which to keep, which to delete. A merge option would be handy. I find that some duplicates have address information, while others have email or phone number info.
Filtering lets you match specific conditions so the duplicates are truly duplicates.
That’s it. Once you’ve cleaned up the duplicates and Address Book is squared away, you’re not likely to use AddressBook Cleaner again soon.
But if you have plenty of activity going on in Address Book, having an app that helps keep it tidy is worth a few bucks.
The one function I’d like to see is the ability to merge contact records with a click or two.
A screen on one side would show Duplicate 1, with Duplicate 2 on the other side, and check boxes for data you want to keep, and a button to merge.
That would save even more time, but what AddressBook Cleaner does is find duplicates and let you do the work of cleaning and updating.