MaxEmail is marketed as a service for sending (PDF, Word, etc) and receiving (PDF, TIFF) faxes. It works quite well for that, but it has one other feature. The fax number is also a voice mail number. Voice messages are digitized and emailed; they can also be read on MaxEmail.
I love the voice mail facility -- as a substitute for the old fashioned tape/digital recorder. When I think of something I need to do, and I can't enter it into my Palm, I hit the quick dial for my MaxEmail number. When I get a connection, I hit 1 on the phone pad and I leave my message (hitting 1 bypasses the longish greeting message). It shows up in my work and home email, including my Gmail account (in Gmail the message is tagged by one of my filters). I listen to it and take action. Every voice message, of course, is attached to a time stamped email.
My wife uses the same service to send me messages. She's mobile and often do child wrangling, so I can process her messages from my desk and often act on them. Unlike standard voice mail these messages don't interrupt meetings, and I can even manage them when I'm on conference calls.
Far superior than any dictaphone or handheld recorder or phone based voice note service or PDA recorder. I think Maxemail should market this more than they do.
Update 9/29/05. One other twist. If you use iTunes to handle WAV files, then when you open the file it is copied into the iTunes library. There you can listen to it. If you want to keep it, you retitle it, add metadata, etc. iTunes is a very handy way to manage these sound fragments. Of course this library can sync to one's iPod -- handy way to catch up on prior thoughts. (Shades of the future where we'll be able to search metadata indexed AV streams of our everyday life, great stuff for old tired brains ...)
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