Six software packages, free or low cost to help you tackle your deluge of emails

Fast Co., Iss. 132, Feb. 2009 at 50, cites research on email volume that the “average worker receives 200 a day.” Regardless of your inflow, these six programs sound useful to some in-house lawyers.

The article praises ClearContext, a free Outlook add-on that scans your traffic and uses what it gleans to prioritize the incoming messages with color codes and other techniques. ActiveWords “lets you script common email answers.” That sounds like the ability to use a single key stroke to recall an oft-written message. Gist and Xobni roam around your contact information and, for example, showcase a phone number of someone you are writing. Gist searches news feeds and blogs for information about the person you are emailing.

The author of the article scoble@fastcompany.com recommends that you bypass email for some collaborative tasks. Instead use an online word-processing tool such as Google Docs or Adobe’s Buzzword.

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