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By B.L. Ochman

UPDATE: Unfortunately, I have been unable to get WiseStamp to work correctly in gmail, and I have not gotten help from their tech support. I have waited two days before amending this post to say that this is an interesting idea that apparently has a lot of bugs to work out before it’s ready for prime time.

Even though I lack the actual technical gene, I am a bit of a geek girl, so I’ve been trying out cool apps for more than 20 years (yikes!)

Back in the 80s, those of us curious and geeky enough to be using email were in love with a company whose name I can’t recall, that used a primitive method to let you add a jpeg of your actual written signature to your emails or Word documents.

Fast forward twenty-something years later. These days, me and a lot of other geeky people are loving WiseStamp, which lets you add real-time content from all your social networks to your email signature.
Among many other options, you can include your latest Tweet, Stumble, blog post, Digg, SlideShare upload, Eventbrite event or the products in your eBay store.

Your WiseStamp signature lets recipients go directly to your online content, reply to Tweets, and lots more.

It integrates seamlessly with Gmail, Yahoo, AOL mail, and Hotmail. And it lets you add your signature to just about any webpage that supports HTML, such as Google Docs, Zoho Docs, etc. The website says more than 250 million emails have already been sent with WiseStamp signatures. The company was incubated at Dogpatch Labs, and launched in 2009.

As with several other programs, you also can add links to Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc.

The 80s method
How you got your signature into your email back in the 80s? You Faxed your signature to the company (remember Fax machines?) They emailed you back a jpeg you could add to your email and documents. I think it cost a dollar. I am sure they made a million and got bought by somebody or other. Does anyone remember their name?

It was so simple and so smart! Nobody had a scanner in those days because they still cost thousands. We’re spoiled now because we can buy really good scanners for under $100. But these folks thought up a great way to use their scanner to make people happy. As for Fax machines: they’ve gone the way of the dinosaurs.

To quote my friend Francine Hardaway’s recent Tweet, “Have I thanked the gods lately for my love of technology? It has kept me sane.”

We’ve come a long way baby.