Aside from doing (and knowing) everything, there is a neat feature on Google Docs that you might find immensely helpful if you find yourself doing archival research.
When researching at the archives, most people take digital photographs of the documents they’re looking at. At the end of a day you’re left with hundreds of photographs that you now have to sort through, catalog, read, and take notes on. Personally, I used to print all of my images and then spend hours going through them highlighting the key points and making general notes based on what the documents contained.
Google Docs now has a feature where you can upload a photograph of a document and it will convert it into keyword searchable text. It can be done completely automatically in two easy steps.
Step One: Select your image file to upload (it must be less than 2mb) Make sure you select: “Convert text from PDF and Image files”
Step Two: There is no step two. Google does everything for you. What you end up with is your uploaded image file like so:
And directly below the image will be your converted text:
The text conversion is never 100% perfect and the accuracy depends on how clear the original document is, but it is still far more efficient than manually transcribing or taking notes on each document. An additional benefit is that you now have an archived copy of all your files in case something happens to the originals. Plus you can also use the search feature on Google Docs to keyword search all of your documents at once in case you need some information you remember seeing but can’t remember what document it was in.