The further I get in my dissertation fielwork, the more I promote my work or see it published or presented, and the more conferences, projects, or exhibitions I take part in, the more I find that my social and professional contacts are not only ballooning out of simple control but are also overlapping and interconnecting in fascinating ways. I like this sort of connection-making, and it is increasingly important as I approach the job market (both academic and non-). But it has recently begun to feel as though I could benefit from some method beyond just searching my email accounts, fieldwork contacts, and stacks of business cards every time some connection like this comes to mind
I'm curious what tools others out there use to manage such connections?
An online search turned up this article, which suggests perhaps the easiest would be just giving gmail's contact manager more of a chance (since at least I'd start with a fair amount of stuff already in there), but I don't think this is quite as dynamic as I have in mind. I want something more than a digital Rolodex, with a smooth interface for managing and variously searching, visualizing, interconnecting, etc. these sorts of contacts from a number of different but overlapping worlds (in my case, academia, journalism, urban activism, professional architecture and design, etc).
Anybody have any tips, suggestions, or other thoughts about all this? Thanks!