Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Cairo Cards

The Cairo Cards are a marking system for business cards from As most books on billet work suggest marking at least one billet and I liked the idea of the impromptu zener card effects, I decided to give it a go. I did find one review ( for it, before buying it. I'm not quite the fan that guy is. For me I'd say that my final verdict is "Great idea, iffy execution". In full disclosure I don't have a copy of MS Office, being a Linux user at heart I use open office and have no desire to buy Office, so my first complaint is most likely a result of that. The base copy before changes had some alignment issues, that carried over to printing, I printed them without changing anything to see how they fit on the cards, not well. I know that not every thing has to be perfect but the alignment is noticeably off from card to card, to the point where some of the text left a couple of cards. The way they are put togther fixing the alignment isn't too much of an issue but it is potentially tedious. I'm not too upset about that because I knew pre-purchase I was going to change a lot of the textual design.

Now the first thing I did after I got my files was open the file and try to spot the marking system, I had an idea while looking at them that proved wrong, and I had to re-read the secret part of the manual twice to get it, but once I did it's a pretty easy system to read. Now about my wrong idea, there was a fuzzy bit on each palm that changed a bit from card to card. This turned out to be the word "PROSHOP", that they are marked with the creators mark is not an issue in and of itself. The problem is that it was obviously added to each hand image separately which results in minor variations in placement and the biggest problem is the font is completely different from that already on the hand. A difference that is even clearer when printed out, I can't help but feel that it would be even more evident on a higher resolution that would result if I got the cards printed by a printshop. It's not an issue performance wise but I can't help but feel that I just don't want that to appear so blatantly on something I hand out to people.

As for the actual marking system I feel it's pretty good, it's biggest limitation is distance. It's hard for me to tell which is which after the cards get about an arms length away or in poor light, though the book does off a suggestion on a way to improve the visibility at the cost of deceptiveness. When folded all the possible marks are in the same quarter so as long as you fold that to the outside it's pretty easy to see which you have at a glance. I've tried out the first two of the three routines on people and it went well.

All in all what I got could have been better, and to get all the use out of it I want is going to take a bit of effort on my part. That said I'm basically satisfied with what I got as I got exactly what I was promised.

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