A small piece of thick paper on which the owner has printed such pieces of information as their name, company, phone number, email address, and the like. Ostensibly used so that others may contact the owner expeditiously. Generally used for picking one's teeth, according to Dave Barry.

The standard size for a business card in the United States is 2 inches by 3.5 inches. They should be printed on reasonably heavy stock, at least 100 pound postcard paper (216 gsm). -- Thicker, such as 250 gsm or 291 gsm is more impressive and professional seeming.

The manner in which business cards are exchanged is very revealing about a culture.

In Japan, two individuals will exchange cards, with bowing, and apologies if one side is short of business cards. This is a very individual exchange - it grows O(n2) with the number of parties meeting*.

In America, The distribution of cards tends to be more parallelized. Each participant selects as many of their cards as there are participants on the other side, and quickly slide them across the table. Asynchronously, handshakes across the table occur; the handshake process takes O(n2)*; the distribution process takes O(n). Business cards can then be left in front of participants, to use as a tool for remembering names**.

* Actually, it grows with order O(m*n), where m and n are the number of participants from each side of a meeting.
**It helps to place the cards down in the order the participants are seated.

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