My life is over-flowing with paper, and I would like to buy a scanner and try to get as many documents into my computer as possible.

Below are some questions that I'd appreciate help with...

1.) Has scanner technology changed much in the past 5 years? (Last time I bought a scanner)

2.) Are scanners a "commodity", or are there some that really stand out?

3.) How much do I have to spend to get a decent scanner to scan in documents (e.g. Tax Returns, Receipts, Reports, Manuals, etc.)?

4.) Once I have a scanner, should I scan documents in as a PDF or as a GIF? (Key question!!)

5.) What DPI scanner should I buy?

6.) At what DPI would I need to scan things so that TEXT can be read on a computer monitor, and also re-printed back out? (Another key question!!)

7.) Are all scanners Mac compatible? (I have a MacBook with Snow Leopard.)

Also, I am away from home now on a work assignment, so I'd like to find a scanner that meets all of needs, but that isn't the size of sofa!!!