My work requires a lot of printing and reviewing large documents. It's not that easy to do this outside an office environment, and I want to get better at doing it onscreen -- looking for hardware/software recommendations and just general tips.
So my current process is something like:
1. print five or six big PDFs of 50-250 pages each, mostly text but with lots of numbers, tables and diagrams
2. staple, clip or bind them
3. go through each in varying degrees of detail with a pen, highlighter and those little post-it flag
s that you can write on.
4. stack them in front of my computer and refer frequently to the flagged sections while writing a report and/or building a financial model in Excel.
As you can imagine, this pretty much only works in an office environment with giant fast network laser printers, a supply closet, and plenty of desk space to spread things out. It's really difficult to do it from home, on the road, or working remotely at a coffee shop or co-working space.
Reviewing documents on the same computer where I produce the final work product is just not practical, even with multiple monitors -- it's way too distraction-prone and I don't like having the vertical PDF pages squeezed onto a horizontal monitor, and I'm constantly starting to type in the non-active window etc ... and on a laptop the screen is just too small.
So I'd like to find the best tech alternative. I imagine it would consist of:
1. a really large tablet computer (big enough to display an 8x11 page at 90-100% of its true size)
2. some kind of stylus that i can click back and forth between pen and highlighter.
3. the right software to review and organize PDFs and preserve my scribbles, highlights and flaggged locations
(If the best choice for #3 is Acrobat pro, please recommend the second best choice, as I have come to regard Adobe software, with its incredible bloat and ten different tray apps, as pretty much a virus at this point, and I would rather not solve this problem at all than allow it back on my computers. Currently I use Foxit's free PDF reader but not sure if their paid versions do everything I need.)
Anyway, if you have made this kind of transition and have any particular recommendations for tablets and other helpful products, or just general suggestions, it would be very helpful. Thanks!
(PS my current work computer & laptop are windows 7/8 respectively but not sure that matters much for the tablet. I don't think iPads run big enough though, so I assume we're talking Windows or Android...)