Best iPad handwritten note solution?
April 20, 2018 9:15 AM   Subscribe

Part of my job involves taking very detailed notes during negotiations. For Reasons, it has to be done by hand, but I think people will be OK with me using an iPad or other flat-lying tablet. App or workflow recommendations? Stylus recommendations for use over 2+ hours?

Additional points:

  • Ideally, it would convert my handwriting scrawl in real time, so that I could immediately correct any errors before I forget what was said -- like, I'd write a line, and simultaneously, right above, I'd see what the text got OCR'd as, so when the speakers took a breath, I could fix typos or incorrect words/add clarifying comments.

  • I'm fine with e-mailing the typewritten notes to myself afterwards, so cloud integration is not necessary.

  • I have an old iPad that we're thinking about replacing, so if the answer is "Get a new iPad ____," that's totally fine.

  • posted by joyceanmachine to Work & Money (4 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
    I think a new 9.7" iPad with an Apple Pencil and the Nebo app could work for your needs. That app lets you tap a line of handwritten text to immediately convert, and has some really nice features for editing using the stylus.

    I use the Pencil for giving 1-hour lectures and taking notes during 1-hour seminars, haven't tried it up for 2 hours yet.

    Beware that the sound of the stylus on the glass is a little bit louder than that of pen on paper.
    posted by wyzewoman at 10:07 AM on April 20, 2018

    I tried to do this with iPad+Pencil+nebo. I find it on the whole a distraction, the system got my handwriting wrong often enough that it distracted me from my notes, and I took worse notes as a result. But my handwriting is terrible and you may not have this issue. I also got a holder for the pencil to make it easier to write with, there are several options you might try (pretty cheap on Amazon) to find one that is more comfortable for long writing stints.
    posted by ch1x0r at 10:47 AM on April 20, 2018

    It does not (yet) do OCR on the handwriting, but otherwise the remarkable e-paper tablet is amazing.
    posted by dis_integration at 11:02 AM on April 20, 2018

    Oh hello, are you me?

    I find that the ipad,+ pencil + myscript keyboard works pretty well, (I actually use it to write emails regularly, and since it plays nicely with our secure servers I can use it to do update outlook etc. you need to write BIG though to make sure it's accurate, but it's not a big deal- it transcribes live). My script does a really good job with punctuation and capitalization, so I've been pretty happy with it.

    For personal note taking I use Ipad + pencil + good notes app on a day to day basis for all my mad scribbling. GoodNotes4 has the option to convert handwriting to text, and when I write clearly, it works pretty well, but isn't as accurate as myscript. I also find that if I have converted text I want to copy into the secure server/email, my firm's software does not like this. But this is great for basically replicating a notebook; with the added benefit of being able to do some really cool doodling in the margins that you can just easily cut out and move to a different page.

    I have been using the ipad+ pencil exclusively since the newest pro ipad came out in the fall, and it's been great. I don't find writing on the ipad at all loud- it's actually quieter for me than using a pen or pencil.
    posted by larthegreat at 11:11 AM on April 20, 2018

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