Thankfully I’m one of those hopeless Evernote addicts. In a recent article over at ReadWrite I shared some tips on how to make Evernote rock harder. One item I could easily add to that list would be the Livescribe 3 smartpen ($150) which can sync handwritten notes to Evernote—automatically. The Livescribe 3 already puts your handwritten notes on your iPad or iPhone screen nearly instantaneously via Bluetooth, which is nice, but the auto-send to Evernote function is what really makes it functional for me.
If you’re an Evernote-aholic looking for a fast and easy way to get your handwritten notes from paper to pixel format consider giving the Livescribe 3 smartpen a try.
Paper (real paper, not the app, although I love it for different reasons) is still my preferred method for jotting down notes and sketching out ideas. The tablet (digital) writing experience just isn’t the same yet, so when the Livescribe 3 arrived in the mail I was eager to give it a try.
Getting setup is easy: download and launch the Livescribe+ app, turn the pen on and use the app to pair it to a device. From there, open the included starter notebook and start writing. As with other Livescribe pens, a pencast (which captures audio) can be initiated and controlled by using the pen to tap the record, pause or stop buttons on the Livescribe dot paper.
That is all great but frankly useless to me unless I can get those notes into Evernote to find later and have on me at all times. It was always possible to feed any written note into Evernote in the past by taking a picture, but that’s a bit of a long process. And it must be done manually—so if you forget, too bad. A better way to handle this is to have the Evernote app auto-upload to Evernote. This is much faster and easier and you don’t have to try to remember any extra steps on your own.
To activate the auto-send feature within the Livescribe+ app, just click the share icon from the notebook view and click auto-send. Once you connect your Evernote account, your Livescribe content will auto-sync within Evernote as an auto-named notebook.
Evernote has always had the ability to handle OCR, or optical character recognition (in other words it can understand and make your handwritten notes searchable). But one feature I’ve always longed for was a way for my hand-written notes to be typed out for me. That’s a feature that isn’t officially supported by Evernote, although I did run into a company awhile back that would (for a fee) transcribe your notes by hand and send them back to you to use in Evernote. I passed. Now, thanks to Livescribe, this feature has become a reality.
While the auto-send feature can package your notes in PDF or PNG format to file away in Evernote, my favorite way to transfer notes is using the feed view in the Livescribe app. In feed view I can literally “flip” a handwritten note over and it will become typed text. From there I can share to Evernote in a fully-editable text format.
For more info, check out the official press release: Livescribe and Evernote Team Up.