PDA

View Full Version : good note taking app?




civicsiboi
Oct 23, 2010, 11:54 PM
I want to use my iPad in class to take notes on. I am new to the iPad and wanted to know if anyone has some good ideas on these apps and also a stylus that would be good for this purpose.



steezy1337
Oct 24, 2010, 12:15 AM
I want to use my iPad in class to take notes on. I am new to the iPad and wanted to know if anyone has some good ideas on these apps and also a stylus that would be good for this purpose.

If you're wanting to type the notes I've found evernote does what I need it to in my classes, I'm doing a computing degree so most of my note taking is just brief notes to enforce what I've been doing on the computers. The only downfall is you can't do diagrams in evernote but I rarely need to do these and always have pen and paper with me just in case.

seajay96
Oct 24, 2010, 12:38 AM
Stylus: I use a Boxwave stylus/pen combo. It has a nearly perfect size and feel for me and slides nicely on the screen

Note taking apps: there are a number of threads with a number of different recommendations. Noterize and Notes+ are both good apps that combine handwriting, drawing, and typing as well as PDF and email export. For handwriting to text recognition, Writepad is an excellent app.

And, in a related topic, Goodreader does PDF annotations so you can take notes and highlight PDF documents.

MXSkier62
Oct 24, 2010, 12:06 PM
I tried a lot of note taking apps for class, and haven't been able to find one until now. Noterize doesn't have great flow with handwriting. Penultimate and that genre haven't worked well for me either.

I have not been using the ipad in class because none of those apps were good enough. However, last night i downloaded notes plus, and it seems perfect. Has good fluidity, and more importantly, has a great palm protector, and has a zoom to write function that makes writing in the lines and smoothly, very possible.

I think im going to try this app in class tomorrow morning, and if you want ill report back.

tekchic
Oct 24, 2010, 12:36 PM
I've used everything from the stock Notes app to Evernote, Mental Note, Pages, and now Notes Plus. Since Notes Plus was on sale yesterday for 99 cents, I picked it up and have been pleasantly surprised. I'll probably switch to using it for meeting notes.

I use Evernote heavily on my desktop at work, but you can't edit a rich text note on iPhone/iPad which is pretty irritating, so I mainly use it as "read only" when on an iOS device.

Mental Note is pretty decent but I'm growing to like the features of Notes Plus a little bit more. I'll still use both for awhile to see which one is best to swap to.

Other people seem to dig Penultimate and Note Taker HD, but I haven't tried those two yet. Unless Mental Note / Notes Plus can't do something the others do, I see no reason to buy another notes app.

civicsiboi
Oct 24, 2010, 02:06 PM
sweet I just bought notes plus, but now is there anywhere that sells the stylus. i dont want to wait for one to come the in mail. best buy, target, walmart, apple ect...... any ideas ?

zhenya
Oct 24, 2010, 03:18 PM
sweet I just bought notes plus, but now is there anywhere that sells the stylus. i dont want to wait for one to come the in mail. best buy, target, walmart, apple ect...... any ideas ?

Best Buy sells the Targus stylus which I'm pretty sure is a re-branded Boxwave - it LOOKS identical, and I'm very happy with its performance.

Edit: I've also tried a ton of note taking apps, and may add Notes Plus to that today with the sale price. So far the only two I've found that do acceptable hand-writing are Penultimate and Note Taker HD. I like Penultimate for long, free-hand writing, as I treat it more like a journal, whereas Note Taker HD works more like a sheet notebook where you use a few pages at a time. I think it has the best handwriting input, and with the zoom feature you can fit a lot more on a page. It also offers far more features than Penultimate. Notes Plus looks to be very similar to Note Taker HD. Realize that any of these apps will take some practice before you can write reasonably well with them - it's not the same as writing on paper, and there is a learning curve.

My favorite full-featured notes app is Notify. Unfortunately its handwriting is not as good as the best apps, but it offers far more flexibility than either of the other two - especially if you want to be able to insert pdfs, pictures, web pages or clippings, and annotate around them.

Tom G.
Oct 24, 2010, 08:24 PM
I was reading this post early this morning and checked out both apps listed in seajay96's post. I decided to go with Notes Plus and tried to buy it but couldn't. I went to the app support site and sent Viet Tran the developer an e-mail as the app is on sale today only for 99 cents. In less than 5 minutes I had a reply from him.

It blew my mind away that at 7:30 AM on a Sunday morning you would get a reply from a developer that quick. I sent him back a nice reply thanking him for his fast response, and he replied that he tries to spend 2 hours a day answering e-mails. Pretty good business plan if you ask me.

I was able to purchase the app a few minutes later.

P.S.: In his reply he said that he has no control over the purchasing of the app that this is totally a function of the App Store and any problem in purchasing would have to be theirs. As I said above the problem was cleared up quickly and I got the app for the 99 cents as advertised.

tekchic
Oct 24, 2010, 09:03 PM
@Tom G. - That's odd. Come to think of it, I remember clicking "Purchase" yesterday and it just sat around at the Waiting... message with just the icon and wouldn't download. I figured my iPad needed a soft reset and after I did that, it seemed to work fine. I wonder if the App Store server was glitchy for the app download.

Anyway, I love the Notes Plus app -- I had to read every page of the manual to figure out how to get the typing keyboard to come up on the screen (tap with 2 fingers) but otherwise it's a stand-out, easy to use app.

I'm going to use it for meetings the next week and then give it probably a 5-star app review. I love supporting excellent developers.

zhenya
Oct 24, 2010, 09:27 PM
Guys, I tried the Notes Plus app today, but I'm finding that when I get about 1/2 a page worth of text, the app really bogs down. I'm writing in zoom mode, and the character smoothing slows down so much that every time I move back to the right to complete a line or move to the next line, I have to wait until it finishes it's smoothing so I can be sure I am spacing my writing properly. Anyone else having this issue?

In general I find that it has some interesting features, but the above issue, plus the lack of a real eraser makes it a deal-breaker for me. I just don't see what it offers above Note Taker HD. (The app I find it to be most similar to).

rwdds
Oct 25, 2010, 12:47 AM
SoundNote is a brand new app that is working very nicely. This one records the audio portion of a lecture and as you type in any notes, syncs the timing with the creation of that note. When you select a specific note, the audio playback jumps to a few seconds before that point in the lecture. It's very cool.

Diane B
Oct 25, 2010, 09:28 AM
I just bought Notes Plus on sale yesterday It is by far the best note taking app I've tried. I want to be able to mix text and handwriting and I want the handwriting to be easy. I have had Smartnotes for awhile and like it for creating note books but its too complex to use efficiently. I have Noteshelf and using handwriting is easy, but not text. There are some things that need to be down for me to give 5 stars to Notes Plus but the developer responded to me already and all the things I want are either in the works or planned. DRopbox is one and I got around it by emailing a PDF to myself and opening in Goodreader but it will be better when I can access Dropbox internally as I can in so many of my apps. I would like photo insertion and that's planned soon.

Handwriting with palm protection is easy and works nicely. You can use text and place it wherever you wish and even go back and write around it. Ability to change text font, size and color as well as pen size and color. I would recommend you read the short guide to get the most out of it but once you do, its easy to use.

Diane

Diane B
Oct 25, 2010, 09:29 AM
i haven't been able to see a reason to use the zoom text. I didn't care for it and wonder why you chose that as opposed to just writing directly which is easy.

Guys, I tried the Notes Plus app today, but I'm finding that when I get about 1/2 a page worth of text, the app really bogs down. I'm writing in zoom mode, and the character smoothing slows down so much that every time I move back to the right to complete a line or move to the next line, I have to wait until it finishes it's smoothing so I can be sure I am spacing my writing properly. Anyone else having this issue?

In general I find that it has some interesting features, but the above issue, plus the lack of a real eraser makes it a deal-breaker for me. I just don't see what it offers above Note Taker HD. (The app I find it to be most similar to).

Beaverman3001
Oct 25, 2010, 10:31 AM
Notes Plus is by far the best one I have used. It really does have some great features and if you can catch it on sale (IDK if its still on sale or not) it is a steal.

David-fr
Oct 25, 2010, 10:48 AM
I have find a cool formula

I have mobile me so I use iDisk to keep notes there. I take notes with Pages and I can view them any where :)

zhenya
Oct 25, 2010, 10:52 AM
i haven't been able to see a reason to use the zoom text. I didn't care for it and wonder why you chose that as opposed to just writing directly which is easy.

Because using the zoom function allows you to write more clearly and much smaller. You also don't have to worry about resting your wrist on the page. If you are writing relatively largely, or taking notes combined with diagrams, whatever, it doesn't help much. If you'd like to write long paragraphs, it's a huge benefit.

he problem still exists, even without using the zoom, though - as the character smoothing is used either way. It's just a bit more annoying when using it, as you have to wait for it to catch up before you can continue your sentence.

smetvid
Oct 25, 2010, 11:08 AM
Personally I kind of like Smartnote for this sort of function. There is a free version with certain limitations and ads but still very usable.

Smartnote uses multiple notebooks which you create. Think of it sort of like a backup full of notebooks for your different subjects. Smartnote has a lot of neat drawing tools built in as well which means you can draw diagrams to go along with your notes. Typing is a bit funky with the app since it uses text block areas for you to type in. Think of the type tool in Photoshop for example. You can have a text object that takes up the entire page or just a small area like adding a small note to a diagram.

stuartmeyers
Oct 25, 2010, 05:23 PM
I have tried Notes Plus and although its a bit buggy, I liked it and especially the zoom handwrite feature. Tried Mental Note and it was ok - it added graphics but was very good with text and writing overlap. Adobe Ideas is good especially since you can draw a lot but I find it hard to get perspective on the page. I would choose Notes Plus.