Academics and the Apple Pencil?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by rhyzome, Mar 3, 2016.

  1. rhyzome macrumors regular

    Apr 2, 2012
    Anyone use the Pencil + iPad for academic use?

    I'm interested in whether people have found useful applications in terms of more conveniently navigating, highlighting and annotating texts, etc?

    If you do this kind of thing, do you find it convenient to somehow synchronize your changes/notes between your iPad and Mac for making outlines and more substantial work (writing,etc)? How?

    Anyone use it to take notes at meetings? I suppose this would be most useful if there were a robust handwriting recognition engine embedded in some app...

    Would be interested to hear any other academic applications of the iPad + Pencil.
  2. username: macrumors 6502a

    Dec 16, 2013
    I'll chime and say I would be interested to hear from any academics too. Those threads so helpfully linked are not really focused around academic work.
  3. silverblack macrumors 68030


    Nov 27, 2007
    I would have thought that teaching, note taking, and annotating PDFs (journal articles) and Office documents (manuscript preparation) were exactly academic work. Perhaps you could enlighten us with what other academic work your have in mind, to help others offer information on what you want to hear.
  4. rhyzome thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 2, 2012
    Thanks for the links. Of course teaching (and the teacher!) is academic but I admit my post contained some ambiguity...

    I'm more interested in academic research applications involving the iPad + pencil: reference management, organization, etc., weaving the device into reading and annotating for the purposes of academic writing (especially whether it is possible and efficient to somehow sync or airdrop annotations, highlights, notes or long "quotes" from a PDF on the iPad you read on to the Mac you write on), and perhaps what some people call the digital humanities.

    I'm interested in general experience with academic applications of the device that I haven't considered, too, as I don't yet own an iPad + pencil and am thus likely not as well positioned to think of all of them.
  5. fronesis macrumors member

    Oct 1, 2012
    I'm a Professor in the social sciences/humanities, and I use the iPad Pro and Pencil literally every day. I read large numbers of journal articles and books on the iPad and mark them up with the pencil in PDF Expert. I have probably 500 PDF's in iCloud in the PDF Expert folder and at any given time I'm working with 50 or 60 of those (I'm currently finishing a book).

    iCloud automatically updates all the PDFs, so as soon as I mark something up on the iPad it's already on my mac (in iCloud drive) so I can look at the PDF on the mac as I write.

    I also use Amazon kindle on the iPad and like the pencil for highlighting academic texts.

    I use the Notes app for taking notes during talks and seminars. Mainly these are typed notes, but I will occasionally also draw – e.g. to copy down a chart or table that a speaker is using or to incorporate a photo I've taken. These too are automaticaly synced by iCloud to my mac and phone (I sometimes take notes on my phone, a 6S+).

    I've used an iPad as a key part of my academic work since it was released, and with the iPad PRO and pencil I'm just more productive.

    I also read undergrad and graduate student papers on the iPad and mark them up there.

    I did ALL of this just the same before the iPad PRO, but used my finger to mark things up. It's world's better with the Pencil.

    I was worried the PRO would be too big, but now I'm not sure. If they release a 9.7" iPad with the Pencil (as expected), I will be torn about going back to the smaller iPad or sticking with the big one. But in either case I can't imagine not using the pencil from here on out (I've considered buying another as a backup, just because they idea of losing the pencil is worrisome; I couldn't work without it now).
  6. silverblack macrumors 68030


    Nov 27, 2007
    The only one thing on your list that absolutely cannot be done on iPad is bibliography management equivalent to "Cite as You Write" with Endnote on Word.

    But this is an iOS limitation not directly related to Pencil and iPP.
  7. Rachel83706 macrumors newbie


    Mar 8, 2016
    Boise 83706
    I was looking for a stylus to help with all my highlighting needs (control is a major issue!) and was having such a hard time!!

    The pencil works great! Worth the money because it works ... Hope that helps.

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