Sunday, May 9, 2010

Checking out two new apps, MarsEdit 3.0 on OSX and Note Taker HD on iPad

I've been experimenting with two new applications, MarsEdit 3.0 on OSX and Note Taker HD on the iPad.

I've used Dan Bricklin's software since VisiCalc on the Apple. It is great to see him writing apps for the iPhone and iPad. Note Taker is an app that lets you write notes just like you were writing with a pen on paper. No attempts to OCR but many interesting technologies to make writing in a 'e'-format the same [or better] than on paper. I have tried various technologies in this area for years, but until Note Taker HD and the iPad I've found all far from the mark of replacing my trusty Mead Composition books. The first one I tried was a predecessor to the Adesso CyberPad, CrossPad by A. T. Cross Pens and IBM. I do not think much has improved since  device until the iPad and Note Taker HD.

Mead Composition Book



There is still much to be tuned in working with the user interface on the iPad, and Note Taker HD is in the middle of these as many apps are on the iPad. But over all this is a fantastic application. I am still up in the air as to whether typing notes on the iPad or writing them is the right future. Or perhaps a combo of the two is the way to go. Note Taker HD does not attempt to handle typed text currently and I do not know if this is on Bricklin's radar. All of the combo apps I have tried so far are far from a good solution. A third aspect is recording audio as well as writing or typing notes. Note Taker HD, again, does not attempt this and I do not know if it will, some or the note pad type apps do include this feature. I have used a simple hardware voice recorder for many years, but to be able to keep audio and your written notes in sync right from the recorded point is a very useful future.

I have done some test writing with Note Taker HD to get familiar with its operation. There are two edit modes, called Edit 1 and Edit 2. Edit 2 seems to be the way to go for note taking, picture a little 'zoomed' in window that moves along as you write. This is one area were some work is needed, the operation and smoothness of using Edit 2 can be improved, it still gets in the way of pure writing like you do on paper. It needs to be invisible as you write.

I am looking forward to taking Note Taker HD on a real world






drive and sharing my experiences.




























I am writing this post with the new 3.0 version of MarsEdit for OS X, Daniel Jalkut at Red Sweater Software had a great application for writing blog entries and this new version is an outstanding upgrade. I will write about it more as I learn its new features.



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