As much as I enjoy my gadgets, I’ve never ended my love affair with paper and pen. There’s just something about the feeling of handwriting that makes me slow down and think differently. (Incidentally, do you know that schools have stopped teaching cursive? Yeesh, is that a good idea?) I’m convinced some of my best ideas come when I’m doodling or sketching. That used to mean I was stuck with either keeping scraps around (which drives my Type-A gene insane), or scanning them one by one (such a drag that I put it off until I had the dreaded piles everywhere). Well, if you love pen and paper too, you can still be organized…without the heavy lifting.
Here are three fun ways to make handwriting digital.
Evernote’s brilliant app organizes your notes and makes them searchable, even when they’re handwritten. That’s why its collaboration with Moleskine is perfect: pick your journal, enjoy jotting, then use Evernote to upload your work. The app is optimized to take pictures of Moleskine pages, and the notebook comes with three months of Evernote Premium, which means you’ll be able to upload more doodles and brainstorms per month, and even access them offline.
From the land of ABBA and IKEA, another irresistible Swedish export. Whitelines is a free app with proprietary writing papers that you can buy (or download and print for free here). Jot or sketch, then hold up your phone and the app will automatically photograph and send your work to Dropbox, Evernote, email, or another destination of your choice. The white lines disappear when they’re made digital, so all that’s left is your writing.
If you want to go fully digital without a scanning step in between, it’s all about Livescribe 3. Feels like a ballpoint pen, but it automatically sends your writing to your tablet or smartphone as you write. It also has an audio “Pencast” function, so you can jot a word or phrase (say, “address”), record, then tap that word later to hear what you said.
So if you’re not ready to give up handwriting either, consider giving these a try. They’ve got the (ahem) write stuff.
Are you also a handwriting fan? Let me know in the comments!