With lot of meetings to attend, my notes started getting cluttered and I started loosing some. That’s when I started looking for a digital solution which is as close as possible to normal note taking. Through my initial searches I landed on Wacom Bamboo Spark Notepad. It didn’t make sense for me to put so much money into a notepad. Then I realised that I have an iPad (iPad Mini 2) and started to explore note taking on iPad. Having an iPad was better in meetings since I could also use that to browse and do other research while in the meeting.
With my hunt for note apps on iPad which have good palm rejection, I ended up with GoodNotes. I ordered a normal touch screen stylus on amazon to use with this app. Though it gave a decent palm rejection with “palm rest” feature, it was far from making taking notes natural. With further research, I ended up with Wacom Bamboo Fineline active stylus series. There were other bluetooth active styluses (like Pencil by 53), but the finiline had a thin tip which made it perfect for taking notes/writing. Pencil by 53 would be better option if the usage is more towards art/sketching.
Bamboo Fineline just feels very natural, so much so that you would switch from iPad to paper and try to write! Since it’s an active stylus, palm rejection is perfect. When the Bamboo Fineline is connected, iPad stop taking input from you fingers and palm which makes it perfect. Though this feature is not supported by all the applications, list of applications which support these features is available on Wacom website. Bamboo Fineline also has pressure sensitivity, which was not really important for me since I was just looking to write with it.
Overall, it feels great in hand like a normal pen and palm rejection makes it a great iPad companion for someone who takes notes, scribbles or into sketching/art.
Here is the sample scribble I had done using Bamboo Fineline 2 (pardon my handwriting, it actually looks better here):
Amazon – http://amzn.to/2jKNzKd
While exploring Strava third party projects I came across this website Relive.cc. Relive automatically creates a video out of your ride on Strava!
All you need to do is:
- Authorise Relive.cc to Strava
- Take a Ride
- Wait for the mail from Relive.cc with the link to video!
That’s as simple as that! Though there are some limitations for this to happen:
- This will not work on past rides, it only works on rides you take after authorising Relive.cc. They may change this in future.
- Activity needs to be public (not private)
- Activity needs to be longer than 20 minutes and 20 kilometers (and shorter than 12 hours)
- Activity is not tagged as a “commute” in Strava
That’s all! Relive will continue to send you videos for all future rides unless you opt to unsubscribe.
Update: How to download the video
Relive doesn’t have an option to download the video. I used this chrome extension to download it on Chrome. You can look for similar extension for Firefox if you use Firefox.
My biggest requirement in a note taking app is accessibility. And hence Google Docs used to be my favorite until I discovered Simplenote. I think it is a well polished note taking app with excellent featureset which I am going to talk below.
It is available on Android, iOS, Kindle, Mac and Web. I have used Web, Mac & Android personally and the interface is identical. Everything is synced. I have a pinned note called “Clipboard” which I use whenever I need to copy paste long text from one device to another. Simplenote also features a nice search box using which one can quickly find what they are looking for.
Sharing & Collaborating
Sharing a note is dead simple. In a note tag if you enter an email address it autotically share the note with that email. Recepeint has an option to view the note without signing up, but one needs to register to edit and collaborate.
Versioning and backup
All the notes are backed up and have timely versions. This is a great feature especially when collaborating with others. If something goes wrong just switch back to older version of the note.
Notes can also be published to web for public access. Anyone with the link will be able to access the note. Simplenote also supports “markdown” which makes writing experience better (for people who are used to markdown).
P.S: Simplenote was aquired by Automattic, makers of WordPress, the most popular blogging platform.
Android – Play Store
iOS – App Store
Web – simplenote.com
Mac – App Store
I am slowly switching over to Evernote whenever there is more research involved and collaboration is involved. Some of my colleagues use Google Keep also, but somehow I couldn’t get used to it. So basically Simplenote for quick note taking and Evernote for more research oriented notes.