Goodbye Traditional Notepad! Hello Digital! My Notepad App Musings

Taking notes is one of the vital things to do by a multi-tasking human like me. Jotting notes, minutes of a meeting or just doodling for some ideas can be done on a traditional notepad paper. Every year I consume at least one steno note pad and a clutter of scratch papers for this purpose. For the longest time I’ve been planning to do this digitally all the way ever since I bought my first PDA the Casio PV-200. From that monochrome gadget to now the 9.7″ screen colored tablet I know theres a lot of differences and maybe it is time to really say goodbye.

Last night I saw my son doodling the free Wacom Bamboo Paper app with my el-cheapo stylus on the iPad. I never really had a serious chance to try this app until last night. To my surprise it was good and it virtually reproduced a notepad feel. But since its digital I thought of researching for a more powerful notepad  app, I was intrigued to the features like annotating photos and be able to actually paste an actual type on the page.

Enter Penulmate $0.99 and Noteshelf $4.99 – both are handwriting notepad apps that is more advanced than the Bamboo Paper. I first bought Penulmate (v3.3) because its $0.99 with lots of reviews in the US iTunes app store. While it has Dropbox and Evernote integrations I felt this app lacked advance features I’m looking for and the eye candy which most iOS apps have.

Coincidentally Macstories posted a review of a notepad application yesterday. It is Noteshelf, this app is a nice combination of the Bamboo Paper and Penulmate plus more. This $4.99 app is all worth it with more features like stamping an actual type, pen highlighter, emoticons, tagging and pasting photos on the page in any rotation I like. My style of noting is not the typical formal type and I’m so glad that I discovered a useful app that fits my needs (almost).

Noteshelf also have Dropbox and Evernote support and thats a bonus but there are small pieces that will make this app perfect like Handwriting Recognition or maybe OCR, Dropbox auto-backup and a matching iPhone and Mac App so I can seamlessly make and see my notes on an Apple computing device thats with me at a given time.

I like Noteshelf and its powerful features but if you need a simple notepad app you might be alright with the Bamboo Paper or the little more advance Penulmate. I’m hoping that Noteshelf will help me ditch my traditional paper Corona Prestige Notebook so I can somehow save the Earth and fulfill my longest desire, to have all my docs and notes all digital.


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