Pen and paper–the Equil Smartpen (ok connected pen)…

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Over the years I have chased my personal issue of pen and paper. I am a huge fan of writing notes on paper with a pen. For years I have been a devotee of the Livescribe pens for that very reason. They allow me to combine notes and recordings of events into a single unified page. I have a Livescribe pen in my bag.

I do still like to take notes on paper whoever and sometimes I find myself missing the old yellow legal pad. Plus at times the Livescribe paper gets to be expensive. At work we have a stack of yellow legal pads and frankly I have thought about taking those to meetings rather than the Livescribe. The problem> Then I have to transcribe my notes to digital.

Enter a new pen to the market. The Equil Smartpen2. It allows you to use any paper. You simply download the application (PC, Macintosh, iOS and Android, I honestly don’t know about Windows Phone support) and away you go.

The pen is smaller than the Livescribe so it is a little easier. In larger meetings where things fly faster than you can write, the Livescribe has that nice record feature. The newer pens actually use the connected device’s audio recording rather than recording on the pen.

But the Equil has a great feature. It has an application that is designed to capture sketches. Sure it will convert your handwritten text into digital typed text but it also has this cool support for those who are more artistic and like to draw things. I like to draw out diagrams when I am talking to people so being able to copy them and paste them into an email is very nice.

Overall the technology in this space has grown by leaps and bounds in the past few years. You can very easily find good video pens, good scanning pens and digital capture pens that work for what you are trying to do. It is a market that I follow because I like to take notes in meetings. Sometimes taking notes helps a lot.

At some point though we have to talk about using the word Smart in front of an object when you actually mean connected. A smart pen would leap out of my hand and start writing for me. A connected pen allows me to write and puts that onto my digital device. So let’s think about that name going forward.

By the way the connected thing also goes for watches. A connected watch is able to display the information on your phone. A smart watch is able to well do things your phone can’t do and then push that information to your phone. There are more watch connections than there are true smart watches.

I would share some of my artistic renderings from the Equil pen but either they are not shareable or well not good. If you are in the market – another pen to consider.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow