And so the experiment begins. A few waves of good luck from the Twitter masses, a few expressions of interest in the outcomes, and one person commenting that I’ll be back on the PC before I know it (an interesting immediate misinterpretation of the word “notebook”).

I fired up Evernote, swiped the Pencil across the iPad surface and…

…. nothing. The Pencil had run out of charge. At least a Pentel gives you a running warning of running out of ink by getting progressively lighter in tone.

A quick few minutes in the Lightning socket of the iPad (see picture above. Is it just me that thinks that that looks like an expensive breakage waiting to happen?) and I was up and running. Less than a minute of charging gives 30 of use, or something like that. It’s like the old days of mobile phones.

A quick note note on the choice of software. I’m making a conscious decision to be multi-platform these days. Having been very Microsoft, I then became very Google, so I’m now trying to readdress that balance. I have an Android phone, a Windows laptop, use Chrome and Google Apps, but also bits of Office 365 and Slack and Trello and (this week at least) Evernote. Because anything that I use needs to be multi-platform and Cloud first (my only exceptions to that are in music and audio production software – namely some Windows stuff from Propellerheads, and some Korg stuff for iOS).

I’ll give Google Keep a try for more notey-notes later in the week, but I’m focusing on Evernote for now. It’s pretty good, although I think I hold a normal pen too horizontally for Pencil to work effectively. Haven’t yet explored if there are any adjustments you can make. The multi-platform/Cloud first approach has also ruled out Paper, and Goodnotes suggested by my old mucker Euan Semple.

In terms of actually noting, I’ve noted two things already. First, the ability to easily use colour in the software is interesting, but it might just be a case of me arsing about in. the fonts on the Titanic (see the example above). Much more interesting, though is mind mapping. Because with a digital tool you can zoom in to add detail under branches where the space would have been too small on paper. That might become useful… we’ll wait and see.

Evernote, though, is not a tools primarily designed around the pen(cil). It’s a very powerful tool, but drawn images are pretty dumb. Whilst I’m not sure I care too much for things like handwriting recognition, a bit more vector-style stuff (like straightening edges on lines) would be nice.

So day one completed. Didn’t write anything in the paper notepad. Did on the digital one.

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