A couple of changes today. First of all, an upgrade of the iPad to iOS11 version 8, which adds in a bit more support for Pencil, and then a shift over to the Microsoft OneNote tool from Evernote.

On the OS upgrade, I’m so new to the whole world of iOS that I’m struggling to see what’s different. I’m at the point still where I’m constantly confronted with “that’s not how it works in Android”, so to spot subtleties in versions of iOS is beyond me. I have found, though, that if you tap on the sleeping iPad screen with the Pencil it goes straight into an Apple notepad app. But then we’re straight back into single platform/can’t access it from any other device territory.

It’s also been a day of document review rather than meetings and note taking, so the shift to OneNote has been a little hard. OneNote is way more functionally rich than the free version of Evernote. And as I’ve been reviewing documents I imported them into OneNote and started to scrawl over them. But, and here’s the kicker, that’s great if I’m trying to express something about layout. But it’s less productive if it’s about changes to the (mostly text) content. Why scrawl a handwritten note on the page when I could just go into Google Docs and either add a text comment or actually make the amendment directly?

I’ve been on the receiving end of such inked markup in the past and it’s a monumental pain in the arse. It’s a classic case of digitising a paper process, rather than making a process digital. I’ve stopped (but as I said, if it were an issue on commenting on layout or design I can see how digitally marking up a document for amendment could be useful).

And despite the feature richness of OneNote, it crucially doesn’t natively support pencil. Evernote does. Which means that if I press harder on the screen in Evernote then I get thicker or darker lines. Whereas such pressure makes no difference in OneNote. Is that important? After but a couple of days of use already I would say yes.

It’s very subtle, but it makes a difference. Tomorrow I’ve got more notey-meetings, so I’ll continue to experiment with OneNote.

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