I love gadgets and it’s difficult for me to know in advance if a gadget will be one in a long list of “bright shiny objects” which I buy, adore for a few days and then relegate to some dust-catching shelf. But the Livescribe pen system is a keeper.
I don’t know about you, but as much as I am hooked on computers, and try to keep all of my notes about things on my computer, I still pick up a pen or pencil when the phone rings and jot notes on any available piece of paper. And when I’m at someone else’s office, I do the same. And then I lose the notes, or keep them but can’t find what I wrote. Or I find that I have 10 different notes listing similar information about 10 different clients and I don’t know which notes refer to which client.
A writing tablet might help, but there’s something that makes my hand gravitate to either a computer or paper and pen–nothing in between. And that’s when the Livescribe shines.
What this doohickey does is allow you to pick up a pen, write on a piece of paper and then when you return the pen to its little cradle, everything you wrote is uploaded to the Livescribe software (or to email, google docs, Evernote etc.) where you can sort it, search on it, and save it forever.
It also allows to make audio recordings your meetings and even book mark important points that correspond to note you’re taking.
The system includes a pen, that looks somewhat like an old fountain pen, special notebooks of various sizes, a docking station and software.
The pen comes in 2Gig, 4Gig and 8Gig models. I’ve been using the 2 gig model for a few months without archiving and haven’t run out of memory but I don’t use the audio recording feature. If you plan on recording things, I would get more memory.
If you can’t stop using pen and paper, I think the Livescribe is a great way to go.
(Originally published in July.)