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(Archived) How do YOU use Penultimate?


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So I have Penultimate on my iPad. I think it's a fantastic idea, but I'm having a bit of trouble getting it to work like a true pad and paper. 


I can see it being extremely useful for sketches and drawings, but I work as a Programmer/Analyst so a lot of the notes I need to take are actually just hand-written text. 


I'm using a Bamboo stylus, but I can't for the life of me write anything legible, unless it's in giant letters.


Is there a more precise stylus or a different technique you guys/gals are using to write hand-written notes? 


I was in a meeting last week and someone there was writing vigorously on their iPad screen. I couldn't see if it was Penultimate or not, and I was too far away to see the stylus too. In hindsight, I should have asked this person. 

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  • 1 month later...

I would like similar feedback... I just bought a Jot Pro fine tip stylus, but still can't get legible print without writing three words to a page.  I can't seem to figure out how this would replace handwritten notes.


I love the idea... as I always have to scan my handwritten pages, but my handwritting is bad enough without making it worse like penultimate seems to do.

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I use Penultimate to take notes in meetings where using a keyboard would either be a barrier or would be awkward. I'm often at meetings where I'm not sitting at a table. I use a JotPro and a fairly narrow pen selection in Penultimate. It's still not as fine as using a pen but it's quite usable. And, even if I write a little bigger, I know I'm never going to run out of paper. The kind of notes I'm taking aren't generally terribly structured. They don't need to be tidy or formatted in any particular way. 


I also have a LiveScribe Sky. I like it a lot, like writing on paper. However, it's just one more thing to charge and carry. But, it's a good option if writing on an iPad screen isn't satisfying. 

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I've posted this elsewhere, so apologies for those who've already seen it.  But I have tried numerous styli, and finally found one called the Hand Stylus - on the recommendation by someone on this forum.  It is the finest tipped stylus that will work on an iPad (they need to be of a certain minimum size for the capacitative area to register).  It is retractable so doesn't gather dust on the tip while in your pocket.  Has a pocket clip, and is magnetic so sticks to the edge of the iPad Smart Cover if that's what you have.




They feel great to write with, although require just a tad more pressure due to the fine tip.


The other thing to look for in several of the note taking apps is the magnified view, whereby a window appears at the bottom of the screen, you write normally (i.e. quite large) in there, but the letters appear at a much smaller size up in the body of the text where you want them.  But personally, I've never been comfortable working with that method, although many of my students do.


And just for the record, I abandoned Penultimate when they introduced the compulsory full two-way sync with Evernote.  I don't use PU that way - I use it to scribble, do little sketches to explain operations to patients, etc, then delete them, among other things, and I do not want all those synced to Evernote.  And if I delete a PU note in Evernote - it disappears from PU as well.  If they bring back selective sync, I MIGHT go back to Penultimate.


In the meantime, just for your information, I went to Notability, which does pretty well everything, and of course, you can email any note straight to Evernote.  But after more recommendations from students, I switched again - to Notes Plus.  It has a phenomenal range of capabilities, does virtually everything you could wish for, and even has a built-in browser that you can slide left and right if you want to scribble some notes down regarding stuff on a web page.  Amazing feature set.


Penultimate had better be majorly fantastic to win me back, I'm afraid, with the changing to selective sync being just the first requirement now that I've been spoiled by Notes Plus.




Hope that info is useful :)

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I switched again - to Notes Plus.  It has a phenomenal range of capabilities, does virtually everything you could wish for, and even has a built-in browser that you can slide left and right if you want to scribble some notes down regarding stuff on a web page.  Amazing feature set.



Interesting. The reason that I stuck with NoteShelf for so long (until Penultimate got full syncing to Evernote) was precisely because it all it did was let me take notes. Other than some pen colors and sizes, it didn't have too many features, except the ability to export to Evernote. They've been adding more and more features, making me like it less. For me, one of the attractive qualities of Penultimate is that, other than take notes, it doesn't do much. I find it much less distracting. Notes Plus is definitely a very nice program. But, for me, too much Plus.



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Heh :)  Yes, I get the geeky gadget thing, too.  Nothing better than bells and whistles, flashing LEDs, switches, buttons, and dials.!


But the point with Notes Plus is that you CAN use it simply as a scribble pad.  All those extra capabilities seem to stay well out of the way - until you want them.  Even the toolbar is so well thought out with the touch-and-hold thing that it looks deceptively simple under "normal" use.


I should have mentioned that the built-in browser (which swipes in from the left) has several capabilities too, including select-and-copy to your notebook on the right, or even touch, hold, then "flick" to the right and a diagram, section, or whatever just gets flicked over to your notebook.  I'm finding this more and more useful as I am currently revising a whole set of teaching notes, and using Notes Plus to scribble out my outlines.  I can just circle a section I've just written then drag it somewhere else (very handy indeed), but also use the browser to look up the most recent references and flick charts and diagrams across into my outline.  That is fantastic.


Sorry if this seems like hijacking the Penultimate threads to push Notes Plus, but this was caused by the damned compulsory, non-selective syncing of PU to EN, which caused me to look elsewhere for something that would do what I needed.  And finding Notes Plus has added a lot of functionality that I am actually finding very useful, not least being that sliding browser with the ability to flick stuff from there into my notebook page.

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