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Can't Search My Handwriting - Ideas?

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I'm using the Livescribe Sky Wifi pen. I've written several pages of notes which now show up in my Evernote account. I've waiting 3 days and when I search the word 'March' Evernote finds 1 instance of it. However, the word 'March' is listed on three pages. I don't have the prettiest handwriting but I'm wondering why it found it once and not the other times. I also wrote the name 'Larry' and it looks quite clear but Evernote can't find it at all.

My whole goal with Livescribe is to be able to take notes and have them backed up online so I can search and find them at anytime by date, client name, etc.

Any ideas?

 

Do I need to return the Livescribe pen?

Any other options?

 

PS. in the attachments, the March 3, 2015 can't be found. But the March 4, 2015 can be found! The word 'Larry' can't be found. 

post-250973-0-26224600-1425584320_thumb.

post-250973-0-63547900-1425584320_thumb.

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It's not the pen, it's Evernote. You have to have really neat handwriting for Evernote to recognise it. Your handwriting basically needs to look like it has been typed. Try using the Livescrige software. I have heard that has much more sophisticated handwriting recognition.

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Dipper - thanks for the reply. Evernote is the only option with the Sky Wifi pen from Livescribe.

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Oh, sorry about that. My handwriting is hideous, but I made it neater for Evernote. You could try that.

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Thanks GrumpyMonkey - the main purpose of getting the Livescribe pen was to document my notes in the cloud automatically so I can search and find them at a later date. Not to change the way I write. Was hoping the evernote OCR would work for me, so far the results aren't great.

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Thanks GrumpyMonkey - the main purpose of getting the Livescribe pen was to document my notes in the cloud automatically so I can search and find them at a later date. Not to change the way I write. Was hoping the evernote OCR would work for me, so far the results aren't great.

I agree. It would be nice, but it is unlikely to happen, so you'll have to adjust, I'm afraid. I assume they are constantly working to improve it, but after several years, my handwriting is still not recognized very easily, so I wouldn't hold your breath. One thing you could try is something like Cornell Notes, putting clearly written keywords in the margin as you go along. This would be a kind of middle ground -- you don't change all of your handwriting, just the stuff in the margins.

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Interesting idea. I'm testing just starting a page with a clear date and client name. Have to wait up to 72hrs to see if the OCR picks it up...

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Interesting idea. I'm testing just starting a page with a clear date and client name. Have to wait up to 72hrs to see if the OCR picks it up...

ocr should take a few seconds on average. at least, that is the case with me. i suppose it depends on server loads, elves, and unicorns as well. let us know how it goes.

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Evernote managed to read my handwriting on my music homework (written in Penultimate):

 

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GrumpyMonkey - LiveScribe said that free Evernote users need to wait up to 72 hours for the OCR to work properly and have the content searchable.

Dipper - How is Penultimate? Can you take notes easily? I heard that it doesn't write naturally, that there is a lag when writing on the ipad screen? Thoughts?

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I use Penultimate on my IPad Air 2 with my Bamboo 3 stylus, and the handwriting recognition works very well for me. There is no lag or anything. I love Penultimate. As you can see from the above image, my handwriting is not the best, but Evermtoe still reads it (some how, previously, it never managed to read it).

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GrumpyMonkey - LiveScribe said that free Evernote users need to wait up to 72 hours for the OCR to work properly and have the content searchable.

Dipper - How is Penultimate? Can you take notes easily? I heard that it doesn't write naturally, that there is a lag when writing on the ipad screen? Thoughts?

they probably say that because evernote doesn't promise anything with regards to the time it takes to process things. it varies, but i usually have things ocr'd in seconds. give it a try and let us know how it goes.

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Dipper - how long can you take notes for on the battery? Can you use it for 4-5 hrs each day writing on it without plugging it in? I read some negative reviews of Penultimate and how people felt the usability got worse on a recent update. Have you had any experience with that?

GrumpyMonkey - looks like the OCR is working but not 100% with my writing. I type in 'March' and only get 1 result. If I type if 'Mar' I get 3 results for 'March'. Same if I type in just 'ch'. So something in my writing isn't working properly. 

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I haven't really used it for long, but for about an hour of usage it uses about 7-8% (keep in mind that I am using an iPad from Christmas, so it might have its battery in a better condition). I usually run it with no other apps open and wifi off.

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Dipper - how long can you take notes for on the battery? Can you use it for 4-5 hrs each day writing on it without plugging it in? I read some negative reviews of Penultimate and how people felt the usability got worse on a recent update. Have you had any experience with that?

GrumpyMonkey - looks like the OCR is working but not 100% with my writing. I type in 'March' and only get 1 result. If I type if 'Mar' I get 3 results for 'March'. Same if I type in just 'ch'. So something in my writing isn't working properly.

One thing I noticed about your writing is that you use upper case (as do I), and that will cause problems (as I mentioned on my site): "In English, the printed lower-case sentences produced the best results followed by the upper-case and then the cursive." If you could provide us samples of your handwriting in a shared note, for example, we might be able to help with some tweaks.

By the way, as far as I know, Penultimate uses the same OCR process, so the results ought to be no better or worse with Penultimate, though you do remove the canning and paper variables by using it.

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I just tried to search and nothing came up. I think it's because you write in capital letters. Try making a quick note on Penultimate and see what happens (if you have an iPad).

Edited by Dipper

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All-Caps is going to be a problem, and you have some idiosyncracies with some of your letters, especially when they get a little cursive-like. It's perfectly legible for a human (my handwriting is not), but not for a computer. As far as I know, and as mentioned above, Penultimate uses the exact same OCR feature (that's why you have to connect to the cloud for OCR), but you could give it a try.

I don't know how interested Evernote is in improving their handwriting software. You could contact support with some handwriting samples and see if they'll add it in. I've raised the issue in the past, but as far as I know, no noticeable improvements have been made in the last few years. There's nothing "wrong" with it, but you'll definitely enjoy better results by following the advice I linked to above.

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 I don't have an iPad. Would buy one if I was confident that penultimate would work really well for what I need.

 

I just uploaded a new note that I wrote in lower case writing. Seems like it's getting picked up better. Do you notice that as well? Any thoughts? (same link as before)

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Lower-case handwriting tends to work better. See the link I posted earlier for more advice.

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Update: So writing in lower case definitely is working  better and getting picked up. On another note my sky wifi pen just died. Have to go replace it...

Once I do looks like I'm going to go back to writing in sentence case...Thanks for all the help y'all!

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Dipper and GrumpyMonkey - question: Everytime I take a picture on my phone with the Evernote app and it uploads it assigns a title to it automatically that is from my Google Calendar (which then also shows up in my email). How can I change that so I can control what the title is or so that it can just upload without pulling in that title from my calendar or email? Thanks!

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I think it is in your settings somewhere, or you have to remove access to calendar / location for Evernote. I forget, but I used to turn it off as well.

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