The Livescribe Echo Smartpen is a great pen for students who want to record audio and synchronize it with their written notes. The Livescribe website contains many frequently asked questions and tutorials that can help you use pen functionality.
What you can do with Myscript, however, is search for handwritten notes or the like, which is especially handy if you’re used to Evernote. In the end, though, there’s probably no need for a full-fledged audio recording app for the Echo smartpen. The ability to listen to your recordings directly from the pen makes it a great option for those who use it. However, it is heavy and cumbersome to use, and it is a bit of a pain in the ass to write with it.
While that would probably be enough for an enthusiastic meeting attendee, Livescribe is trying to expand the usefulness of the Echo to include an app store. By accessing its desktop app, it turns the smartpen into software that synchronizes with your Echo via a Micro USB connection, which it can bring with it as a free SDK. Some developers have come up with more unusual software so that you can sketch on a string system, play a notepad on the guitar or piano, convert currencies and even play games like Sudoku.
The smartphone stylus bridges the gap between digital and analog by allowing you to turn your device into a notebook. The reusable notebook, which works seamlessly with the Pilot Frixion Pen, allows you to take notes and doodles, transfer them and email them to yourself. It is compatible with most note-taking apps and will help you put your ideas on digital paper.
Dot Paper is available at stores like Target and Wal-Mart, but you can also print your own if you have an Echo Smart Pen, Pilot Frixion Pen or Rocketbook notebook. Printing at 600 dots per inch takes about 15 seconds, and the ink dries out without connecting to the Rocketbooks pages.
To capture your notes, Livescribe’s Dot Paper also activates the tools you use to control the pen. Touch any word or diagram you scribble into your notebook, and the Echo smartpen will start playing the exact point in the lecture where you wrote your note.
While the Echo Smartpen is primarily designed to record audio from your notes, there is also an application on the Livescribe website that you can buy for it. The Livescribe Echo Pen records everything you hear, say or write, and links the audio recording to your note so all your needs can be found.
USB cable to transfer your notes and audio to your computer and automatically drag them into the Echo Smartpen app to organize them in different notebooks. Echo Desktop saves everything for quick and easy access to what matters to you, and simply shares it as a standard PDF or audio file.
Clicking on a text that contains an accompanying audio recording triggers playback, and Livescribe Desktop automatically sets the notes and tone to different colors for easy distinction. The PC version of the desktop app is unfortunately, the latter lacks the ability to pull custom notebooks together with recorded text and/or audio. However, this is not the only problem with the Echo Smartpen app, as it alerts users to Myscript instead.
Tap the stylus of a word in the note you have recorded, and it starts playing audio recordings right at the moment you wrote that note, almost by magic. Without a computer, you can also take a spiral notebook with a pen, open it, plug in headphones, take it off and go somewhere and just use your speakers. A computer is not even necessary for this process, except for backups that can go directly to Evernote, where they are then individually searchable.
The smartphone pen is a high-tech writing tool that records the spoken word and synchronizes it with notes on special paper. It is a turning point: students can record everything the teacher says and reproduce parts of it later by tapping the tip of the pen on the word on paper, and they can also record it as a direct quote. This adds another level of predictability to notes and direct quotations that is certainly unparalleled in the history of notation.
Although Echo looks and writes like an ordinary pen, it is actually a multimodal computer. An infrared camera is hidden in the tip and a microphone is integrated into the pin socket. Put it all together and you have a pen that digitally records all the handwriting at the same time.
The recordings are stored directly in the pen’s internal memory and can be played back via the built-in speakers. The recordings can also be transferred to a Mac or PC using the free Livescribe desktop software.