The pen is smartier than the sword

 NYT: The annotated smartpen

During the past year I got to work on the launch campaign for Livescribe’s new Echo smartpen. Very simply, it is a digital sound recorder in a pen that syncs your written notes with the recorded audio. It’s great for people like me who take lousy notes. I use mine all the time, especially when I’m interviewing someone, and it has helped me a ton. And the capabilities go far beyond what I’ve described. For one thing, you can upload your handwritten notes and the matching audio to review them on your computer. You can perform word searches on your notes—it reads your handwriting. And there’s an open API, so lots of people have written apps that extend the functionality into language translation, music education, games, etc. There’s probably more computing power in one of these pens than there was in my first Mac. 

So it was great to see an article about Livescribe and the Echo smartpen in yesterday’s special education issue of the NYT Sunday Magazine. Nice people, great product. 

NYT: The Pen That Never Forgets