Notability for iPad: Why it freakin’ rocks for reporters on the go

As I’ve previously divulged, I lose things.

This includes, but is not limited to: my phone, car keys, and my head, if it wasn’t attached.

Back when I first got my iPad, I did some creeping around for good note-taking apps. I didn’t to pitch the paper pad.

Thus, I found Notability. It seemed cool. I liked the idea of syncing audio with writing.

The app burned a hole in my iPad, until I tested it out this week using a $13 stylus I bought at Walmart . Below, I took notes on a mobile reporting adventure through the York Galleria Mall food court, where I graced the elderly mall walkers with my presence (blog to come, on that adventure).

Here's an iPad screenshot of the Notability interface. Here, I used the app, in lieu of paper, to interview a mall walker scared of being in York city at night.

Say, for example, I hadn’t caught that whole quote about carrying a gun. With a paper notepad and recorder, I’d have to scroll through the audio to find that conversation — a task that takes up time.

Here, I can replay the audio interview and tap on the partially written quote to hear what was being said EXACTLY as that quote was written. Saves me time on the search.

It also eliminates excuses for missing good soundbites.

This, I think, makes up for the fact that styluses are inherently a tad more difficult to write with than a normal pen. The tip mimics the thickness of your finger — what the iPad was built to recognize.

Takes some getting used to.

Notability — intended, I think, for students to organize class notes — allows you to file notes into these neat, searchable files.

Right now, I’m using the app for a weekly diary of tasks I’ve completed, from ideaLab to regular responsibilities. Helps me budget my time.

I’m also recording and note-take during hyperlocal staff meetings, and filing notes taken at different ideaLab mobile reporting stops.

Check it out:

 If I can swing it, I might not use notepads anymore.

Why would I? Here, I can easily highlight, type, erase, use different colors, etc. I can paste in pictures and send the pdfs to my email.

Or, they can be exported to Dropbox, iTunes and the like.

Try it. Let me know what you think.

3 responses to “Notability for iPad: Why it freakin’ rocks for reporters on the go

  1. Pingback: Kids say the darndest things … from MY Twitter account. #boyer101 | BY LAUREN BOYER

  2. Perhaps you can help: I haven’t been able link handwritten notes with audio (as suggested in the article). Only typed notes create recording bookmarks.

    How did you manage to accomplish this handwritten and audio sync?

  3. Pingback: NewsVrooming with the Girl Scouts at Dover Area Community Library | BY LAUREN BOYER

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