Livescribe Integration With Evernote

I love it when my productivity tools work well with each other, and thanks to an update today from Livescribe, it is now easier to import notes I write with the Livescribe Echo pen into Evernote. If you are not familiar with Livescribe, they sell a couple of pens, the Echo and Pulse, that record handwriting and audio.

To record handwriting you must write on special paper that is covered with thousands of little dots so small that you barely see them, but the camera in the pen sees the movement through the dots and records the movement as your handwriting. The pen also has a microphone to record audio and the software synchronizes what you are writing to the audio so that when you play it back you hear what was spoken at exactly the same time as when you were writing. Combining audio and handwriting is great for taking notes during presentations or lectures, which is why the Livescribe pens are popular amongst college students and business people.

All of your handwritten and audio notes are stored in the Livescribe Desktop software and you can share notes by exporting them into PDF and image files, which you could then e-mail or store in Evernote. The latest version of the Livescribe Desktop software for Windows (there is also a version for OS X) now includes Evernote as a sharing option. When you click Share and select With Evernote, you have options to share the entire notebook or just the page. I was confused the first time that I tried sharing with Evernote because the Pencast dialog appears with the Share button grayed out. Before you can send the page to Evernote you need to enter a title for the page in the Pencast Name field. I think Livescribe ought to create a specific dialog for sharing with Evernote to make it obvious what you are supposed to do.

Pages that you select to share with Evernote are exported into PNG image files and then automatically uploaded to your Evernote web account. You then synchronize the Evernote desktop software with your account to get the note into your Evernote notebook on your computer. Evernote does character recognition and indexing of handwriting in images so that you can search for what you write. As an example of how Livescribe stores notes in Evernote, I have posted my notes from the Windows Phone 7 launch into my public notebook. You can see how well Evernote’s character recognition works by entering “wonderfully” without the quotes in the search box.

If you are interested in getting your own Livescribe pen, you can find them online and at Best Buy starting at $129, and you can purchase notebooks in a variety of sizes.