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My “convenient productive equipment”, in the past five years, many changes have occurred, from the extreme portable, and then emphasize the timely productivity, there seems to be no perfect option. Despite this, I still explore a self-choice – iPad +  Pencil + Cloud, which chooses to take into account portable, reading, annotation, and lightweight demand.

My electronic note change

From 5 years ago

My first device is iPad mini 2, the main purpose of the time is to read video entertainment, and read PDF books than the screen. For reading, gradually, I found that it can’t take this heavy – vertical screen, the screen is too small, read the eyes, horizontal screen, only one page of the 2/3 of the text, and turn the page, fast index It is not convenient, although software like GoodReader can make up for this lack, compare Kindle, is also a big progress, but it is still more than the experience of books.

all in all,

Simple iPad mini, in addition to portability, in addition to portability, compare the feeling of reading, the gap is still too far

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

Therefore, in order to reproduce this “feel”, it highlights the biggest advantage of mobile devices on the basis of its basis: portable, I have been transformed into two lines.

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

Transformation 1: Big screen!

For the complete reading experience, I chose a larger 9.7-inch iPad Air. This experience is really a lot, and it is possible to complete the A4 book in the vertical screen. It can be more fluent through the goodness of GoodReader. The flip page experience.

In terms of current, iPad Air 3’s larger screen, or IPAD PRO’s rounded screen, after solving the problem of previous IPAD, while ensuring lightweight, while ensuring a better experience. Of course, in addition to the AIR and PRO product line, there is a more cheap option: iPad 2018, no adaptive screen refresh rate, no automatic ambient light adjustment, not full fit screen, but compared with a low quality tablet Despite non-full fit, in the interest screen state, the iPad 2018 screen is also black, its biggest shortcomings, probably the black side in the screen is more remarkable when presenting the light interface. However, this is also possible to be a advantage: In all iPad product lines, only IPAD 2018’s non-full-fitting screen can do not produce water ripples when pressing the screen.

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

Transformation 2: Add only pen!

The book is not “only” used to read, annotations and notes are essential. The annotation can help see the focus, notes can help organize logic and ideas. Complete “learning” not only includes a thick book, but also includes a pen.

At the earliest time mentioned in this article, I haven’t appeared in Pencil. At that time, it was the PAPER 53, using Bluetooth connections, with pressure, but because too expensive gave up. In order to do the “can use” level, I chose Adonit Jot Pro capacitor pen, no battery, passive, no pressure, head top with a plastic piece, second-hand spent 90, later, because of this plastic The film, so I spent 40 bought this plastic piece.

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

The overall use of this pen is still possible. When there is a pen, I mainly use GoodReader and NOTABILITY to read the document and do notes, and even move the textbooks of each department to the nut cloud, and synchronize directly through GoodReader.

At this time, I used the iPad Air + capacitor pen to do some notes, read some books, but later these notes were distributed in my nut cloud folder (GoodReader supported synchronization to the WebDAV network disk, NOTABILITY, To this end, I also spend money to start these two software).

Overall, such a combination is unsuccessful, I will want the reason for the time, now I feel, because I have read some books, I have made some notes, then these PDF notes are cured here, and there is no source for multiple sources. Or the knowledge from multiple fields for effective integration. In other words, I need a notebook that can, support, which allows the hierarchical to modify, organize, split, and split organizations to internalize.

Hardware and software selection

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

In terms of hardware, I spend these years, in order to make a “paper pen” experience, and abandon the shortcomings of paper and pen, make full use of the advantages of electronic devices, IPAD +  Pencil may be a better choose.

Advantages of iPad

The iPad’s advantage is that IOS ecology, Apple-based development kits, various programs can focus on building products that can enhance the user experience on a full hardware abstraction, so various note software is endless, I have tried a lot, like NOTABILITY , GoodReader, Goodnotes, OneNote, Bear, Marginnote P, Marginnote 3, Memo, etc. have their own irreplaceable advantages, some features are particularly useful in certain notes software, such as NOTABILITY recordings + handwriting positioning technology , GoodNotes’s notebook technology, internote cross-platform and the idea of ​​notes, grade finishing mode, etc.

Advantages of Pencil

Among them, the advantage of Pencil is very simple. It is more like a pen, with a memo to double-click the screen to record the notes, and cooperate with a variety of software to use your finger touch, but only use  Pencil to comment, believe me, this experience when you Once you start your habits, you will never go back.

 Pencil is not a replacement of a finger or a mouse, but a replacement of true pen. This sentence is implied:  Pencil design is not to replace fingers, so the gestures such as multi-function is not recognized in the iPad, nor to replace the mouse because it is not to express this purpose, but In order to “trajectory” (and the mouse effect is similar in this process, the application of the input method in the input method, fast moving the cursor select word, moves to, and box selection, these actions are good at the mouse).

Electronic note

Despite this, the above philosophy is actually suitable for various systems, such as Surface + Pen, Android Table + Pen, just its experience may be slightly poor, the ecology is not perfect, choose less, but as an alternative, or have the rest of the needs, Can be used as a good solution:

The key is “The trajectory of simulated paper, reading and pen, and uses electronic portable, easy to modify”.

Choose the right learning software

For this purpose, the software under the iPad is not perfect. NOTABILITY does not support fast interception content and then shared output (the latest version has been supported, but only ink is present, only ink is selected, and GoodNotes directly supports the screenshots The current selection area). The brain map formed by Marginnotes is too stiff, form, and is not flexible. GoodReader is very common for ink algorithms, and OneNote is also true. Moreover, PDF Expert is simple but anti-human, mentally and the same reading experience, can not hide toolbar, cropping is inconvenient, open big files are not smooth, synchronous does not display progress, directly default change automatic complete upload (500M more than 500M, very inconvenient ), Add a bunch of functions and read-independent features, occupying the UI interface, does not support customization, and support the writing of ink.

However, things are also relative. For example, GoodNotes supports excellent ink, supports intercepting ink and PDF pictures, easy to sort out to OneNote, which is convenient to record meetings and classrooms, easy to locate voice and content location. Marginnote is very friendly for translation. OneNote’s multi-level note model, cross-platform synchronization capability, support for text and ink, in-depth and vision of electronic paper (unlimited paper boundary).

GoodNotes supports sends screenshots to other applications

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

Marginnote supports automatic typography

Choose a suitable finishing software

Workers must be a prostitute, and separate learning and finishing is one of my important choices. The key issue is that the learning form of different sources is different. It has different needs, requires different environmental and tools to greater its role, and organize and require a stability, requiring all things to put all things. Save and easy to check and change.

For the finishing software, better is OneNote and Impression notes, cross-platform capabilities. OneNote is highlighting the code highlights, the domestic OneDrive personal version of the synchronization is slow, Impression note paying, and the MarkDown supports poor, the concept is behind. Despite this, OneNote is still in many other notes software. It is difficult to see its tops: web, windows, macos, android, iOS cross-platform and synchronization, support handwriting and ink, support multi-stage grouping, convenient to organize and query, Deep, paper is unlimited, so it is very suitable for painting, writing notes.

Construction of note system

The figure above is a brief description of my role in electronic notes.

Requirements for notes

I have the need for electronic notes, mainly consisting of 3 points:

As much as possible, you can see your own notes.

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

This requires the note program to have the ability to export PDF and have cloud synchronous to save PDF. At the beginning, I chose NOTABILITY and GoodReader belong to this class. PDF Readers on Mac and PCs belong to this class.

As much as possible, you can edit your own notes, including handwriting and typing.

This requires that the software can cross the platform and support handwritten and typing, cross-platform preferably include Macos, Windows, Web, Linux (web cover), IOS, Android, can do this, the best, only Microsoft’s OneNote .

Support independent iPad, MacOS, Windows work

That is, it is best to support independent workflows in various platforms. To do this, there is a requirement for platform system capabilities, such as ipados sprinkles, and scraping and dropping of the split screen , I am using a better thing that NOTABILITY (the latest update version), goodNotes. Marginnote can synchronize iCloud with the MAC version, and it is also possible to meet this needs. OneNote is responsible for receiving notes from various software learning, ultimately summarizing and finishing.

Realization of note system

According to the above concept, I use IOS Ecological Software + iPad +  Pencil + OneNote to build their own electronic note platform. Compare the previous system, the current system is fully saved in OneNote, convenient to view and write and typing modifications. (For the deletion of modifications is an important reason for the failure of the last system).

The illustration of I have a brief description of the use of IOS ecologies.

In short, it is:

Tail: Planning and Synchronization

Select Microsoft to-DO

For the plan, I started using Outlook Exchange, which can be synchronized for most smartphones, for iOS and MacOS, Windows can also make a reminder synchronization. Later, after all the equipment moved to Apple Ecology, it used ICLOUD’s reminder and calendar, which supported better for SIRI and address fence, but comparing Exchange did not have a significant advantage.

Later, it was gradually switched to Things, and it was most attracted to my place lied that the small components on Watch were expressed by a ring, and it was very happy to look at the ring every day. In addition, in the Mac, IPAD, IPHONE, the small components are also very easy to use, the software interaction is also good, the GTD process is not missing: inbox, today, recent, future, plan, generally good – except every day I Don’t complete your own plan.

I rarely open Things, because when you have not finished today, it will be automatically pushed to tomorrow. Over time, it has accumulated a bunch of matters, and he didn’t want to see it. In addition, there is a problem with the annual thing that uses a ring. Its and fitness goals are different, the latter requirements are only from themselves, and things are not just a person’s business, with more uncertainty.


This situation until I reap back Microsoft to-Do I have improved.


我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

I have been trying to use new reminders, such as sorted3, Omnifocus, wonderful list, etc., the wonderful list is the only hope that I feel that I can use – I have been acquired by Microsoft, I can directly integrate Exchange, cross Platform is very good. Later, this program was changed to Microsoft Microsoft to-Do, I started using this software.

The first feeling of Microsoft to give people is simple. In fact, I feel about it every day or – simple. Therefore, I have given up this guy many times many times. Know that a day in an article sees the Microsoft Office Support automatic suggestion every day, I feel that this feature may have its own consideration, so I think I will try it.

I won’t say that I am because I know that Microsoft spent hundreds of millions of dollars acquired a wonderful list, then doing such a simple thing, I feel that it is incredible to use.

The original wonderful list is also designed according to GTD

When you have accumulated a few days, you will gradually discover how much this bulb button is used.

In short, Microsoft’s model is still based on a list, and each list contains some reminders, and the list can be shared, this is not surprising. The reminder can include deadline and reminder time, as well as distribution processing, notes, etc. Similar to GTD, Microsoft has included time-based classification, and divided the matter in another dimension to today, plan, important, and me sharing, but also different from GTD, it is more concerned about today and plans, not Detailed is divided into today, tomorrow, the future, may like this. In short, the two dimensions come from the list of task-based attributes and time based on importance.

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

On this basis, the “Today” dimension is focused, and the future plan is automatically completed according to the past task, and the future plan is automatically listed in the suggested list, and then let you choose, add it to today, then Finish. This way is very suitable for a lot of things to do, can effectively focus on the current task, when all tasks are completed, re-click the bulb button, you can reorder and recommend things that you can do next. This concept is very good. Because things are never finished, our attention and energy is limited, so let users have the ability, confident, be happy to complete the task, with a sense of use of accomplishment is the most important thing.

To put it bluntly, it is more general list, the core is to handle the task in the stack in order, not directly to you, the deadline is divided into expired, no plan, throw it to GTD time dimensions In the box. Based on this concept, the “Today” every day will be automatically emptied. You only have to choose a suggested item by clicking on the bulb button, which is like we arrange the task from the inbox in the GTD to give yourself, but Microsoft is only distinguished today, important, The GTD distinguishes more in time dimensions.

GTD and Microsoft have done the idea of ​​ideas, so for those who do not have on time, it is also treated separately. For Things, it will be pushed by default to the next day, waiting for you. This is not small, while Microsoft is directly emptied, requiring you to re-select it with new matters, which greatly slows down the psychological burden – ie, as shown below:

No matter which point of view, Microsoft’s treatment concept is more advanced, and for Exchange Synchronous Support (cross-platform capabilities), SIRI’s bonus is more useful.

PS. For MacOS and iOS, the support is not good, and the Watch does not support, the software UI is also simpler, which is its shortcomings.

PS. Apple’s reminder on iOS 13 and Microsoft’s work has a wonderful work:

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

OneNote synchronization

When an attachment and a picture, the OneNote note will become bigger, and it will eventually do a note 1g, so synchronization is a problem. In the morning, you can synchronize through the nut cloud, then use the local notebook, but automatic Microsoft will “local notebook” as a Office 365 advanced feature (need to charge), and the Mac’s OneNote, iPad’s OneNote does not support the open notebook from the outside. So only use the onEDrive to synchronize inside.

我的电子笔记进化史——使用 iPad + Apple Pencil 学习指北

OneNote’s synchronization is conducted through OneDrive, but does not allow users to come into contact with the file itself, open oneDrive only one point to link, can not download backup, the experience is not good. However, the solution also has, using OneNote 2016 and the following versions, you can save the online note to the local, and also support local notes with oneDrive.

OneNote’s note synchronization speed is also a big problem. I tried oneDrive personal non-365 version, very poor speed, Onedrive Business, OneDrive Business, is more poor to OneNote 2016, and I can’t find an account. However, the oneNote for Windows 10, Mac, iOS version OneNote, the synchronization speed is indeed very fast, but it is also expensive. Later, it is the global version of OneDrive for Business, which is said that the server is in Hong Kong, the speed is still, using the edu.cn account to apply for the Office 365 educational version in China, if the school does not buy an account, then there is only one T at OneDrive For Business is useful, OneNote can synchronously collaborate.