Doing Research with an iPad Part 5 mdash Working with Source Material

This is part five in this series and likely the last. The previous parts can be found here: Part 1: The Browser Part 2: Reference Material Part 3a: Sketching Apps Part 3b: Sketching Workflow Part 4: Plain Text This installment is broken into a few parts. No one in their right mind would read this entire article so I am including an index. The first is concerned with why I prefer working with PDF’s over eBooks.

FTP, Image Links and Mobile Blogging

I write many posts to Macdrifter from my iPad and occasionally my iPhone. One place where both of these tools fall down, is inserting images into a post. On my Mac, I have so much automation running that I just select the image file and hit a key combo to resize the image1, upload the file to my server and grab a url to the image. To fill the gap, I've tried some crazy stuff.

Scanner Pro Update Link

I was as excited as Eddie about this update to Scanner Pro for iOS. It's now universal. If you're still using a photocopier to digitize short documents, you are doing it wrong. Scanner Pro is very good.

CarbonFin Outliner

I like OmniOutliner for iPad1 quite a bit. It is a truly unique and powerful outlining tool. But I'm tired of waiting for better document management. Manually uploading and downloading documents to a webdav is no longer sufficient. Having a flat view to many dozens of documents is no longer tenable.2 CarbonFin Outliner CarbonFin Outliner is $5 for iPad and $3 for iPhone. If you have used CarbonFin Outliner in the past, then I may have little of value to offer you in this post.

Instapaper Offer

Following up on my article about Readability, I’ve decided to do something that costs me some dough but puts my money where my mouth is. I like Instapaper. I think it serves an important purpose. So I am going to give away 3 copies of Instapaper for iOS, out of my own pocket.1 Nice people have donated money to this site, so I’m giving some back.2 If you want a copy of Instapaper, then give me your opinion of these time-shifting reader services in the comments to this post.

Doing Research with an iPad Part 2 — Reference Material

Introduction This is the second part in a multipart series1 about using an iPad to do information gathering and processing. In the first part, I focused on using iCab as a web browser. While iCab is an excellent general purpose browser, there are some other tools I rely on for specific tasks. This post describes those applications and their strengths. Dictionary That's right, a dictionary is still one of my primary reference sources.

Mac SuperBundle Link

If you were going to buy Parallels 7 anyway, this is a good deal. If you wanted any of the other applications, then it is a great deal.

In Case You Forgot, NVAlt is Awesome

Select some text on a web page and right click and create a new note in NVAlt. The new note is added in the background and the URL is included as meta data.  Copy a URL and switch back to NVAlt. Hit shift-cmd-V to paste as a new note. The source is downloaded into a new note and Markdown-ified. So yeah, pretty crazy awesome application that they make for free.

Twitter Clients

I've been noodling away on a review of Twitter clients for the iPad, but Viticci did a great job. Read his instead. Clark seems to like the official client. For me, I've stopped using the official client because I no longer trust Twitter's design sense. I've been using TweetCaster Pro on the iPad for basic twitter use. I like the simple conversation and attachment view. On the iPhone I use Tweetbot.

WritePad Update Link

WritePad is probably the definitive handwriting recognition app for iOS. It’s been updated to version 6. It’s a very capable note taking app. WritePad supports Dropbox syncing and Google Docs access. There is also support for Spanish and French recognition (in app purchase) as well as a user dictionary and shorthand support. There’s really no training necessary although it does allow some minor tweaks to how recognition is performed.