Sunday, July 19, 2009

New Evernote for iPhone 3.02

More Evernote goodness! A new version 3.02 just hit the App Store. Bug fixes & speed enhancements, launch time is noticeably improved. Launching into a new note is almost instantaneous.
Another use I found for the 3GS and Evernote... Weekly or monthly recording of the odometer mileage reading on your auto(s). Just take a quick photo of your dashboard tag your note and let Evernote do the rest. You now have a mileage history at your fingertips.

-- Post From My iPhone

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Is That a Scanner in Your Pocket?

The iPhone 3GS's autofocus camera and macro capability allow you to take crisp clear pictures of all types of text documents. We are starting to see applications that take iPhone document imaging a step further. OCRTOOL ($4.99) is an application that showed up on App Store last night. The description is vague, there is no URL for the developer (listed as mkanda). I took the plunge and purchased it.

OCRTOOL leverages the camera or you can bring an image in from your photo albums, the concept is simple: take a picture of a document and OCR it on your iPhone, then copy & paste the resulting text into a document editor or email it to yourself. My testing so far, the application has failed miserably. The screenshot below shows what the results were for a 14 point single word image. Result were slightly better with 11 pt font from a memo on a 8.5x11 sheet of paper, although the output was not usable. Maybe future version will show improvement.

Don't get me wrong, the iPhone 3GS is an excellent acquisition device - yes, that is a scanner in my pocket (and/or a fax machine!), you just need to know its limitations and how to work around them. For example, if you have OCR software on your syncing computer then use your iPhone as an acquisition device, take a picture, then sync the image to your computer and process OCR using your desktop software. Or if you are interested in archiving the document for retrieval, take a photo of the document, then email it to your Evernote account and let Evernote work their OCR magic in the background and index your document for easy retrieval.

Bottom Line: OCRTOOL is not recomended at this time, but I suggest you think through how your iPhone can augment your current imaging tools and workflow.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Trying out Blogpress

Blogpress is available for $0.99 on the App Store. Blogpress offers landscape editing, picture posting and rich text formatting.
Landscape editing functions as expected, it is a great feature to have in a blogging application (iBlogger is missing it).

Adding an image is straight forward, although there is no option to rotate an image.
I was hoping that the rich text editing would offer basic formatting, bold, bullets, etc. Maybe the next upgrade. At 99 cents ( limited time price) this app is a worthy competitor.

-- Post From My iPhone

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Excellent Macworld Review of Instapaper 2.0

If you are looking for a good explanation of Instapaper, this review is worth reading. The 2.0 upgrade is very good.

Macworld Review of Instapaper 2.0

NYT Article - Organize With iPhone

There is a decent article at the New York Times today. Using the iPhone to help organize your life. The article covers To-do list managers, the author favors ReQall. Also covers file sharing and eating... An interesting mix of topics.

NYT Organize with iPhone

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Blogging from the 3GS

Blogging from the iPhone. Sure the Home Screen blog is all about getting the most out of your iPhone, so why not leverage all of these great apps and begin blogging mainly from my shiny new 3GS?
The last last post (DTG 1.1) was done using iBlogger. The plan for this post is to compose in DTG (I love the landscape keyboard), then copy & paste into iBlogger for uploading..
There are a few things I need to test with my production pipeline, such as:
Will formatting, such as bullets and bold copy over from DTG to iBlogger? [update, the answer is no... No formatting transferred and iBlogger is lacking in the formatting department.]
Are there other alternatives on the iPhone for blogging? Time to search the App Store.

Documents To Go version 1.1

Dataviz released DTG VERSION 1.1 today.
- System wide cut, copy & paste.
- Zoom editing, along with the option to dismiss the menus for more editing screen space.
- Email your word doc from within the application.
I tested all three of the above, they are all welcome enhancements. DTG is becoming a very good iPhone word processor.
Excel editing was not included in this upgrade, nor opening email attachments directly into DTG.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

ReQall 3.0 Update

ReQall the voice activated to-do list for the iPhone was updated to version 3.0 this week. The highlights of the update include:
  • Push notification - ReQall does not need to be running to receive to do reminders. This enhancement has worked flawlessly over the past few days.
  • Eyes-Free Recording - similar to the voice activation in Google's iPhone application, once ReQall is running raise the phone to your ear and it starts recording. I find that I update a lot of to-dos during my morning commute, I look forward to testing this feature.
  • Data Detectors -If your to do note has a telephone number, email address or URL in it, tap on it and you are taken to the appropriate application to make a call, send an email or surf the web.
  • Memory Maps - this is the wow feature, but not real sure how useful this is, at least for me. ReQall is integrated with maps, allowing you to see the location of your to-dos on a map.

This is a solid upgrade for ReQall, for me push notification is the highlight of this upgrade, the other popular To-Do applications have also been updated with push notification including Things & Remember The Milk. We are starting to see applications take advantage of OS 3.0.