Friday, 24 April 2015

Notability: One of the Best Note-Taking App for Students

Notability is amazing software for taking notes; you can write plain text, annotate PDFs, and even write whole notes in handwriting. It is available for the iPad, iPhone and Mac. Throughout this post, I am talking about the iPad version, which may be slightly different to the Mac version. The iPad and iPhone version cost £2.29, and the Mac version cost £4.99.

Notability on the iPad home screen

Notability is one of my favorite apps because of its seamless palm-detection, great-looking design and its sticky-note, web-page annotation feature and also the ability to add images.

Making a subject is easy; firstly, tap the plus button at the top of the page, and then tap 'Divider' to make a divider; 'School', for example. Then, tap the plus button and tap 'Subject' to make a new notebook. If you use Evernote, dividers are like notebook stacks, and subjects are notebooks. Then, at the top right, tap the button button with a pencil to make a new note.

Notability home view
Quickly writing a quick note with Notability is quick and easy. You have the option to add text, handwriting, highlight, and use the snipping tool to move, rotate and resize objects. The rubbing tool is extremely easy to use; just a tap will erase connected ink. If I have joined handwriting, and I write 'Notability', if I used the rubber and tapped on the end of the word, 'otability' would be the result. If I did not have joined handwriting, it would delete the letter.

Rubbing out writing on a PDF
Notability also gives you the ability to add 'Media' to the notes; this includes images, web pages and sticky notes. Sticky notes can be placed anywhere on the page, and can be typed on or written on. There are four stick note types you can choose from: blank, typing, lined or squared.

Viewing a PDF in Notability
Notability also gives you the option to back up your notes to popular cloud services such as Dropbox, Google Drive and Box. I am still hoping that Notability will introduce OneDrive backup eventually. If you are a fan of Evernote, and are reluctant to purchase another notetaking app, you would be glad to know that you can easily export your notes to Evernote via Gmail and Dropbox through this IFTTT recipe.

The notes view whilst viewing a PDF
Notability also lets you annotate PDFs, which is great for proofreading and also for giving feedback. If you're a teacher, you can export PDFs sent from students into it, and write you feedback on it and then export it to a cloud service, and then email the annotated PDF back to the student. All you need is a stylus (if you want the writing to be neat) and an internet connection. When you tap on the top right, where the pages view is, you will see a section next to the pages view called 'Notes'. This shows all the pages which have annotations on them.

Viewing a note on Notability
All in all, Notability is a great tool for students and teachers (and even for people in other professions). I love its flexibility, and the ability to type and write all in the same note. I would recommend you try this brilliant app out.

Do you have Notability? Feel free to comment on how you use it, and why you like it.

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