Note Taking Technologies

Note taking apps and devices to help with taking notes

Livescribe Pen

Image of the livescribe pen

What starts on paper, doesn’t have to stay there. Livescribe smartpens bring your words & ideas into your digital world. The pen lets you write digital notes using special paper and a pen with a tiny built-in infrared camera that tracks the nib’s exact location on the page and a tiny mic that records audio as you write and plays it back later when you touch a word or sentence. It will also back up your notes to PDFs with audio.

Average retail price: €170

Online Help & Training

Echo Smartpen How to Page  includes the link to download the smartpen software – Echo Desktop

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A great, cheap app for iPhone, iPad and Mac. Records audio while you write as much or a little as required.Touch the text onscreen later and the audio from the moment the word was written plays. Combine handwriting, photos and typing in a single note to bring your projects to life. Use a wide range of note-taking and sketching tools to capture every detail. Use with a stylus for fast handwriting or a Bluetooth keyboard for touch typing. Cost €10 for the mobile app and €30 for the Mac version.

audio notes with notability


The equivalent on Android is Audionote available here

Digital Dictaphones


Students can use the digital dictaphone to record lectures, assignments and research information. Students have fuller control over the playback, they can pause and rewind much more easily than using a cassette player. This is useful for visual impaired students, those with dyslexia and learning difficulties. Digital dictaphones have the added attraction of being able to transfer recordings onto PC and even synchronise with some voice recognition software.

Average retail price : €75-€100

Audio Note taker

Image of audio notetaker screen

Audio Notetaker offers a visual and interactive form of note taking one where audio, text and images are used to create truly comprehensive notes. Instead of the single stream of information you get with standard audio, Audio Notetaker splits your recording up into individual phrases and displays them on screen as a bar. You can then organise these bars by colour coding great sections and removing not so great sections.

Average retail price : €110 / 30 day free trial available.

Online Help & training

Click this link to learn more about Audio Notetaker at the TCD  training page

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