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Dan Bricklin’s Note Taker App for the iPhone



NoteTakerDan Bricklin (if the name sounds familiar think VisiCalc) has decided to tackle one of the most difficult challenges for note taking on the iPhone platform. That challenge is being able to scribble notes with your fingers. There have been many who’ve tried before Mr. Bricklin. Being a lover of digital ink, I’ve tried quite a few, and most leave me disappointed. Bricklin’s app (by the way it is called Dan Bricklin’s Note Take App does offer some new twists that might lead to a better attempt. I say might, as I’ve just barely tried this out, so I’ll have to see as time goes along.

The big difference here is that you aren’t restrained to the small screen when you are trying to finger ink a note. If you’ve ever tried inking on an iPhone you know what I mean when I say that the small screen just isn’t suited well for this, especially if you have fingers larger than tiny. In essence the screen become a virtual screen. You write with your fingers and what you write appears in small ink behind that virtual screen. If you attempt to ink a word that is larger than the area on the screen a virtual box pops up, you continue inking in that box and your inked text keeps appearing in line as you intend it too. There’s a free lite version and the full version costs $1.99.

There are a number of controls and buttons to allow the process to work for you, and again, I’m just trying this out so I haven’t gotten too deeply into this yet.

I picked this up from Loren Heiny who has given it a more thorough going over and has quite a bit to say about it.  Bricklin has his own write up about the app here.

I’m not convinced the iPhone’s small screen is suited for this kind of note taking, but I’ll be anxious to see how I feel about this app once I’ve tested it out a bit more.



  1. C-141XLer

    12/08/2009 at 1:13 pm

    Looks nice, but I can’t find it in the App store under Dan Bricklin. Was it pulled or am I missing somthing?

    • Warner Crocker

      12/08/2009 at 1:15 pm

      I just searched under Dan Bricklin and Note Taker and it came up in both searches.

  2. C-141XLer

    12/08/2009 at 1:39 pm

    Found it under note taker, dan bricklin still does not work. Interesting, maybe different servers for different areas and they are not in sync?

    I bought it based on the 9 positive reviews – LOL. Trying it now.

  3. Sumocat

    12/08/2009 at 1:42 pm

    I found both versions on my iPhone via “Dan Bricklin”. Are you searching from iTunes or from your iPhone?

  4. C-141XLer

    12/08/2009 at 2:08 pm

    From my iPhone. Both the lite and paid version show under Note Taker, but not under Dan Bri….

  5. Rob

    12/08/2009 at 2:45 pm

    Here’s the itunes / app store link:

  6. C-141XLer

    12/08/2009 at 2:55 pm

    Well, I have the app now from my iPhone app store link using Note Taker. It’s funny that it does not show typing in Dan Bri.. As soon as I type the “i” after “Br” only dan Bridges is shown. I scrolled under Dan and Dan B and it’s just not there. I’m sure it must be a server issue and has not populated accross all servers yet with both names.

  7. Sumocat

    12/08/2009 at 3:06 pm

    Oh, I get it. You’re only looking at the quick search results. That only searches app and developer names, but Bricklin released the app under his company Software Garden and left his name out of the app’s listed name (would have been too long). You have to hit the search button to do a full search.

  8. C-141XLer

    12/08/2009 at 6:00 pm

    Your right! I did not know there was a difference.

  9. Jim

    12/09/2009 at 2:05 pm

    I am working on setting it up as a direct way to enter short data into evernote. Am having some trouble with program closing and especially trouble with it not saving page settings–e.g. default email address to evernote, getting rid of statement about being sent from this app etc.

    I use evernote for lots including GTD style lists. I want to construct a list item and email to evernote as efficiently as possible.

    The writing part is going very well espec for short items like lists.

    It is the saving, etc that I am still working with.

  10. davv

    12/10/2009 at 5:39 pm

    the app is great

    amazing to see he’s still very innovative after 30 years
    (i tried several finger note taking apps. this one is the best by far)

    added to his wiki page (with link to here)

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