First Look: CourseNotes for iPad
"I think the most exciting thing about the iPad is that it's like the iPhone but it's bring it into new areas, where the iPhone wasn't practical," Klein told me over the phone. "Education is a perfect example of that. The iPhone OS will be a great platform for taking notes but the iPhone form wasn't there." With the iPad-based CourseNotesApp, now it can be.
Looking through the announced feature set, I was really impressed with how the app added built-in sharing over e-mail and Bluetooth/WiFi. Learning isn't always a solo experience and the ability to share notes can help students pick up on points they might have missed on their own. "We're looking towards adding more collaborative features [in the future]," said Klein.
"I think we've got a clear vision moving forward," Klein told me. "We've seen other notes apps out there, and we're the only ones heavily going the academic route. In fact, There are many different niches out there, and we've seen some great [notetaking] ideas that we really like, but nothing that's targetted specifically towards students. We made a conscious decision not to make a more general app, to make it the best experience for students."
Features still waiting in the wings include drawing and image support, voice notes, and improved assignment tracking. Those features remain in development. Klein told me, "We working on the new features, but like most iPad app developers, we're focusing on the initial release and getting approved for that." Getting the app through initial approval and into users' hands has been their primary goal.
CourseNotesApp isn't limited to a student's academic work. It can be used for general list making as well. You can build shopping lists, to do items, and more. "Students do have other note taking needs," Klein added. "We do want to make it a one stop shop for that sort of thing."
I'm hoping to try the app out myself once the iPad launches, at an introductory price of $4.99.
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