So how can you take handwritten notes in a digital world? Well, first, you need a device with a pen i’m using the surface pro, which is an ideal device to take notes with because of the detachable design and the great pen experience. The first step is to have your pen handy on the surface pro. The pen attaches magnetically to the left side so that it’s ready when the need to take notes, appears when you’re taking notes fold the keyboard underneath and lay the device flat. You’Ll be able to rest your hand on the screen, and that gives you the leverage and fine control that you need to write properly. You won’t be able to do that if you have your device standing up, so this is important. Having the device flat is a really good way to be transparent and open in a meeting and to minimize the potential for distraction. Don’T worry the keys on the keyboard and the trackpad are all off in this mode. Now that we’re set up ready to take notes, the question is: what app to use i’ve been taking digital notes since 2001, and i recommend onenote. There are two versions of onenote currently on surface and you can use either or both of them in the not too distant future, though they’ll effectively merge back together, but for this video we’ll use the onenote desktop app. That looks something like this we’re going to use. This app because it has some very helpful and unique tools built in i’ve, asked a lot of people why they take notes, especially in the work meeting setting.

Most people take notes to remember to gather action items and to keep a record of the meeting in a class setting. You’Ll probably also take notes to remember things, to reinforce and absorb concepts to flag questions and items for further revision. Research and study, so let’s have a look at how you can do this in onenote. If you’ve never used, onenote check out our onenote playlist linked below to get to know it better. First create a page. A page in onenote is an infinite space that starts from the top left corner. This might be a challenging concept at first, but over time, you’ll come to appreciate the unlimited space. You can put some lines onto your page if we prefer click on view, then rule lines now that you’re ready to take notes. You can just grab your pen and go but before you do take two more steps to minimize distraction. Number one turn on quiet hours. In windows, this stops windows, notifications from popping up on the screen and number two turn your device around into the portrait mode, onenote switches to full screen mode and gives you a nice blank page to work with. There are many note taking methods and systems that you can find online and learn about, for example, there’s cornell box method, flow notes, outlining mind, mapping charting and sketch, noting to name just a few. Whatever note taking method, you use bear in mind that note, taking is a visual and spatial process and taking notes on a device like surface can really enhance the strength of visual and spatial connections.

To your notes, personally, my method varies between an outlining style and a free flow mind, mapping style in free flow. I write down a key idea and highlight it or circle it. Where i can, i might draw something to help it stand out and describe it visually. Then i start working around it with subtopics and details that i find important if there is a digital asset that i can use, i copy and paste that into my notes could be a powerpoint slide could be a page from a document or just a picture. This way i can combine digital and hand drawn content all in the one place, because onenote has an unlimited canvas. I don’t have to worry about running out of room and when i do cramp myself in, i can use the lasso button on the side of my pen to grab some content and move it to give me more space. As i go, i’ll highlight circle underline or mark the things that need to stand out for me and if i have an action, i’ll mark that for follow up in this version of onenote, you can flag a task directly into your microsoft to do app via outlook. The task that is created automatically converts your handwriting to text and links back to the exact spot on your page that it came from so it’s a brilliant way to keep track of action items that you collect in meetings. There’S more on this in our onenote series that we’ll link below try taking notes at your next meeting or class with the surface pen.

It won’t feel natural at first because it’s quite different to writing on paper. But over a week or two of trying you’ll become more comfortable with the device, the software and the idea of taking notes on a screen and don’t be discouraged. If you find yourself going back to pen and paper from time to time, taking notes on a computer is not as simple as taking notes on paper. So it takes some effort to master and if you do find yourself taking a step back to old ways, revisit your goals for digital notetaking, for example, your goals might be to have all of your notes in one place: accessible, shareable and searchable from anywhere on any Device or to collaborate more with your colleagues or to improve your memory and understanding those are all goals that can benefit from using a digital pen and remember the things that you can’t easily do on paper. For example, quick erasing instant cut and paste changing colors and options accessing your notes from anywhere working over the edge of the page, creating instant shapes, combining digital and handwritten content together, searching your handwritten notes, collaborating with others and it’s likely that some of all of those Things could really streamline and improve the way you work so keep those possibilities in mind. Give it another go, as you combine note, taking and other tools into your digital productivity practice, you’ll start to realize the benefits and it will become a natural part of your routine.