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Annotate PDFs on Your iPad with iAnnotate PDF

Annotate PDFs on Your iPad with iAnnotate PDF


    Back in the day, we all reviewed and edited documents with a red pen, highlighter, and sticky notes. Then came track changes and comments in MS Word or maybe you used the Review tools in Adobe Acrobat to annotate comments and edits on a PDF while sitting at your PC or Mac. Now we can use an iPad and iAnnotate PDF, a powerful alternative to GoodReader. The document reviewing process has gone from paper to PC and now to iPad without missing a beat.

    A recent update to iAnnotate PDF brings with it Retina Display support for the new iPad plus some new features making it an even more attractive documentation reviewing and annotation app.

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    iAnnotate PDF has been my tool of choice for annotating PDFs for a while now. I like reviewing documents on an iPad more than I do on a PC (My day job makes it feel like I live in MS Word track changes sometimes) because it brings together the best of reviewing PDFs and the mobility of an iPad.

    Getting PDFs into iAnnotate PDF

    I keep things simple when getting PDFs into iAnnotate PDF. Typically, PDFs I review and need to annotate come in via email where I open it in iAnnotate PDF (see Opening a PDF).

    While iAnnotate PDF does allow you to transfer files into the app using iTunes file syncing though I’ve yet to see iTunes do anything that well outside of music and videos so I am not even going to go there. I primarily review PDFs on my iPad that are mailed to me, from a web site, or that I post in my Dropbox account.

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    Tap on the PDF you want to open either in your email or in Safari. The PDF opens on your iPad screen. Tap the Arrow button on the top right side of the screen. Tap the Open In… button. From the Open In… list, tap iAnnotate PDF. Your PDF opens in iAnnotate PDF.

       

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      Opening a PDF from Dropbox in iAnnotate PDF works very similar to this process after you navigate to the file using the Dropbox app on your iPad.

      The iAnnotate PDF user interface includes an toolbar on the right side of the screen. PDFs appear in tabbed windows making it easy to access other PDFs on your iPad.

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        Annotating a PDF

        You have a full range of annotation tools which to choose from in iAnnotate PDF. Perform one of the following options to annotate a PDF:

        • Note: Tap Note. An options bar launches from the right with an option for you to change the color of the notes. Tap on the PDF where you want the note to appear. A note box appears. Type your note in the note box
        • Pencil: Tap the Pencil and the place your finger on the screen where you want to start freeform drawing. Drag your finger across the iPad screen to draw lines and circles.
        • Ruler: Tap Ruler. An options bar extends from the right side of the screen offering up options to change the color of the line; Undo the color change; Redo the color change; Erase to erase the line, and Scroll to scroll through the document.
        • Highlighter: Tap the Highlighter. An options bar extends with an option to change the highlighter color and scroll through the document. Drag your finger across the text you want to highlight.
        • Selectable Text: Tap Selectable Text. An options bar extends with options to change the color of the underlining or scroll through the document. Drag your finger across the text you want to underline.
        • Selectable Text: Tap Selectable Text. An options bar extends with options to change the color of the underlining or scroll through the document. Drag your finger across the text you want to underline.
        • Bookmark: Tap Bookmark. A bookmark appears on the current PDF page you are reading. An options bar extends with options to add a note, change color, and delete notes.

        Getting PDFs out of iAnnotate PDF

        Once you’ve completed annotating a PDF in iAnnotate PDF, you are going to want to send it on its way to the next stop in the workflow. Tap the toolbox icon on the toolbar. A new dialog box appears. Tap on Document in the top toolbar to open the Document commands. Tap E-mail PDF and Summary. A Sharing Options dialog box appears. Tap Annotated under Choose the File format to E-mail. Your iPad email opens with a blank email that has the PDF attached to it. An important item to know that a reported bug is that large PDFs (over 8 MB) may crash the app so be forewarned.

          If you don’t want to use email, you always have the option to send the annotated file back to Dropbox or a WebDAV server

          Conclusion

          iAnnotate PDF is a powerful PDF reader with annotation tools that has only gotten better with its latest release. I highly recommend iAnnotate PDF for any iPad user that has to review and comment on PDFs with any great frequency.

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          Last Updated on May 14, 2019

          8 Replacements for Google Notebook

          8 Replacements for Google Notebook

          Exploring alternatives to Google Notebook? There are more than a few ‘notebooks’ available online these days, although choosing the right one will likely depend on just what you use Google Notebook for.

          1. Zoho Notebook
            If you want to stick with something as close to Google Notebook as possible, Zoho Notebook may just be your best bet. The user interface has some significant changes, but in general, Zoho Notebook has pretty similar features. There is even a Firefox plugin that allows you to highlight content and drop it into your Notebook. You can go a bit further, though, dropping in any spreadsheets or documents you have in Zoho, as well as some applications and all websites — to the point that you can control a desktop remotely if you pare it with something like Zoho Meeting.
          2. Evernote
            The features that Evernote brings to the table are pretty great. In addition to allowing you to capture parts of a website, Evernote has a desktop search tool mobil versions (iPhone and Windows Mobile). It even has an API, if you’ve got any features in mind not currently available. Evernote offers 40 MB for free accounts — if you’ll need more, the premium version is priced at $5 per month or $45 per year. Encryption, size and whether you’ll see ads seem to be the main differences between the free and premium versions.
          3. Net Notes
            If the major allure for Google Notebooks lays in the Firefox extension, Net Notes might be a good alternative. It’s a Firefox extension that allows you to save notes on websites in your bookmarks. You can toggle the Net Notes sidebar and access your notes as you browse. You can also tag websites. Net Notes works with Mozilla Weave if you need to access your notes from multiple computers.
          4. i-Lighter
            You can highlight and save information from any website while you’re browsing with i-Lighter. You can also add notes to your i-Lighted information, as well as email it or send the information to be posted to your blog or Twitter account. Your notes are saved in a notebook on your computer — but they’re also synchronized to the iLighter website. You can log in to the site from any computer.
          5. Clipmarks
            For those browsers interested in sharing what they find with others, Clipmarks provides a tool to select clips of text, images and video and share them with friends. You can easily syndicate your finds to a whole list of sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Digg. You can also easily review your past clips and use them as references through Clipmarks’ website.
          6. UberNote
            If you can think of a way to send notes to UberNote, it can handle it. You can clip material while browsing, email, IM, text message or even visit the UberNote sites to add notes to the information you have saved. You can organize your notes, tag them and even add checkboxes if you want to turn a note into some sort of task list. You can drag and drop information between notes in order to manage them.
          7. iLeonardo
            iLeonardo treats research as a social concern. You can create a notebook on iLeonardo on a particular topic, collecting information online. You can also access other people’s notebooks. It may not necessarily take the place of Google Notebook — I’m pretty sure my notes on some subjects are cryptic — but it’s a pretty cool tool. You can keep notebooks private if you like the interface but don’t want to share a particular project. iLeonardo does allow you to follow fellow notetakers and receive the information they find on a particular topic.
          8. Zotero
            Another Firefox extension, Zotero started life as a citation management tool targeted towards academic researchers. However, it offers notetaking tools, as well as a way to save files to your notebook. If you do a lot of writing in Microsoft Word or Open Office, Zotero might be the tool for you — it’s integrated with both word processing software to allow you to easily move your notes over, as well as several blogging options. Zotero’s interface is also available in more than 30 languages.

          I’ve been relying on Google Notebook as a catch-all for blog post ideas — being able to just highlight information and save it is a great tool for a blogger.

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          In replacing it, though, I’m starting to lean towards Evernote. I’ve found it handles pretty much everything I want, especially with the voice recording feature. I’m planning to keep trying things out for a while yet — I’m sticking with Google Notebook until the Firefox extension quits working — and if you have any recommendations that I missed when I put together this list, I’d love to hear them — just leave a comment!

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