Gadgets | Technopolis

Livescribe Pulse Smartpen

Now it’s possible to record board meetings with a single pen

Livescribe Pulse Smartpen

Image: Hugh Threlfall

September 11 2009
Jonathan Margolis

This clever new pen is a complicated concept to get your head round. I don’t have the space – or the head – to go into it in detail. The grandchild of similar gadgets from the 1990s, it is described at length in various American reviews from when it was launched over there recently.

The essence is that the pen stores your handwriting as you write it and also links stereo audio recordings contemporaneously with your writing. I can see how this would be great for board meetings, and users report that the stereo is really useful as it helps recreate the whole board table experience so you can tell precisely who was growling their dissent as you were scribbling. The Pulse also has some amusing gimmicks – such as playing notes from a virtual piano you draw in dull meetings.

It works and works well. The problem for me is that it’s so fat it’s like writing with a Dreadnought submarine – although to be fair, it’s not much bigger than a big Montblanc. Nice technology, and you may love it.

See also

Livescribe, Pens