Despite writing about Apple's iPad -- repeatedly -- I've been holding off on getting one. On my wish list: the ability to use a stylus. And while there are a few iPad styli out there, it's hard to beat the feeling of real paper. As someone who does a lot of freehand writing (my first draft of Man-child, for example, was freehanded in a notebook), I've been considering a [easyazon-link asin="B003RAE19Q"]Livescribe[/easyazon-link], which is popular with the entrepreneur set but seems a bit primitive since the dawn of the iPad. Now Wacom has join the paper-to-digital party with a new product named the "Inkling," and watching the video demo, I can't help but think of storyboarding:
When you're done, you can plugin (why not transfer over Bluetooth, I wonder?) the Inkling to your Mac or PC and open your drawings -- as tweakable vectors -- in Photoshop, Illustrator, or Autodesk Sketchbook. My main question at this point is how good it is for handwriting recognition (in addition to drawing capture). But for storyboarding or shot diagrams, this looks pretty handy, right? I mean, you can do layers on paper. Haven't seen that before.
If you're on Android, also see the Apen. But there's a reason Wacom is the best-known stylus company -- when it comes to drawing and freehand writing, there are a lot of intangibles (weight, balance, friction, pressure sensitivity, etc.). We'll see how well the Inkling works when it hits store shelves in mid-September for $200.