With 100 million users, Evernote is one of the most popular digital productivity apps around. But it was never designed to play nice with real paper–and the company has admitted that was a mistake. Today, Moleskine is introducing a new Evernote line of notebooks.
These Moleskines are made of paper and cloth, but by photographing them inside Evernote’s iOS app, your notes become cataloged, searchable digital content. In fact, an appointment jotted down in the Moleskine’s Evernote Event Planner calendar can even become an iPhone push notification that reminds you to show up three months later.
It’s very cool stuff that blurs the lines between our digital and analog world. If some of these ideas sound familiar, it might be because you remember Moleskine’s recently announced Livescribe notebook, which converts your notes and drawings into digital notes via a smart digital pen. The Evernote notebooks are a step less magical. The pages of each book have identifying markings that keep the order of your written notes straight, you can set an Evernote reminder simply by checking an alarm clock on the page, and you can even add “smart stickers” to tag your ideas by topic, but–and this is a significant but–Evernote requires you to photograph each page to digitize it. The Livescribe setup skips that step. (Then again, every iOS Evernote user already has that camera right on his or her phone. How many of us own a $150 Livescribe smartpen?)
While I’m not sure that Evernote and Moleskine have unlocked the holy grail of paper-to-screen interactions just yet–I admit I’m not even sure what that might be–it’s refreshing to see each company experiment, and be bold enough to bring those experiments to market.
Evernote-edition Moleskines are available now in the U.S. and U.K., starting at $12.