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Photos: Livescribe Connect

Smartpens from Livescribe now have a (free) software add-on that lets you share handwritten and audio notes to a variety of sources.
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By Sandra Vogel, Contributor on
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1 of 5 Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Livescribe makes the Echo and Pulse smartpens that can capture the written and spoken word and transfer them to a computer. The company has also recently announced Livescribe Connect, a software suite that lets you share notes readily to a wide range of sources.

Photos: Livescribe

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2 of 5 Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Compatible with all Livescribe pens, Livescribe Connect sits on the desktop and allows users to send 'pencasts' from paper to a wide range of applications including Google Docs, Facebook, Evernote, iPad, iPhone, Flash-enabled Android devices and email. You can also send pencasts as interactive PDFs, so long as you're using Adobe Reader 10 or higher.

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3 of 5 Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

Once the Livescribe Connect software is configured with login information, sending a pencast is straightforward. To send an email, for example, you draw a line onto the special paper that Livescribe smartpen users write on, write the name of the desired destination and select an email address from the display on the pen.

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4 of 5 Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

You can import email addresses from other software or enter them into the Livescribe desktop software manually, whereupon they're synchronised with the pen when it's docked. You select which pages to send by tapping them; any associated audio recordings are also incorporated.

When the smartpen is next docked with your computer for synchronisation, the email is automatically sent. You can also create shortcuts to perform specific tasks — for example, 'email ZDNet'. After you've written this, the pen executes the shortcut when it's docked to your computer.

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5 of 5 Sandra Vogel/ZDNet

There are two versions of Livescribe Connect, and both are free. Connect Basic works with the Pulse and 2GB Echo smartpens. This allows you to send pencasts to a computer, Evernote, Facebook, a MyLivescribe account and mobile devices. Connect Premium works with all 4GB and 8GB Echo smartpens, adding connectors for email and Google Docs to the Connect Basic features.

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