Craft vs Penbook
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Craft is the strongest 1.0 note-taking app I’ve ever used. It offers a thoroughly native experience, taking advantage of all the best system features across its respective platforms, while also retaining the power and versatility of modern web-based services like Notion. Real-time collaboration is an especially exciting feature, and I love that even if someone doesn’t have a Craft account, they can add comments to your notes through public webpages.
It is a device on which I can rely regardless of where I am or the time of day I require it. It makes it easier for me to concentrate on the subject at hand. Because a Craft note or document may accurately represent my digital identity in a manner in which I am content for it to be viewed, I have no qualms about sharing it with anyone. Craft's structuring capabilities, which include pages, cards, and toggles, enable me to write longer documents of five pages or more in a way that makes me feel in control of the situation and makes it easier for me to see what I'm doing. This is made possible by the fact that I can use different organizational methods. The fact that I enjoy using it is the primary factor that sets Craft apart from other contemporary tools for increasing productivity for me. Other tools may do their intended functions, but using them can be quite irritating. People are able to feel the love and attention to detail that was put into the development of Craft, which is something that we see reflected in the response from our community. Because Craft already exists, I no longer begin each day with dread, dreading the location where I would be spending the majority of my working day. This is because Craft already exists. Now that I've had some rest, I feel ready to tackle the day's tasks of thinking, writing, and speaking in Craft. Craft is one of my favorite places to spend the day. To put it another way, the "how" is equally as important to me as the "what," and the need to find a solution to this issue was arguably one of the primary motivating factors behind why I began working on Craft.
Penbook is a versatile notebook app that can be used for note taking, planning, drawing up sports plays, and more. It has an easy-to-use interface that's customizable. Its drawing options tick all the boxes and make it easy to create content which you can then export as PDFs. The only real drawback is the relativey high price of $9.99 when the app isn't on sale. Penbook has a nice feature set but if you don't need to use all of its features, there are cheaper alternatives. But if you want to take advantage of Penbook, you can get it for free until March 14th.
On Live Paper with Penbook, write organically using your Apple Pencil. Over 300 different types of stationery are available to help you create the ideal notebook. Then, fill it with your thoughts, ideas, notes, plans, and ambitions using the best digital inking technology. The Live Paper from Penbook is far more intelligent than regular stationery. Plan your life using a monthly planner that displays a real calendar, plan your day using a day planner that informs you of the time, and track your dietary intake using a food diary that recognizes the day of the week. Give your notebooks vibrant covers with entertaining artwork, and share them so your notes are always nearby. FEATURES • Live Paper, the innovative stationery that makes advantage of the iPad and iPhone's intelligence. • There are more than 300 different styles of planning, scientific, and academic stationery. • Use your finger, Apple Pencil, or stylus to write intuitively. • You can create an infinite number of original note covers. • Look for certain words or phrases in your handwritten notes. • Use shape recognition to quickly and precisely shape your strokes. TRADITIONAL STATIONERIES With Penbook, your iPad or iPhone may become a magic notebook thanks to its extensive range of stationery that can be customized: • Blank stationery with a selectable margin and an optional date • Variable density ruled paper • Graph paper with four square-size possibilities • Squared or isometric dotted stationery (offset) • Stationery for cross-referencing with adjustable margins and density • Four layout possibilities for the to-do pages • A monthly habit journal for keeping track of objectives, streaks, and behaviors • Day planner paper with three layouts, a live-updating timeline, and a calendar. • Weekly scheduler paper with a time and date stamp. • Monthly calendar paper that displays you the following day's events and maintains track of the present day • Yearly stationery for a detailed look at the upcoming 365 days • Cornell paper, which makes for ideal study notes. • Séyès (French ruled) paper • A penmanship worksheet • Stationery for spreadsheets to be written by hand • Polar graph paper for radial data charting • Semi-log and loglog papers for exponentially growing or decrementing data • Stationery with triangles that are isosceles (75-75-30) or equilateral (60-60-60). • Perspective paper with the option of 1, 2, or 3 vanishing points • Note-taking spaces and device stencils on developer stationery • Three-frame aspect ratio paper for storyboards • Variable density engineering paper • Chemistry paper for drawing molecules quickly • Music staff paper with connectable staves as an alternative • Tablature paper that includes chord diagrams and vocal parts USE PENBOOK TO ITS FULL EFFORTS You are free to use all of Penbook's writing and stationery tools in a single notebook for as long as you desire. To create and export an infinite number of notebooks, access new stationery and covers as they are created, and receive regular software upgrades, upgrade to Penbook Premium. Penbook Premium can be purchased as a one-time (lifetime) in-app purchase or as a yearly subscription. You can start using Penbook Premium for free with a 7-day free trial when you decide to upgrade with a yearly membership. You won't be charged if you cancel during the trial up until 24 hours before it ends. When your free trial expires, your credit card will be charged automatically for the yearly subscription if you don't cancel. Your Apple ID account will be charged when the purchase is confirmed. Unless the subscription is cancelled at least 24 hours before to the end of the current period, it renews automatically. Within 24 hours after the current period's expiration, your account will be charged for the renewal. After making a purchase, go to your account settings on the App Store to manage and cancel your subscriptions.
Craft was a little bit hard to understand at first (that's on me--they explain everything very well), but once you get the hang of it, suddenly you have a place where you can truly organize your notes, thoughts, life goals, to-dos, all in one app. On top of this, you can layer this organization to your heart's content--if you're a creative type, you can have a "creative" folder with a "lyrics" subfolder with "melancholy" and "funny" subfolders, as well as a "sources of inspiration" subfolder with "quotes" and "aesthetic choices" subfolders within that. Just examples! Moving between these folders is super easy, so it's quickly turned into my personal little hub for all of the ideas I randomly come up with. More than that, it's fairly simple searching things so that if you're ever in a creative rut, you can pull ideas from when you weren't. Honestly I don't think I've scratched the surface of what this app can really do, but I'm really happy I came across it. Beforehand, I was just using my phone's Notes app, and while it was easy enough getting my thoughts down quickly, finding them again or being able to connect them to other thoughts was basically out of the question. Best part (although pretty common for note-taking apps) is that I can write stuff down on my iPhone while out and about, and then expand on those ideas later on my computer--very seamless in that regard!
Took me awhile to grab onto Craft despite all of the buzz, and now it has become my essential app, especially with the recent calendar and daily note integration. This fits the way I think/operate, and my most productive workflow so well, as it has become a place where I can keep a daily log of journal reflections, tasks, phone calls, meetings, etc, while also giving me easily accessible and connectable spaces to dive in and focus on projects, brainstorm, keep and plan long-term someday tasks and keep everything organized. It helps me think, plan and write, which is your mission.....but it really DOES help me do all of that! My only request is for a way to make the app text font size larger and easier to see. The control plus option that I usually use to do this currently functions to transform the text into larger bold headings, rather than to simply make the text larger so that it is easier to see. I can increase font size on the web app using this shortcut, but the web app still lacks many of the app features. For aging eyes looking at a laptop screen on a lap, for example, a way to make the font size larger and easier to see would be so appreciated!!
I'm a long-time user of Evernote who's constantly searching for a less problematic writing app. For the past 8 months, Evernote has been troublesome, including syncing problems, spinning disk issues when opening the app, disappearing files and other issues. The developers have also added a bunch of nonsense that NO ONE was requested, such as a task function and calendars. Craft is the closest I've found to a solid app that could replace Evernote. It is highly capable, syncs nicely and has a solid preferences menu. It also looks loverly -- the developers have obviously put a lot of care and attention into the app. It also starts up quickly, since it's built in native apps and not some third-party platform like Evernote uses that makes it work more like a web app. The deal breakers for me with Craft were the lack of tags (which I've come to rely on in nearly all my photography and writing work), the fact that it won't work outside of the Apple ecosytem (I have an iPhone 12 Pro Max and a Samsung Galaxy Fold 2) and the lack of tables. If you can live without these elements, Craft will suit you well. As a bonus, Craft costs roughly half of what Evernote is charging annually.
This is my first time doing digital notes for school so I was on the look for a note taking app. I tried the free version before committing and I am obsessed with taking notes on it. I like that variety on pens types you can use and the ability to select specific shades of color. I bought the yearly subscription since unlimited notebooks and pdf downloading was a must to me. I also love that besides note taking I can do my journaling here using the different washi tapes, already made pages and fonts. The pre made notebooks are also very handy and I like the selection of pages depending on the purpose of the notebook; notes, journal, calendar (weekly, monthly and even yearly), diagrams and drawings. I like that I can create my own pages and favorite them so I can implement them later on other books. Overall great app and I’d recommend to anyone who rather have digital notes rather than a bunch of paperwork. 10/10
I use this app for everything from writing and computer science homework to project and vacation planning. There are lots of very useful page templates and more than enough colors and tools to fill a page with notes and diagrams. Pixel and stroke eraser modes and a quick and easy toolbar make getting my thoughts onto the iPad easy as can be; with little practice I got faster than I was with pen and paper. The combo of simplicity and feature set really stands out among the many notebook apps. The only issue is managing the books and pages once you have them. Notebooks can’t be grouped and are just shown in a single row (with not enough cover options to distinguish them aside from a small label). Sorting pages inside a notebook is clumsy, and there is only one non-configurable grid to see the pages if you are trying to find something you wrote. I would love to see folders for notebooks and the ability to use photos (or specific pages, not just the last-viewed one) as notebook covers. A dedicated landing page for the app could show the last pages from recent notebooks and also offer a grid of all notebooks with resizable icons. Within notebooks, a pop-up display like Kindles have for viewing other pages could allow for much faster cross-referencing pages than repeatedly scrolling through the grid between distant pages.
The app has several sparks of brilliance and the vast array of notebook types far outstrip what I’ve seen in other notebook apps. Unfortunately, the app has several issues that make me switch to other apps to get actually work done. Issues: First, using the Apple Pencil to navigate the UI is frustrating. Several touch/tap zones(like when switching tools) are too tight are require multiple taps to activate. Second, I have to use my finger to activate UI elements because of the poor touch zones when using an Apple Pencil , but even some buttons are still are very hard to use when using a finger. Like the edit button when trying to delete pages. Annoyances: First, The text based “stickers” don’t account for background color, so if you use black notebook “paper” the sticker labels still have black text. Second, I want to disable both the swipe down gesture and swipe up gesture, I keep activating them on accident. Third, When adding a sticker, you have to manually press the layer button to leave “edit?“ mode. Tapping outside the sticker should just do that. Outside of those things I’ve listed. Notebook management is nonexistent . You can’t group notebooks nor and you can only view your list of notebooks in a 50/50 view with an open notebook. I want a dedicated view that shows notebooks. And on the very low list of things is a fountain pen option as a tool.
|Easy to organise stories in story map|
|It's fast to create tasks and the drag & drop system is easy to navigate|
|Cannot upload stories|
|Poor number of integrations with other platforms and tools|
|UI is not always very intuitive|
|Unlimited unique cover combinations|
|Search your handwritten notes for words or phrases|
|Relatively high price when not on sale|
|No way to share virtual notebooks|
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