By Steven G. Mehta


After I wrote a post about using the Ipad in mediation, I have had several requests to identify other applications that might be useful for a mediator or attorney.  So today, I thought I would do a brief review of Speedtext HD.

When I first started writing on Speedtext HD, I loved the way that it wrote text.  First, let me say that this app is not a handwriting to typewriting conversion program.  It is simply a handwritten note taking application.

The application requires that you write your text in a large text box.  The box is very easy to write words in and then the words written in the large box automatically get smaller and are placed on the line where your cursor is stopped.  The text that is written on the pad is very realistic and is probably one of the best apps for mirroring your natural handwriting as if on paper.

In addition, you do not have to press any silly buttons or cursors to continue the writing of the text in the box.  After you finish a word or two or three (as much as the box will fill) and you lift your pen/stylus/finger, the program automatically clears the box for new writing and places the original content directly on the page.

When changing pages, or adding a new page it is as simple as pressing the plus button or pressing the > button on the bottom of the page.  You can then switch to a new page or one of the existing pages.  One nice feature is that each additional page will be automatically created with a date stamp in the menu bar on the left and thus you can track when you took the notes.  You can also switch between pages by simply pressing the small thumbnail of any page on the left side.  This feature is nice for an attorney or mediator who might have to switch between notes throughout a hearing or mediation.

You can also create a different notepad for different files.  Thus if you want to make sure all notes regarding the Johnson matter are in the same place and in date order this app is a great notetaking app.

Another nice feature is that you can change the color of the ink to red, green or black and can change the thickness of your pen.  It would be nice if there were more options for both pen size and color.

Where I have found some difficulties is when I am not writing text, but I might need to annotate an existing note.  For example, when I have already written something, and then want to circle the text later, I cannot do so.  If I want to add a star or asterisk next to a point, it is hard to maneuver to do so because you have to move the cursor to the specific spot that you want the asterisk, and then you have to press a checkmark button which then provides you with approximately 30 different types of asterisks.  I find that most are useless such as a heart, smiley face, music icon, shopping icon, calculator icon, and luggage tag icons.  I use the checkmark, and X sign.

Another major limitation is that I cannot email the entire notebook to someone.  I have to email each page seperately which can be a real pain if you have taken many pages of notes.

If it were not for those major limitations, I would probably end up using this program as my primary writing tool.