Recommended iPad apps for technical academics

I have an iPad now (hooray research funds) and I’ve been trying to figure out how to make it more useful for me research-wise. Here are some apps I’ve found, but I would love recommendations on others that are useful for academics who do math-y stuff.

OmniFocus is a task management app — it’s a little heavy-featured and expensive, but I’ve been using it to help myself reorganize (and sync) when on planes and the like.

iAnnotate PDF is a PDF annotation tool that syncs to Dropbox (among other things). I now drop the papers I have to review in to a folder there and then read and mark them up. Given that my review load has doubled recently, being able to make notes without printing is nice. I think it will get even better once I get a stylus.

In terms of media, IEEE Spectrum is available, as is Communications magazine (but not Signal Processing).

I use Prompt to SSH into machines on the few times that I need to do that from the iPad. It has saved my butt once or twice.

PDF Presenter is supposed to be nice for doing slides, but I haven’t used it yet.

There’s an old post on LaTeX for the iPad, but nothing really looked that appealing.

Anyone else have some recommendations?


3 thoughts on “Recommended iPad apps for technical academics

  1. If you find a nice stylus for iAnnotate, let us know!

    I have found there are some mysteries in getting a PDF attachment in gmail to iannotate. I open the pdf in Mail, then i get an option to open in safari. Sometimes the pdf displays in safari, but sometimes gmail tab opens in safari. In the latter case, I tap on the pdf attachment link in safari/gmail and i then open it in safari. Finally, from safari I can open in dropbox or in iannotate directly. Also, while I can open a pdf in dropbox in iannotate, I am not sure I figured how to save the annotated version in dropbox. Instead I end up emailing myself the annotated pdf. Filesystem weirdness aside, I am pretty happy with iannotate.

  2. I’ve been trying out a few apps for hand-written note taking. (I got a stylus similar to yours, I tried Bamboo Paper, Clibe, GoodNotes, and Notability. So far Notability is the one I like best. It has a nice combination of handwritten (free style) and typing capabilities, and if you’re using it to take notes during a seminar you can simultaneously record and embed the audio in the file. Easily exports to pdf, syncs with Dropbox and has other features you’d want/expect in something like this.

    Still trying to find a good app for doing collaborative brainstorming (support for editing Google Drawings on iPad would be nice, but not there yet…). Might give iBrainstorm a try.

    For pdfs I’ve been using GoodReader.

    And if you’re looking for a good quick distraction, the Guardian Eyewitness app regularly has some pretty nice journalistic photos.

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