iAnnotate is a PDF manager/annotation app that projects out using the VGA adapter. I’ve provided a picture of the interface, below.
I investigated GoodReader and iAnnotate, and eventually decided on iAnnotate because it seemed to offer more variety in its features for annotation (highlighting, note bubbles, bookmarks, ‘written’ annotations, strikeout, underline, stamps, etc.) and ease of use (projectable via VGA adapter, scroll lock, page locator, ‘go to’ page, navigable bookmarks, annotation navigation, full document search, tabbed reading, etc…but, warning, this ‘ease’ is achieved after you read all the fine print)
Here are some basics:
Cost: $9.99 (pretty reasonable!)
Maker: AjiDev, L.L.C
User interface: Once you read through all the initial information on the many different ways to use iAnnotate (the PDF guides are automatically downloaded into your device…a ‘quick start’ and a longer user guide), the interface is fairly user-friendly. This being said, it is still — for lack of a better expression — pretty ‘busy’ in terms of all the options it offers (for instance, in the document manager you can organize your files according to your favorites, your newest additions, already annotated documents, unread documents, alphabetical order, recently read, etc…and failing these options, if you’re mesmerized by this great number of clerical possibilities, you can do a library search for all of your PDFs using keywords). Then again, I prefer to have many choices…so it works just fine for me.
Document transfer: You can download documents into iAnnotate from email, the integrated web downloader in iAnnotate, iTunes, Safari, GoodReader, Dropbox (and other applications that support the ‘open in…’ feature), and the iAnnotate Reader Service (by the makers of iAnnotate). You can then transfer your annotated documents from your iPad via all the same means (the email feature is particularly useful here). If you have iPad iOS 4 AirPrint you can also print your annotated PDFs directly from the iPad. Note: Apparently, if you don’t use the ARS (iAnnotate Reader Service), you loose some of the metadata that iAnnotate (and all PDF readers) vests in the document and thus might loose some of your more complicated annotations. But…I’ve been using Dropbox exclusively for the last month and haven’t noticed any loss.
What I use it for most right now: My grad and undergrad classes all have PDF readings in addition to the textbook. I was feeling very guilty about the amount of paper that I was using by printing these and then annotating by hand. I also tend to ‘misplace’ stacks of paper (e.g. ‘accidentally’ throw them in the trash) and thus wanted to put all of my documents into a single, easy to find location.
Future applications: With my colleague, Sky Shineman, I am co-teaching a graduate seminar next semester (indeed, our proposal to the College revolved around using iPads in this class). If we are able to borrow iPads for the students, I would like to use iAnnotate as our primary reader (our subject matter revolves around art trends and issues of the current year and very near past – thus because of this novelty, we read predominantly from contemporary art magazines, etc., which are easily made into PDFs) because it will allow members of the class to read and easily share their preliminary thoughts on the material with their classmates. This fact alone will facilitate our in-class discussions.