In this guide, I will be testing a digital pen with handwriting recognition features – this pen is able to capture whatever you write onto a blank sheet of paper and store it in a notemanager, then export it to JPG or actual text documents

Jump directly to preparing the digital pen

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Preparation: What You Need – IRISNotes and USB Extension Cable

In this guide I will be extensively testing the digital pen produced by IRIS Inc. along with their software IRISNotes.

IRIS Inc provides some of most innovative products and also provides various document scanner pens and even various cloud solutions

You can buy this digital pen here:

You will also need approx 30 minutes to follow this guide, a sheet of paper and preferably a USB extension cable because the one that IRIS includes is a little short

Grab USB Extension cable here

Step 1: Preparing The Digital Pen

Before you can actually use the digital pen, you obviously need to insert some batteries. The IRISNotes pen package should include 2 batteries

1. Step Remove the the pen cover (twist it clockwise)

2. Step Add the batteries carefully

3. Step Add one of the refills into the pen

Step 2: Add Paper To Clip

On the back of the receiver there’s a clipper – add a blank sheet of paper

Step 3: Connecting The Receiver

1. Step Correctly connect the IRISNotes USB device and make sure to install IRISNotes Express. Before using the pen wait 30 minutes until it is partially loaded

1a. To turn on the receiver you need to hold the button on the receive for 5 seconds – if it still won’t turn on you should check your USB connection or USB cable – in some cases a USB extension might not work properly

1b. After you have connected the USB receiver it will instantly turn on and show a loading bar – also in the system tray a popup should appear saying device connected

Device Detected Succesfully.png

Step 4: Using The Notes Manager To Upload Notes

2. Step After successfully installing the software, waiting 30 minutes for the pen to load and a reboot you will be greeted by a program called Notes Manager

3. Step The Notes Manager program will do the work for you and recognize your hand-writing and convert it to characters – a procedure known as OCR, short for optical character recognition

4. Step You will be asked what mode to use – you can either pick the “Mouse” or the “Note” mode – the mouse mode has the advantage that you can use the pen for “mouse” clicks

Set Digital Mode.png

Testing The Pen

Finally, you should be all set and can start writing a first test note – to make things easier for the built-in OCR software I’ll be using capitalized writing.

When you first write a note a new window will appear

This Is A Test.png

When you right-click into the note you can copy this directly to the clipboard, clear the note or edit it

Copy To Clipboard.png

If you don’t want to edit the note, click the Save button

Saving Note.png

Your last notes will appear

Your Notes.png

Then let’s see how well this converts to text using the built-in OCR

Ocr Note To Text.png

But that’s when it happens, the software is requesting an outbound connection – OCR via 3rd-party services? A no-go for private notes. This could easily be intercepted and if you intend to use this for more than private notes, this won’t do it

Ocr Via 3Rd Party Service.png

I will be on the lookout for full-fledged OCR software that will help to convert notes to text in an upcoming guide and let you know what alternatives there are

Anyway, let’s see if we can export our notes properly

Exporting Notes As Data File Pegvf.png

The output format is called pegvf and can be opened with IRIS’s Note Manager

However, you can also export notes as JPG files and then use professional OCR software to convert your pictures to real text documents and this is what I intend to show you next

Stay tuned for an update on this

Disclosure: I am not paid by IRIS Inc. for this article, nor am I affiliated with IRIS Inc